Canine parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that causes life threatening bloody diarrhoea. In the majority of cases, the disease is fatal if treatment is not sought. Parvovirus is one of the largest causes of severe illness and death for puppies and adolescent dogs in Australia.
Fortunately, parvovirus is a treatable disease and if caught early, can be cured, especially with the advent of a number of new treatments, but this can be expensive. In our clinic, we have a close to 95% success rate with treatment, but the dog usually has to be hospitalised for several days for intensive care and requires multiple medications.
Home treatment for parvo infection is a bad idea when compared to hospitalisation and intensive care. The death rate rises substantially, and the profuse diarrhoea and vomiting will lead to heavy viral contamination in the home. This virus can persist in the environment for up to 7 months.
Parvoviral infection must be considered as a possibility in any young dog with vomiting and/or diarrhoea. We urge all dog owners to get their animals vaccinated for this disease. Prevention is far better and cheaper than treatment for this horrible disease.
Please note: Parvovirus poses no viral risk to humans, cats and livestock