Canine parvovirus, commonly known as parvo, is a highly contagious virus that can affect all dogs, especially those that are young and unvaccinated. Parvo affects a dog’s gastrointestinal tracts and can be spread by direct dog-to-dog contact, or by any other medium that has come in contact with contaminated feces.
This virus can also contaminate kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes, and the hands and clothing of people who handle infected. It can survive heat, cold, humidity and drying for long periods of time, thus making it a very deadly virus for dogs.
How to prevent parvo and how can you protect your dog from parvo? Here are several tips from The Animal Foundation.
Make sure your dog is properly vaccinated.
Puppies should get their first vaccines at around 6 to 8 weeks of age. Boosters should be administered at 3-week intervals until the puppy is 16 weeks of age, and then again at one year of age. Adult dogs that have already been vaccinated need to get boosters every year.
Limit your puppy or unvaccinated dog’s exposure to other dogs.
This is to prevent undetected contamination from other dogs.
Avoid places where your puppy or unvaccinated dog could be exposed to parvovirus from unvaccinated dogs.
This includes dog parks, pet stores, playgroups, and other public areas. Wait until your puppy has been fully vaccinated before bringing him to such places.
When in doubt, err on the side of caution.
Parvo can live anywhere. Vaccinating your dog against parvo costs lower than treating your dog for it, so make sure to have your dog vaccinated.
Consult with your veterinarian.
If your dog is vomiting, has diarrhea, is not eating or is lethargic, immediately bring him to the vet. Also, regular health checkups will help you keep track of your dog’s health status.
Read the full article here for more details and information on how to protect your dog from parvovirus.