Canine parvovirus (CPV) is a
contagious virus affecting
dogs. The disease is
highly infectious and is spread from dog to dog by physical contact and
contact with faeces.
CPV is a relatively new disease that appeared in the mid 1970s. Before 1976,
CPV did not exist anywhere; within two years, CPV had invaded every part of the
world. The virus is very similar to
distemper; in fact, they are almost identical. The consensus is that the
feline distemper mutated into CPV; however, this has never been proven.
There are two forms of CPV: intestinal and cardiac. Cardiac form is less
common. It attacks the heart muscle and the dog dies suddenly of a heart attack.
Certain breeds, such as
Dobermanns, have a
higher rate of death.
Dogs become infected through contact with CPV in faeces. Dogs that have
become infected show symptoms of the illness within 7 to 10 days. The symptoms
bloody). After a dog is infected, there is no cure. The virus itself does not
kill the dog: diarrhea and vomiting result in
secondary infections set in.
The virus attacks the
intestines, and the
Bacteria that normally live in the intestines then leak into the bloodstream and
Due to dehydration, the dog's
balance is destroyed. Normally 80% of the body is composed of water and, when
the body loses 10 to 15% of its water content, death ensues.
occur when puppies younger than 8 weeks are infected.
Survival rate depends on how quickly it is diagnosed and how aggressive the
treatment is. Diagnosis is made through detection of CPV in the faeces, although
the presence of bloody diarrhea and a low
cell count in an unvaccinated dog are strong indications of infection.
Treatment usually involves costly hospitalization, including
fluids, antinausea injections, and
injections. Even with hospitalization, there is no guarantee that the dog will
Prevention and contamination
Direct contact with infected faeces is not necessary for the disease to
spread: faeces on shoes, clothing, hair, and so on are all that is needed for
the transmission. The disease is extremely hardy and has been found to be
present in faeces even after a year including extremely cold temperatures. The
disinfectant that kills the virus is a mixture of
bleach and water, 1 part
bleach and 30 parts of water.
Prevention is the only way to ensure that a puppy or dog remains healthy.
This disease is extremely
contagious. After the disease starts and symptoms show, the dog normally
dies within 48 to 72 hours. It is a painful death. It is extremely important to
vaccinate dogs every year against CPV.
A dog that successfully recovers from CPV is still contagious for up to 2
months, so the dog must be kept away from other dogs and puppies. Neighbors and
family members with dogs should be notified of infected animals so that they can
ensure that their dogs are vaccinated and tested.
Canine Parvovirus affects dogs,
wolves and foxes. It does not
transmit to cats,
birds, or humans; although each
species has its own
- Ettinger, Stephen J.;Feldman, Edward C.(1995).Textbook of Veterinary
Internal Medicine(4th ed.). W.B. Saunders Company.
| Canine Coronavirus
| Canine Herpesvirus
| Canine Influenza
| Canine Parvovirus
| Canine Transmissible Venereal Tumor
| Cerebellar Hypoplasia
| Congenital Vertebral Anomaly
| Cherry Eye
| Craniomandibular Osteopathy
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