SUBJECT: What You Should Know About Canine Parvovirus (CPV)
Canine parvovirus type 2 (CPV-2) is a highly contagious and serious disease caused by a virus that attacks the gastrointestinal tract of puppies, dogs, and wild canines (e.g. foxes, wolves, coyotes). It was first identified in 1978 and is seen worldwide. It can also damage the heart muscle in very young and unborn puppies.
How is parvovirus spread?
CPV-2 is highly contagious and is spread by direct dog-to-dog contact and contact with contaminated feces (stool), environments or people. The virus can also contaminate kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes, and the hands and clothing of people who handle infected dogs. It is resistant to heat, cold, humidity, and drying, and can survive in the environment for long periods of time.
Even trace amounts of feces containing parvovirus may serve as environmental reservoirs of the virus and infect other dogs that come into the infected environment. CPV-2 is readily transmitted from place to place on the hair or feet of dogs or via contaminated cages, shoes, or other objects.
What dogs are at risk?
All dogs are at risk, but puppies less than four months old and dogs that have not been vaccinated against canine parvovirus are at increased risk of becoming infected and ill.
What are some facts about parvovirus?
- Parvovirus is very durable in the environment and can persist for months or years.
- ProVetLogic Professional Concentrate and Ready-To-Use for the Home and Business have been proven to kill parvovirus when used as directed.
- Parvovirus can spread on hands, feet, clothing, tools, rodents and flies traveling from kennel to kennel. Dogs may carry the virus on their fur and feet even if they themselves do not get ill. The virus enters the dog through the nose or mouth and has an incubation period of 3 days to 2 weeks (usually 5-7 days).
- Puppies under 6 months old are most likely to get severe disease. Rottweilers, Dobermans, Pit Bulls and mixes of these breeds are especially vulnerable. Adult dogs may get mild disease that is indistinguishable from diarrhea of any other cause. Affected dogs have mild to severe diarrhea, may be dehydrated and lethargic, have vomiting, or can develop severe to fatal secondary bacterial infections.
- Vaccination usually prevents disease in adult dogs that have received a vaccine at least 1-2 weeks before exposure, but does not prevent them from carrying virus on fur if exposed. Puppies up to 16 weeks of age may not be protected fully by vaccination.
How is parvovirus prevented?
Vaccination and good hygiene are critical components of canine parvovirus prevention.
You may wish to view our page on how to kill parvovirus.