Canine parvovirus type 2 (CPV2, colloquially called parvo) is a contagious virus mainly affecting dogs. The disease is highly infectious and is spread from dog to dog by direct or indirect contact with their feces. It can be especially severe in puppies that are not protected by maternal antibodies or vaccination.
It has two distinct presentations, a cardiac and intestinal form. The common signs of the intestinal form are severe vomiting and severe hemorrhagic (bloody) diarrhea. The cardiac form causes respiratory or cardiovascular failure in young puppies. Treatment often involves veterinary hospitalization. Vaccines can prevent this infection, but mortality can reach 91% in untreated cases.
There are two types of canine parvovirus
There are two types of canine parvovirus called canine minute virus (CPV1) and CPV2. CPV2 causes the most serious disease and affects domesticated dogs and wild canids. There are variants of CPV2 called CPV-2a, CPV-2b and CPV-2c. Types 2a and 2b are distinct from the original CPV type 2 in terms of virulence and their ability to infect and cause disease in cats too. CPV-2c is a newly identified variant similar to 2b. The viral protein of 2c contains one amino acid different from CPV-2b but it is believed this could be significant. 2c strains have been identified in parts of Europe, the Americas and in Asia. Emergence of this strain has led to claims of ineffective vaccination of dogs, however studies have shown that the existing CPV vaccines still provide adequate levels of protection against CPV type 2c.
To help prevent the spread of the parvo virus, we recommend the ProVetLogic Animal Care Spray and wipe for home use.
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