Parvo Puppies

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Parvovirus And Your Dog

Parvovirus (commonly called Parvo) is a viral disease that affects dogs. It is far more common in puppies than adult dogs and can have serious ramifications for the infected animal, including death. Parvo grows best in the rapidly dividing cells of the dog’s intestines. As the virus attacks and kills these cells it causes massive diarrhea and halts or slows the creation of white blood cells. In young puppies it can often directly infect the heart, leading to death.

The symptoms of Parvo start with fever, depression, and lethargy. The dog will usually experience a loss of appetite as well and then eventually show more sever signs like vomiting and diarrhea which is often bloody. Once the virus reaches this stage dehydration and death usually follow.

Parvo is carried and transmitted by dogs. The vomit and feces of an infected animal will also carry the virus which is rather resilient and can survive outside the dog’s body in the surrounding environment for as long as nine months. Sometimes an adult dog can be infected by the virus and show no symptoms but act as a carrier transmitting the virus to the other animals it comes into contact with.

There is no cure for Parvo. Dogs that are infected will die of dehydration without treatment. That treatment primarily consists of providing fluids, giving repeated blood transfusions, and preventing dehydration. The mortality rate in dogs affected by Parvo is about 20% if the dog receives treatment in time. Without treatment, about 80% of those infected will die from it. It is a very serious disease.

Parvo tends to affect some dog breeds more than others. Dobermans, Rottweilers, and other black and tan dogs have a greater chance of contracting the virus. The reason for this is unknown but the fact that these dogs are at higher risk does not mean that owners of other types of dogs can rest easily. Dogs of any breed can become infected.

While there is no cure for Parvo, puppies can (and should) be vaccinated against it at an early age. Most vets recommend puppies be immunized starting at six weeks of age with vaccinations continuing until twenty weeks of age. Proper immunization is the best way to prevent a dog from contracting Parvo.

About the author: Kirsten Hawkins is a dog lover and animal expert from Nashville, TN. Visit for more information on dog health, the care of dogs, and dog travel.


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10 Responses to “Parvo Puppies”

  1. blu_bear011 says:

    Parvo Puppies!!!?
    I have some American Bulldog puppies who have parvo. They had already had their shots before they got it but they still managed to get it. We took them to the vet to get treated but the vet said that it would be a waste of money because it really depends on them. He said if we get them to eat and they fight back, then they will live. The only problem is that we cant get them to eat. We’ve tried dry dog food, can dog food, we’ve put puppy weaning milk in a syreige (without the neddle) and squirt in their mouths but they just throwed it back up. We’ve even tried small pieces of bacon, bologna, and turkey. How can we get them to eat and drink before its too late for the ones that are left????? HELP PLEASE

  2. Tiffany Clary says:

    How to know when your puppies parvo has passed?
    I had 6 puppies get parvo. 5 out of the 6 past away but I still have one that is doing good. I’ve been givin her pedialyte and for a little while I had to force feed her. Her poop barely had blood in it one time but now she is back to eating and drinking and her poop seems to be almost normal! So my question is how do I know when it is over?

  3. stephanie m says:

    How to treat parvo in puppies?
    I have a puppy who is about 3 months old. He is only about 3-4lbs. I believe he has contracted parvo. He won’t eat or drink anything and is just lying around. He is normally a very active and playful puppy. I’m just wondering if there is anything i can do to try and treat him myself because i can’t afford to take him to the vet. Someone please help me! Thanks!

  4. LYZA says:

    How long does it take for Parvo puppies to start eating.?
    I have 2 puppies 9 weeks that have Parvo.Yes I do have assistance of a vet.They are on iv and lots of medication but still will not eat.i have been doing this for 4 days now but, they still will not eat anything.Also does anyone know about Parvaid.Does this help or make it worst.

  5. ace_bella0323 says:

    To get rid of Parvo it takes time and money i work at a local vet and we have molly she is are parvo puppy she is in quarintine because it is highley contagious ivs first give it about a week then their tummys will be able to digest the food just give it time.

  6. Alex E says:

    Somewhere in your local area of residence ther is a person who went to school, Payed a lot of money for the education, took lots of tests after studying lots of books on the particular subject of animal medicine.

    This person is called a Veteranarian. (vet for short)

    This person is the only one who can examine your pet and then tell you with 100% accuracy.

    This is a life form. Do not guess at it!

  7. debl1203 says:

    parvo puppies?
    as i listed about a week ago my 4 puppies have parvo and where at the vets for a while, I am glad to report that they all are ok now, a little week and skinner but will recover just fine, they had gotton really bad, and made a great turn around.

    my question is can they get it again, since the vet said it will live in my yard for 2 years, we have cleaned everything with bleach and disinfect.

    there was also another dog at the vets in the same room as our dogs, different kinnel but same room and he had distemper, can they get that. they have all had there shot but not soon enough not to get the parvo so i hope they cant get the distemper too, i dont think they are strong enought to go threw it again.
    and the other dog died. I think that had to be so tromatic for them to see them zip that poor dog up in that bag right in front of them, and the owners too. I feel so lucky that mine came home again.
    thanks to all

  8. willis says:

    If you can’t afford to bring him to the vet then you should go turn him into an adoption agency or the vet. If you can’t afford your dog’s medical care then you shouldn’t have one! Parvo is deadly disease that will most likely kill any puppy and infect any other puppy who has not been treated he has come into contact with.

  9. Marsha B says:

    Speaking from experience as my dog had parvo once and I volunteer with a charitable organization for dogs where i live so i have hands on experience working with vets and dogs. I think you need a different vet. I gave my puppy a parvo shot when she had parvo by accident because she was not showing any signs o f having it. Two days later i took her to the vet because i realize she had parvo. When i got there the vet confirmed it and told me that she would have to stay. She spent three days at the vet hospital, the put her on drips, she had a blood trnsfusion, the works. So like most of the other persons who told you already you need to go to another vet. NO vet in his or her right mind will refuse to do anything to your pups. Also the vet says that if you put a drop or two of bleach/ clorox in the pup’s water that will stop them from getting parvo because it will kill the germs. i dont know how you will be able to get them to eat but you may try giving them a drop of bleach with some water in a syringe and make them drink it by holding their mouth shut until they swallow. If they vomit this is a good thing as this will be the bleach working. P.s. do not give them the bleach directly you must add water with it as they are still pups. Also try feeding them out of a baby bottle and see if that helps as it will remind them of their mom’s breast.

  10. jessicaryoko says:

    your vet was right, parvo does live in areas that have been affected for a couple of years.
    it’s not likely that your puppies will get parvo again as long as they are now up to date on their shots…and be VERY careful with them when you do let them outside. continue keeping things very clean around them, and clean up after them outside. they should be fine though. luckily, ya’ll caught it earlier enough the first time…if parvo isn’t caught quick enough there is almost no chance for survival.
    last summer we had eight dogs in our clinic at one time with parvo…and it was a huge mess. we were very VERY big on cleaniness, especially during that time…so it wouldn’t spread.
    but, like i said, they should be fine. i wouldn’t worry about it too much.
    as far as the distemper, don’t worry about it. vets are very careful with animal to animal contact in the clinics…so it’s not likely that your puppies picked anything up while there.