Parvovirus Treatment In Dogs

, the dogs will very quickly become infected with parvovirus ...

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 “Parvovirus Treatment In Dogs”

  1. Kristy Chong says:

    What is the survival rate of dogs infected with Parvovirus?
    My one year old Jack Russell/Shih Tzu mix has recently contracted Canine Coronavirus and Parvovirus. He started showing symptoms such as lethargy and loss of appetite on Saturday so we brought him to the vet. Because he only had one vaccination, the vet could not diagnose him immediately. She prescribed him antibiotics, pain killers and vitamins with immune booster liquid.The next day, my dog was feeling better. He was more active. However, later that night, he vomited. The next day (Monday) he vomited three times, once in the morning, afternoon (after we fed him) then in the evening. We rushed him to the vet after and he was tested positive for both diseases. His stool was soft, but not runny. He is now warded and undergoing treatment. But I want to know what are the survival rates in adult dogs contracting Parvovirus. Thanks.

  2. Tasha C says:

    Question about Parvovirus in dogs?
    I adopted 2 puppies ( a chocolate lab and a pit bull ) I took them to the vet to get vaccinations started, mentionted to the vet that the lab had been vomiting and had diarrhea, they ran a parvo test, came back positive, I immediatly came home and reasearched as much as I could, but there is sooo much conflicting information.I know that I am rambling (so sorry) now to my questions. What medications are usually prescribed for treatment, and are all dogs usually kept at the vets for a few days,(mine were sent home with me), how much liquid should I force them to drink and how often?? The medication that was prescribed are Primor, Amforol, and Centrine. 2 for vomiting and diarrhea and one for infection. 4 hours after giving medication the pitbull who was not showing symptoms started vomiting, (a side effect apparently of ALL the medications prescribed, event the ones to PREVENT vomiting.) Is there a better way to treat them, a REAL way.I do not want them to die….Please help me…Please
    I live in a small town there is only the one vet here, so calling another isnt exactly an option. I’m afraid to drive them to another town because it has been so extremely hot here.
    only the lab was tested but the vet told me that because they had been together the entire time they had been at my home it was likely the pit has it as well.
    Thank you Mercedes C for your information, your prayers, and the hope that you have given me. I sincerly hope from the bottom of my heart that your dog gets well very soon. I am praying for you as well. Just thank you so much.

  3. says:

    What treatments did dogs/cats have before the wonders of medication?
    So I’m really fascinated by how much modern medications we give to our pets. For dogs, they get their dosage of Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Parvovirus, Bordetella, Rabies, deworming, anti-diarrhea, ANTIBIOTICS, inflammation, etc. For rougly 15,000 yrs we’ve domesticated our canine friends by picking the friendliest, healthiest, and/or hardest working ones and breed them, making subsequent breeds better and better. In the nature, the mother canine ignores the weakest puppies and instead pay attention to the strongest ones to make sure the stronger genes will be passed on.

    This goes on for 15,000 yrs, but then in the past 100 years we start to give ANTIBIOTICS DHPP bordetella shots dewormer etc etc. We take weak dogs that would have died from nature, and breed them based on LOOKS (Conformation) and how pretty their furs are.

    By messing around, are we not making pets less healthy? We seem to have more & more dependencies on modern medication, while decreasing genetic vigor.

  4. Kimberley says:

    I think my dogs recovered from Parvovirus.?
    Last week from monday too about thursday he was ill, Throwing up and laying it, Sleeping in odd spots we could never figure out where he was.
    He tested positive for parvo, and because we didnt have money upfront for treatment we brought him home.

    Straight after we started feeding him ice cubes too keep him hydrated which he loved, and he slept in mums cupboard which has been disinfected. The next (friday) he was walking around a TINY BIT and stopped throwing up all together, He ate lots of ice.. And was well hydrated, AND he ate cat food. Which was a good sign too us since he hadnt eaten at all. (Saturday)-Started playing again running around and eating tougher meats like steak and sausages, And chewing on ice. (sunday-yesterday in aus)-He was practically back too normal. Now he is completely back too normal Apart from the fact that he still has a little runny poo but its turning hard, and its not as black.

    =] has he recovered from parvo?

  5. x_kookoo4kokopuffs_x says:

    The old cures were all the same and consisted of a shotgun. Enjoy the modern technology and medication!

  6. »»SiLLY RABBiT«« says:

    What is the home treatment for parvovirus in dogs?
    Saturday, our 5 month old pit bull, BJ, was put in the animal hospital for parvo. The vet said he was really on his last limb. He couldn’t even walk. The vet bill is costing us a fortune.
    We have 2 other pitbulls. Jasmine(his mother, 3 yrs old) & Trina(his sibling, 5 mos). After we found out BJ had parvo we immediately took them to the vet to get parvo vaccinations. Yesterday, they begin to show symptoms for parvo such as vomiting & Trina has diarrhea. Im pretty sure they both have parvo.
    What do you think?
    If so, what’s the home treatment for it?
    Because I cant afford 2 extra trips to the vet.

  7. MiaJones says:

    i thnk so too.

  8. Fetch 11 Humane Society says:

    You were too late in getting the shots for your other dogs. It certainly sounds like they have Parvo, too. Keep in mind that without treatment 80% of dogs die from this disease… Parvo effects the bowels and digestive tract and strips the bowels of the membrane that protects the rest of the body from the waste in the bowel — so, basically, the whole body turns “septic”.

    You can do part of the treatment at home, but you still need to get antibiotics from the vet.

    The home-part of the treatment is going to take about 7 to 10 days, and you’re going to have to get up every 2 hours (day and night) for part of it, so be prepared for that.

    Step One: Take your dogs off their food for 24 hours to give the bowels a chance to “calm down”. Then feed the dogs nothing but a mixture of boiled white rice and hamburger until their stools start to firm up more. (Boil the hamburger; don’t pan fry it.) Feed the dogs only once a day at the same time every day so their bodies get on a “schedule” of eating and eliminating.

    Step Two: Because vomitting and diarrhea are commion with Parvo, the dogs are going to dehydrate quickly. You will need to see to it that they get water EVERY 2 HOURS, day and night, for the next 7 to 10 days. If they won’t drink from a bowl, feed them water with a needleless syringe or a turkey baster. Then test them each day to see if they’re hydrated enough. To test for hydration, pinch up the fur and skin on the back of the neck between your fingers. Lift the skin and fur straight up away from the dog’s body and then release it. If the skin snaps back into place, the dogs have enough water in their system (and are well-hydrated). If the skin stays bunched up or goes slowly back into place, it means the dogs need more water.

    Step Three: You can give the dogs a child’s dose of baby aspirin (81 mg) once or twice a day to help stave off fever, and a vitamin C tablet to help boost their immune system. Take the dogs’ temperature (rectally) once or twice a day. “Normal” for a dog is around 101. If the temp goes up to 102 or above, it has a fever. Anything over 104 will kill the dog.

    Step Four: Keep the dogs away from one another until they are all well; otherwise, they’ll just keep reinfecting one another.

    Step Five: The Parvo virus can live outside of the body for up to 6 months. The only household product that will kill it on surfaces is bleach. You’re going to need to clean with bleach EVERYTHING the dogs have come in contact with… And you’re going to have to keep everything around them bleach-cleaned until they’re well again.

    Once everyone is well again, remember to give them their yearly booster shots so they don’t get ill again.

    Good Luck!

  9. Latina Mommy says:

    I agree with everyone else. Believe me tho I feel ur pain…I am also treating my puppy for parvo…its horrible. But anyways…I think its so horrible they didn’t tell u everything u needed to know! I am doing home care and they told me detailed information on EVERYTHING to do, and gave me all of these articles about it and what to do. The vet I went to kinda sucked too cuz they dont accept payment plans and I was forced to do home treatment…he is still alive tho and its been 4 days. But to answer your question….Give them pedialite every 15min-1 hr…(I give it every 20-45 min). The amount depends on the weight of the dogs. Pedialite is good because it helps maintain electrolytes. I have no idea what those medicines are. But they gave me amoxicillion, tamiflu, and reglan. I was told the tamiflu worked so maybe u can try that out if they can give u some. I heard it has a higher sucess rate. I couldn’t really tell u tho cuz I have only seen my dog sick with the parvo. And for the pitbull give him some pepto bismol. About one teaspoon full in a syringe. A few times mine threw up the nausea medicine an hr after he took it, and he continued to throw up after that, so I gave him the teaspoon of pepto every 2-3 hrs and it worked. It kept him from puking until his next dose was due. I did this to prevent over dosing since the meds had time to absorb. I don’t recommend it frequently tho, but when u need it in between the nausea medicine doses to keep the meds and fluids down use it. Then when its time for the next dose give him the nausea medicine as precribed. And the only way I can say is a better way is to take them in to the hospital, BUT that isn’t guarnteed that he’d live. I think that u should be able to treat them at home, unless they become really bad then take them in again. Just make sure to keep up with all of that. Oh yea and clean EVERYTHING they came into contact with bleach. Bleach is the ONLY thing that is known to kill the virus! Mop ur floors…throw out toys, bedding…ect. U don’t want to re-infect them, or anyone who comes to ur house that has a dog. I hope ur dogs get better. I’m going to pray for both of ours! Mine has been sick for 4 days! My poor baby =[

    You are very welcome! What’s funny is that my dog is an adopted chocolate lab as well! He’s 11 weeks old. But I bet its harder for you having to treat 2 dogs at one time! I really hope they get better! =[ But be prepared…its hard work maintaining them. In the past 3 days I think i’ve had 9 hrs of sleep total (on and off), and I’ve barely eaten because every time i’m about to he pukes or something. Also make sure to clean all of their bodily fluids with bleach each time. But make sure u stay up at night with them and keep them comfortable and give them hope to live. I’m sittin right next to my dog as we speak. I can’t let him out of my sight I get paranoid! Well if u have any questions e-mail me or send me an IM at U can send me updates on them!

  10. Elizabeth says:

    The survival rate is slim but I agree seems like it was caught early so theres hope. Good luck parvo is vicious.