Te Awamutu, Waikato -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/16/2015 -- Recently there has been increased number of cases of the canine parvovirus, with a number of cases popping up around New Zealand in the past month.
Parvovirus is a serious disease that primarily affects dogs between the ages of 6 weeks to 6 months of age (although older dogs can be affected also). It is a highly contagious viral infection that can cause a loss of appetite, lethargy, diarrhoea and severe vomiting. Without proper care and treatment, the virus can be fatal.
The virus is spread through water and food that is contaminated, and passed from dog to dog. People in contact with a dog that has it can also spread the disease, on clothing, vehicles and objects. Unfortunately symptoms can take up to two weeks to appear.
VetEnt, New Zealand's largest vet group, vet Sharon Hodgson says "Prevention is key with Parvovirus, and staying up to date with your dog or puppy vaccinations can prove very successful in preventing this disease". VetEnt recommend vaccinating all puppies from 6 weeks of age against many diseases – including parvovirus. A typical puppy vaccination program will require vaccines at 8, 12 and 16 weeks. Your puppy is not fully protected till 10 days after its final vaccination. Further vaccines should be administered at 1 year of age and then booster vaccines every 1 to 3 years. You local veterinarian can provide advice for what is best in your area.
For more information or advice, contact your local VetEnt vet clinic or visit the VetEnt website for more information.