Dogs in danger of parvovirus disease

By Terry Knight, Lake County Record-Bee

Parvovirus disease can be deadly to dogs, especially puppies. However a simple vaccination can prevent this disease. According to Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Lisa Takesue of Main Street Veterinary Clinic in Lakeport, the number of cases of parvovirus coming into her clinic has more than doubled over the past month.

Takesue said it’s mostly young puppies that get the disease and it can be cured by hospitalization and treatment, but it can be costly. Whereas it only costs about $20 to have a dog vaccinated (the vaccine is part of a multiple vaccine), it can cost up to a $1,000 to treat an infected animal. Without proper treatment about 75 percent of the infected dogs will die. Puppies are given the initial vaccination at eight weeks and a second shot in four weeks. After that a booster shot is given every three years.

According to Takesue, dogs get parvovirus from eating or sniffing the feces from an infected dog. She said that dogs will mess and the droppings will get buried in the backyard. A puppy will dig up the feces and get infected. The virus can stay active in the ground for more than five years, long after the owners of the infected dog may have moved out of the home.

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