Karingal Vet Hospital

328 Cranbourne Road, Frankston, VIC, 3199

P: (03) 9789 3444

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What is Parvovirus and How to Prevent It

Posted on: Apr 7 2022

Parvovirus or parvo is a highly contagious viral disease that can be life-threatening in unvaccinated puppies and dogs. It can be transmitted by people, animal or objects that make contact with an infected dog’s faeces.

Here’s what you need to know.

How Does Parvovirus Affect Dogs?

Parvo attacks the lining of the small intestine, causing vomiting and diarrhoea which can result in severe dehydration, shock or even death. It also attacks the bone marrow causing any damaged bone marrow to no longer produce enough white blood cells needed to fight off infections.

How is it Contracted?

This virus is shed in the faeces of infected animals and easily transmittable if dog’s sniff the faeces when on walks or at the dog park. It can be easily transferred from dog’s paws, people’s shoes or other items and can survive for long periods in the environment, withstand cleaning and weather changes, making it hard to control.

How to Prevent Parvovirus in Dogs

Vaccinating your pet is the only way to protect them from the disease and it is highly effective and very safe. This is how to prevent Parvovirus in your dog.

  • Make sure your dog is completely vaccinated
  • Provide yearly boosters for adult dogs
  • Limit your unvaccinated dog’s exposure to other dogs
  • When visiting your vet, carry your puppy in your arms
  • Ensure you clean your house properly if you suspect infection
  • If you spend time in places where you have contact with dogs, change your clothes and shoes before returning home to your puppy
  • If your dog has diarrhea, is vomiting or is not eating, you should take him to the vet as soon as possible.

How is it Treated?

This virus usually infects unvaccinated puppies, but older dogs can be affected too. If parvovirus is suspected, your vet will perform on test to confirm it. Symptoms of parvo progress quickly, and the disease can be fatal within 48 hours if not treated so it’s important to seek a vet’s advice as soon as symptoms appear.

Karingal Vet Hospital – Parvovirus in Dogs

If you suspect that your dog may have come into contact with Parvovirus or is showing signs of infection, contact your vet as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment. You can call Karingal Vet Hospital on (03) 9789 3444 to make an appointment now.


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328 Cranbourne Road, Frankston, VIC, 3199

P: (03) 9789 3444

The Karingal Veterinary Hospital is open 6 days a week.

Our hours are

- 8am-6pm Monday-Friday,
- 9am-5pm Saturday,
- Closed on Sundays,

* We are closed on public holidays.