Unfortunately, there is also the chance that your puppy has been born to a litter whose mother was not vaccinated. While this may sound scary, there are ways to look out for the signs and symptoms of parvo, and if caught in time, your pupper has a chance at a full recovery.
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Signs of Parvo in your Puppy
Parvo infects you doggie's tummy and intestinal tract. As a result, in terms of body language, your precious pup will show their discomfort through things like whining, avoiding interaction, listlessness, and lethargy. They may even cry when their stomach or abdomen is touched.
Basically, your puppy won't show it's usual puppy spunk and excitement. Because it can't tell you it's in pain with its words (although we all wish our doggos could talk!), your BFF will try to tell you they aren't feeling well with their body language. So make sure you pay attention if your little guy is acting differently!
- Ears drop
- Lack of appetite and severe weight loss
- High fever
The Science Behind Parvo and Puppies Born with Parvo
The first attacks the GI tract of a dog, while the second attacks a dog's heart muscles. While it can occur in adult dogs, the most common instances of parvo seen in vet's offices are pups between six weeks and six months old. This is primarily because these doggos have yet to be vaccinated against the disease.
Puppies can be born with parvo if their mother has parvo or was never vaccinated against the disease. Unfortunately, not only is it a very serious disease, but it is also extremely easy to transmit. Your puppy, or your puppy's mother, can contract parvo just by touching something that is contaminated. It is particularly more common in litters of Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, Pitties, English Springer Spaniels, German Shepherds, and Labs.
Luckily, the advancements in the fight against parvo have been relatively successful. Once properly vaccinated, your pupper will be almost completely protected against the disease. Additionally, while there is no technical cure to parvo, once identified, vets will usually put your fluffy buddy on antibiotics to help combat the deadly symptoms of the disease.
Once your little fighter has beaten parvo, they are usually only contagious for 10 more days. Then, once checking in with your vet, your little guy is free to go explore the world and make new friends!
How to React If You Think Your Dog Has Parvo
Don't be afraid of being a helicopter parent! When it comes to your new BFF's health, it's always better to be safe than sorry. After all, as cute and perfect as these little furballs are, they still can't tell us how they're feeling. So it's up to us as their owners to look out for these signs and symptoms, and take them in for an exam the second your little guy seems to be losing weight, vomits frequently, or is uninterested in food. Your vet will tell you the same!
If you suspect your dog may have parvo, do not bring them into contact with other dogs, and try to make sure to wash your hands after touching your dog. Not only do you want your little guy to get healthy as quickly as possible, but you also want to make sure that he or she doesn't get another doggo sick too!
Keep in mind that if another puppy in your buddy's litter is born with parvo, there's a good chance yours is too. Make sure to stay in contact with your breeder or rescue organization - they should be alerted about any issues that have arisen with other doggos. If you find out that another family has adopted a puppy with parvo, make sure to take yours to the vet right away for testing.
How You Can Help Your Puppy Avoid Parvo
Get your puppy vaccinated! Try to keep exposure to other dogs to a minimum until your doggo is at least 14-16 weeks of age.
Know the symptoms! By knowing the symptoms, you can save your pupper from an extended battle against this horrible disease
Talk to your vet! Your vet will know better than any blog out there the dangers of contracting parvo, how to socialize your dog without risk, and when to vaccinate.
If you know another dog that has parvo, try to avoid areas frequented by that pupper. By avoiding these places, you can avoid your own contamination, so you can go home and show your own little guy the love he deserves!
Ask your breeder or adoption agency if the mother of your doggo was vaccinated against parvo, or if any other dogs in the litter have had issues. The more you know, the less you'll have to worry!