Vet: Get your pets up to date on vaccinations, decrease chance of parvo

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SHOSHONE, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - "Sometimes there's more, sometimes there's less," said Dr. Steven Brady of the Shoshone Veterinary Hospital.

Dr. Brady says the outbreak comes in bulk, but in the last month, they've dealt with more cases — one case too many.

Parvo affects the intestinal tract and commonly affects puppies, but that doesn't mean your older dog or other pet is out of the woods.

"There's parvo on the streets," he said. "A contagious dog can urinate on your tire and you're bringing it home on the tire of your vehicle and your dog can get it through that. There's no way to prevent exposure or contamination to your dogs."

Symptoms start as light as a loss of appetite and lack of energy that can progress to vomiting and become as severe as a bloody diarrhea.

Treatment is symptomatic, but typically lasts three to seven days.

"Especially with these puppies, a big thing is glucose monitoring—making sure that they don't get hypo-glycemic," he added. "Another thing is monitoring their temperature. If they start to get a fever, that's usually a bad sign of higher mortality."

There is one thing you can do to increase the chances of recovery in the event your pup catches the disease.

"Parvovirus is almost a hundred percent completely preventable if you vaccinate," he stressed. "They require at least three vaccines as puppies starting at eight weeks (old). I just recommend that everybody make sure that their animals stay current especially if they're using them for breeding purposes (so the puppies will have a better chance of parvo immunity for their first six to eight weeks)."

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