Parvovirus Problems on the rise

by Jacqueline Sit
NewsWest 9

It's summer time and spending more time outside could be a welcoming sight, but it could be dangerous for your pets.  It's a virus doctors say once your dog catches it, there is no cure and all you can do is wait it out.

"He's had severe vomiting and diarrhea and lot of blood in his stool," Vilma Salcedo, a pet owner, said.

A sad sight Vilma Salcedo says she couldn't bear, just over the weekend her puppy Porky didn't seem the same.

"We really noticed he was lying around and not moving at all no barking again withdrawn from the children," Salcedo said.

And that was unlike her furry friend, until the constant vomiting and diarrhea sent her pet to the emergency room.

"I was concern over if it was a disease that can or maybe contagious to myself or the children so I needed to do something about it right away," Salcedo said.

Doctors say Porky tested positive with Parvovirus or "Parvo".

A virus that attacks the gastrointestinal tract of dogs, especially puppies like Porky.

"It was a disease that only 75% of puppies and small animals can actually pull through it made us really frightened, I really regretted not having him immunized as a should have," Salcedo said.

Porky wasn't vaccinated; just like many other canines Dr. Brandon Murray treats everyday.  It's a common case that's turning up a lot more around this time of the year.

"Probably a little more because of the rain and some down fences," Salcedo said.

Spending more time outdoors and possibly ingesting a virus that is passed from an infected dog.

"The virus itself is in the environment it's around. it's in the soil it's been there a long time and it's going to be there for a long time," said Dr. Brandon Murray who has seen up to 5 cases of Parvo everyday at the 8th Street Animal Hospital.

The symptoms include lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea.

"The diarrhea can become bloody that point dogs may not be able to get up because they've become so weak they can't keep any fluids down," Murray said.

Dog owners like Vilma say she wishes she got porky vaccinated sooner, but fortunately, she saved her puppy just in time.

"It's definitely important and you want to take care of your pet before you see him in the condition, I saw him in, just struggling between life or death, it's quite serious, take care of it while you can," Salcedo said.

Doctors say if this virus is left untreated, it could be deadly.  As for porky, the owner says he will continue taking his treatment until the end of this week, he is said to be doing a lot better now.