A warning for dog owners to check their pet’s vaccinations are up to date.
A deadly disease has been found in our region with Sugarland Animal Hospital treating its first Parvovirus patient for 2023.
The virus attacks an animal’s gastrointestinal system and is often fatal.
Mykeala Campanini from Sugarland Animal Hospital explains the symptoms to look out for.
“Things like bloody diarrhoea, vomiting, lethargy and in some cases they can get either a fever or hypothermia. It affects their ability to regulate their body temperature but the gastrointestinal ones are usually the first signs we see,” she says.
Locals are warned the virus can still impact their pets even if they haven’t interacted with other dogs.
“It can live in its environments for, in some cases, up to seven years. For people who are living in rental accommodation or backyards where they don’t know the history of it, it is a bit scary there could be Parvovirus in the soil there or you could simply walk it into your home as well on your shoes,” Ms Campanini says.
Ms Campanini says the best treatment is prevention.
“Puppies we recommend three vaccines spaced four weeks apart so they should essentially get their last one at 16 weeks of age. For adult dogs they do need one every 12 months. Once they’re vaccinated it does generally take about two weeks for those vaccines to take full effect.”
It’s recommended to keep dogs and puppies home until at least two weeks after their final vaccination.
Young puppies need to stay off grassed areas and not be taken to the beach or on walks until then.