A spike in the amount of dogs admitted to the Jimboomba Veterinary Surgery with parvovirus has veterinarian Paul McMahon cautioning pet owners.
In the last week, 11 canines have been put down at the clinic due to contracting the deadly disease.
Parvovirus is a life-threatening illness – living in the environment on soil and animal feces for up to a year – which could prove fatal if left untreated.
“You need to vaccinate your dog; that’s the message, clear and simple,” Mr McMahon said.
“It is particularly crucial for puppies to get vaccinated and receive their booster shots, as they’re still growing and developing.
“Their immune systems aren’t as strong; but, that doesn’t mean older dogs can’t get it too.”
Mr McMahon said mature age dogs are susceptible to contracting the disease if vaccinations are skipped or missed.
“If you can see your dog is vomiting, reluctant to eat and is not being their usual happy self, seek veterinary help immediately,” he said.
“It’s not worth the risk to wait to see if they’re okay.”
The life-threatening illness attacks the gastrointestinal tract and cardiovascular systems of dogs.
In young animals, if infected, parvovirus can also damage the heart muscle and cause lifelong cardiac problems.
“We’ve had about 25 dogs admitted to our Jimboomba clinic in December, of which 11 have died in the last week,” Mr McMahon said.
“This time of year always tends to have a high number of parvovirus cases, and it’s because the disease lives in the environment and families are moving about with their pets on holidays.”
To reduce the risk of your dog contracting the disease, make sure your pet’s vaccinations are up-to-date and limit the amount of time your pet has with un-vaccinated cats and dogs.
For more information on how to prevent parvovirus, contact your nearest veterinary clinic.
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