A combination of tests are required in order to give an accurate diagnosis of Canine Parvovirus. These tests can include but are not limited to:
You will also be asked to provide a comprehensive history of the health of your pet and the progression of any symptoms that they have displayed. You may also be asked to provide samples of other bodily fluids.
There is no cure for CPV itself, but instead treatment revolves around easing symptoms and ensuring that further problems such as bacterial infections do not take hold. This is usually done in a hospital environment and may involve intravenous fluid therapy, nutrition therapy, anti-sickness medications, antibiotics and anthelmintics.
Puppies have a lower survival rate because of their underdeveloped immune systems. The survival rate for adult dogs is usually around 70%. Dogs who do not survive usually succumb to secondary bacterial infections, organ failure from severe dehydration, intestinal hemorrhages or as a result of toxins in the bloodstream.
Prevention is better than cure!
As with most illnesses, prevention is almost certainly better than cure. Vaccinations against CPV can be done as early as 8 weeks old and puppies should be vaccinated at 8, 12 and 16 weeks, after which they should be kept from socializing with other animals for another fortnight. After 16 weeks of age, they should be sufficiently vaccinated to have contact with other animals. If your pet is one of the higher-risk breeds your pet may require an extended initial vaccination program.
If you are re-homing an older dog then check with the shelter or current owner when it last had a CPV vaccination. If you are in any doubt at all then consult with your veterinarian to ensure that your pet receives the correct vaccination program for their requirements.
Dogs that have had CPV need to be kept in isolation for a minimum of two months after the initial recovery stage. Your pet will still have a weakened immune system and your veterinarian will be able to advise you on ways that you can boost this. Your pet will also prefer an easy to digest diet, and for its food and water to be close by. Ensure that you regularly clean all of your dogs’ equipment with non-toxic cleaner.
Unfortunately suffering from CPV does not leave your pet with immunity and there is no guarantee that it will not reoccur. Make sure your dog is vaccinated against CPV as soon as possible, and stick to a regular schedule.