When your best friend is furry and loves to wag her tail, you want her to be happy and healthy all the time. That’s why it’s so important to get her vaccinated and spayed.


When viruses do break out in our community, one of the scariest is parvovirus, a serious canine disease that can be deadly. Like many illnesses, parvovirus tends to be seasonal, kicking up during the warmer months of the year.


With spring right around the corner, it’s important to do everything you can to protect your pet from this dangerous gastrointestinal infection. In this post from our veterinarian care team at Normandale Veterinary Hospital, we’re breaking down everything you need to know about parvovirus to keep your dog safe in the future. To schedule your pet’s vaccine appointment, give our veterinarians a call.

What is Parvovirus?

Parvovirus, commonly known as parvo, is a highly contagious disease that targets a pet’s gastrointestinal system. Although parvovirus primarily infects dogs, cats can also become infected on rare occasions. And like many animal illnesses, parvo outbreaks increase during the summer months.


Parvovirus primarily spreads through direct contact with infected animals, food and water bowls, or feces. It tends to spread in animal shelters, dog parks, kennels, and other locations where many dogs are found. It primarily affects unvaccinated dogs, elderly dogs, puppies less than 20 weeks old, and dogs with compromised immune systems or preexisting conditions.


Additionally, parvovirus is reported at higher rates among certain breeds, including:


●        German shepherds

●        Rottweilers

●        Pitbull terriers

●        Dobermans

Symptoms of Parvovirus

As a virus that primarily attacks a dog’s digestive system, parvovirus can produce a number of frightening gastrointestinal symptoms, including:


●        Bloody diarrhea

●        Vomiting

●        Dehydration

●        Anorexia

●        Lethargy

●        Fever


Parvovirus is a potentially life-threatening disease that can become fatal within 48-72 hours of the initial symptoms if untreated. According to the American Kennel Club, between 68 to 92 percent of dogs will survive if treated by a veterinarian right away. That’s why it’s important to have your dog vaccinated to dramatically reduce the chance she will become ill with a life-threatening infection.

Schedule Your Dog’s Parvo Vaccination

The best thing you can do for your pet besides love her is to get her vaccinated against parvovirus and other potentially serious canine illnesses. Give us a call to set up your pet’s vaccination schedule. To schedule her vaccination appointment, contact Normandale Veterinary Hospital at 952-831-8272 or contact us online.