HCPH Veterinary Public Health is sending this alert to inform you of the rise of parvo in the Harris County pet/stray population. We are seeing an increase in the frequency of parvo cases coming in from the community.
Canine parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that attacks white blood cells and the gastrointestinal tract of puppies, dogs, and wild canids. It is spread by direct dog-to-dog contact and contact with contaminated feces, environment, people, and fomites (kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes, and the hands and clothing of people who handle infected dogs). It is resistant to heat, cold, humidity, and drying, and can survive in the environment for long periods of times. All dogs are at risk, but puppies less than four months old and dogs that have not been adequately vaccinated against canine parvovirus are at increased risk of becoming infected and ill. To reduce gaps in protection and provide the best protection against parvovirus during the first few months of life, a series of canine parvovirus vaccinations including a vaccine between 14 and 16 weeks of age should be given. To protect adult dogs, pet owners should be sure that their dog’s parvovirus vaccination is up-to-date.
HCPH Veterinary Public Health vaccinates dogs on intake with the DHPP vaccine and intranasal Bordetella vaccine. With increased awareness of parvo cases from the community, we have been able to identify infected individuals upon intake and successfully prevent spread within the shelter.
We encourage you and your staff to be diligent about reducing the risk of infection spread throughout your veterinary clinic and the Harris County community. Please remind your clients to vaccinate their animals regularly, use good hygiene, and use caution when bringing their pet to places where young puppies congregate and areas of pet waste. Prompt and proper disposal of pet waste is advisable as a way to limit spread of canine parvovirus infection as well as other diseases that can infect humans and animals.
Veterinary Health Alert Network, Veterinary Public Health, Harris County Public Health
612 Canino Road, Houston, TX 77076, 281-999-3191
We can help you figure out if your dog's vaccinations are current. Call us at (281) 351-7184 or reach out through our website, kindvet.com
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