The Whyalla Veterinary Clinic has urged residents to get their dogs vaccinated for parovrius, with the latest outbreak of the deadly disease estimated to have claimed the lives of over 100 unvaccinated dogs.
Doctor Andrew Mellville-Smith said that vaccination is the ‘gold standard’ for preventing parvovirus.
“What really puts the tragedy of parvovirus in perspective, is that cost of a health check and vaccination is cheaper than the cost of euthanasia and cremation of a dog dying of parvovirus,” he said.
“Prevention involves vaccinating puppies at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age and keeping your dog safe until the vaccine provides immunity.
“This is especially important when there is a parvovirus outbreak, like the one we are seeing in Whyalla at the moment.”
According to Dr Mellville-Smith, adult dogs over 1 year of age should receive a yearly vaccination.
“Unvaccinated dogs should be kept separate from other dogs and never taken onto the streets, dog park, beach and so on. Change your clothes if you have come into contact with other dogs,” he said.
“If dogs around you have come down with parvovirus, don’t bring your dog into the area.”
Parvovirus, which spreads through dog feces, attacks the intestines of the infected dog and causes continuous vomiting and bloody diarrhoea.
Death from dehydration and secondary infection follows soon after.
Doctor Mellville-Smith said all dogs with parvovrious that have been intensively treated at the Whyalla Veterinary Clinic have survived.
“To date, there are no reports of fully vaccinated dogs coming down with parvovirus in Whyalla,” he said.
If you need to contact the Whyalla Veterinary Clinic, ring 8645 9926.