Tag Archives: Canine distemper
Deciding to acquire a puppy or dog deserves careful planning and discernment because owning a pet goes beyond self-pleasure. Rather, it entails responsibility to love and care for the animal and, of course, additional budget for its maintenance.
Health maintenance of pets can be costly and stressful if you are living on barely enough financial means. But certainly, these extra costs are avoidable, since there are ways by which a pet owner can limit the circumstances of spending more.
Just as humans get vaccinations to protect themselves from some serious ailment, so do pets require booster shots for immunity to serious health conditions.
Here are five most common puppy diseases to which your pets can avoid, by getting proper vaccination.
Canine distemper. Caused by paramyxovirus, the group of viruses responsible for measles in humans, canine distemper is a highly communicable, airborne, and fatal viral disease that usually attacks the respiratory, gastrointestinal and central nervous systems altogether so much so that it makes ailment very grave.
Since the virus is airborne, it can spread widely through direct and indirect contact with an infected animal. An infected dog can spread the virus through droplets that come with breathing, saliva and other bodily fluids. The virus can also be passed on through exposure to an infected animal’s excretions, such as urine and faeces.
Moreover, the canine distemper virus, which can cling and linger onto human’s skin, clothing, and shoes for at least eight hours, can be passed on to other animals through these contaminated “carriers.”
Aside from dogs of any age, canine distemper may also infect cats, skunks, and other animals. Symptoms of the disease include coughing, nasal and eye discharges, vomiting, diarrhoea, seizures, and intermittent fever.
Canine Hepatitis. Characterized by an inflammation of the liver, infectious canine hepatitis, or ICH, is an acute, communicable, and fatal viral disease caused by the Canine Adenovirus type 1 (CAV-1) that progresses very quickly, sometimes leading to death within hours of becoming ill. Aside from the liver, canine hepatitis also strikes on the dog’s kidneys, eyes, and lungs.
Infectious canine hepatitis can be passed on through direct contact with the infected animal’s urine, saliva, faeces, nasal discharges, and other bodily fluids. Kennels and contaminated food are also possible sources from where healthy dogs may pick up their infection. Likewise, dogs that have been cured of ICH can still contaminate other dogs even after six months since they have recovered.
Following an incubation period of between four to seven days, a range of clinical signs and symptoms begin to manifest on infected dogs through loss of appetite, pale gums, fever, abdominal pain, cough, vomiting, diarrhoea, and jaundice, among many other symptoms.
Canine Leptospirosis. Shaped like a question mark, canine leptospirosis is caused by the bacteria called Leptospira interrogans, a communicable bacterial infection that attacks both animals and humans and causes fatal ailment in dogs, like incessant liver and kidney failure.
Bacteria can gain entry into a healthy dog when its skin abrasion or open wound is exposed to the infected animal’s urine; and once the bacteria is absorbed into the dog’s bloodstream, the new host starts to exhibit symptoms like fever, joint pain, and nausea.
Canine Parvovirus type 2. “Parvo”, as it is commonly called, is one of the most fatal diseases that can affect dogs, particularly puppies that are un-immunized or unprotected by maternal antibodies, because it causes death as quickly as within 24 hours of infection.
Parvo is particularly presented in two distinct forms: intestinal and cardiac. Intestinal parvovirus is usually manifested by loss of energy and appetite, insuppressible vomiting, diarrhoea, and high fever that rises beyond 103°F.
Cardiac parvovirus, on the other hand, hits young puppies. Its symptoms are distinctly exhibited in the puppies’ constant crying, gasping, depression, weakness, irregular heartbeat, difficulty in breathing, and sudden death. If left untreated, mortality rate of puppies affected by cardiac parvo usually points to an alarming 90 percent.
Canine Parainfluenza. Frequently confused for kennel cough, canine parainfluenza is an extremely communicable respiratory disease that can be aggravated by environmental factors, such as high humidity, wind, and cold. It is normally exhibited by dry cough, nasal discharges, difficulty in breathing, sluggishness, pneumonia, and low-grade fever.
Recognizing the severity of these diseases should prompt us to immediately obtain vaccination for our pets. After all, as the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure.