Deadly Dog Virus In Michigan Has Been Discovered, And Here’s What A Veterinarian Wants Pet Parents To Know – DodoWell

The deadly virus affecting dozens of dogs in Northern Michigan has been discovered, and we want to make sure pet parents have all the latest information on the mysterious illness that has puzzled experts for weeks.

State agricultural officials have determined the illness is parvovirus, a highly contagious and often fatal disease that causes acute gastrointestinal illness and is usually found in unvaccinated puppies.

Symptoms include bloody diarrhea and poop, vomiting, and lack of energy.

So far, most of the dogs affected have been under the age of 2, and all of the dogs didn’t have a history of complete vaccination, according to experts.

To find out how pet parents in the area can protect their dogs, and what that has to do with vaccinations, we spoke to Dr. Hilary Jones, veterinarian and chief veterinary officer at DodoVet, for her insight on parvovirus.

What to know about the deadly dog ​​virus in Michigan

Parvovirus is passed from dog to dog, so to keep dogs safe, vaccination is critical.

Pet parents in the area should make sure their dogs have been given one of the core vaccines, DHPP, which covers distemper, parvo, parainfluenza and adenovirus.

“Fully vaccinated means that puppies have completed the three series of shots that are often given at 8, 12 and 16 weeks,” Dr. Jones told The Dodo. “Adult dogs get vaccinated every one to three years for DHPP.”

While the best way to protect against this new suspected parvovirus strain is to make sure your dog is up to date on his vaccines, Dr. Jones has a few more suggestions for pet parents:

  • Avoid high-traffic areas like parks, dog parks, ponds and lakes.
  • Don’t let your dog drink from communal water bowls.
  • If your pet is not fully vaccinated, avoid interactions with other dogs.
  • Make sure you clean up after your dog, as feces can help spread the disease.
  • Also monitor your dog for GI signs like vomiting or diarrhea, or changes in energy and appetite (and if you see these signs, reach out to your vet immediately).

“Canine parvovirus is a severe and highly contagious disease in dogs, and veterinary professionals have extensive experience with this virus,” State Veterinarian Nora Wineland told The Detroit News. “We have a highly effective vaccine available to help protect dogs from the virus. Dogs that are not fully vaccinated against this virus are the most at risk. … Protecting Michigan’s dogs is a team effort.”

If you live in Michigan or a surrounding state and suspect your dog is suffering from any parvovirus symptoms (bloody diarrhea and poop, vomiting and lack of energy) it’s best to contact your vet immediately. We hope this situation clears up quickly, and we’ll keep you up to date on all the latest information as we learn more about this deadly virus.


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