One of our miniature Dachshunds, Didi was was very of colour last weekend. She wouldn't eat and looked depressed so on Monday morning we took her to the vet and she was diagnosed with Parvo canine parvovirus.
She spent four days the veterinary hospital where she was on an intevenous drip while the disease ran its course. She's skinny and tired but this weekend she looks much better and we hope she'll be OK.
I've never come across Parvo before - this is the first time any of our dogs have ever been ill but in just a few hours Didi changed from being a bouncy playful little dog always full of energy with a constant "smile" to being tired and although she didn't make any noise she looked as though she was in pain.
While she was at the vet I found out as much as I could about Parvo. It's a viral disease that attacks the lining of the intestinal tract, bone marrow and immune system of dogs. The virus normally causes vomiting (Didi's was a frothy yellow vomit), diarrhoea (usually foul-smelling and often with traces of blood), lethargy, depression, dehydration, high fever/chill and sudden death. Apparently, pups are more vulnerable to Parvo than adult dogs but even fully-vaccinated dogs, can die from Parvo.
Didi was put on a drip because dehydration is often cause of death with the Parvovirus, after the diarrhoea and vomiting. We were very lucky to have called the vet so quickly because without treatment, 80% of dogs who contract the virus die within a few days.
There's some very good information about how dogs can contract the virus and how to identify symptoms and treat infected dogs in the WORKING DOGS site.
All our dogs have now seen the vet, they have a clean bill of health and their vaccinations are up to date, so let's hope that all's well on the doggy front for some time to come.