Bloody Diarrhea in dogs | Daily News


Bloody Diarrhea in dogs

Dr GCS Kurugala, Veterinary Surgeon, (B.V.Sc; M.Sc Poultry Science; Master of Public Administration & Management)

These days there is a severe disease among unvaccinated dogs which dog owners much worry about. That is bloody diarrhea in dogs. The disease is called as Parvo viral Diarrhea.

The canine parvovirus (CPV) infection is a highly contagious viral illness that affects dogs. The virus manifests itself in two different forms.More common is the intestinal form and less commonly seen is the cardiac form, which attacks the heart muscles of fetuses and very young puppies, often leading to death.The majority of cases of parvovirus are seen in puppies that are between 6 weeks and 6 months old.

Symptoms of Parvo in dogs

The major symptoms associated with the intestinal form of parvo infection include: severe, bloody diarrhea, lethargy, less or no appetite, fever or low body temperature, vomiting, severe weight loss etc. The intestinal form of parvovirus affects the body's ability to absorb nutrients. A dog with parvo will quickly become dehydrated and weak from lack of nutrient and fluid absorption.Vomiting and diarrhea, often containing blood, are the most common reasons that dogs with parvovirus are taken to the veterinarian. The wet tissue of the mouth and eyes may become noticeably red, and the heart may beat too rapidly.When your veterinarian examines your dog’s abdominal area, your dog may respond due to pain or discomfort.

How does Parvo spread?

It is usually spread either through direct contact with an infected dog, or indirectly, by the fecal-oral route.

Parvovirus Can Live in Poop and in the Ground

Heavy concentrations of the virus are found in an infected dog’s stool. So when a healthy dog comes in contact with an infected dog’s stool (or anus), that dog can contract the disease.The virus can also be brought into a dog's environment by way of shoes that have come into contact with infected feces or other objects that were not adequately disinfected. There is evidence that the virus can live in ground soil for more than a year. It’s resistant to most cleaning products and even to weather changes.

Parvovirus Spreads Quickly in Kennel Environments

Breeding kennels and dog shelters that hold a large number of unvaccinated puppies are particularly hazardous places for parvovirus to spread. Shelters and rescue groups will often place puppies into foster homes until they are ready for adoption to minimize the risk of spreading parvovirus.

Even Vaccinated Puppies Could Get Parvovirus

Puppies require a series of vaccinations to create immunity to parvovirus. So if they miss a booster in the puppy vaccine series, they are prone to parvovirus.And if they do not continue to receive lifelong boosters as recommended by their veterinarian, their antibody levels can drop too low and they will be susceptible to parvovirus.

Some dog breeds are more vulnerable

For unknown reasons, certain dog breeds, such as Rottweilers, Pit Bulls, Labrador Retrievers, Doberman Pinschers, German Shepherds, are particularly vulnerable to the disease.


It is simple test that need few minutes to diagnose the disease. Most of the veterinary clinics in Sri Lanka have the test kit.


Owners should understand that there is no treatment for a viral disease. But the vet may give supportive treatment in order to support your dog.

Responsibility of the owner Vaccinate the dog

As soon as you get the dog you have to rush to the vet for advice and vaccinate you dog for all preventable diseases including Parvo. The owner should keep in mind the dates of repeat vaccination and get it done for your dog.

Manage the Parvo dog

Because there is no treatment you have to manage your dog with providing the fluid in small quantities such as glucose water and Jeewani.Get the advice of your vet and give supportive fluid at home a you can positively support the dog to fight with the disease.

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