The lack of cold weather is causing the parvovirus to continue to exist causing the New Britain Animal Pound to shut down for the second time this year.
“We had parvo and we got it again Tuesday,” said Julie Swan, pound advocate and former animal control officer. “The dogs are quarantined for two weeks for an incubation period.”
The Parvovirus is a viral disease that affects puppies’ more than adult dogs. The disease attacks the white blood cells and affects the heart muscles leading to sudden death.
Symptoms include diarrhea (sometimes bloody), vomiting, lethargy, weakness and fever. It is highly contagious and is spread through exposure to feces. If you suspect your dog may have contracted the virus, it is best to bring your dog to a veterinarian immediately.
“It is out there. This is the fifth or sixth dog in New Britain that has had parvo,” said Swan. “People are walking their dog and if they are not vaccinated, it is highly contagious. Because we haven’t had extremely cold weather the virus still lives.”
Dogs that are up to date on their shots, in this case their distemper shot, are not in danger of getting the disease.
“We have been bleaching for two weeks straight,” said Swan. “If you step in dog pooh then bleach, bleach, bleach. Bleach your shoes or any area that might have been infected.”
Swan recommends that people just get their dog vaccinated. Call Petco or PetSmart, if you cannot avoid a vet, and get shots at a lower price.
“Try to avoid your dog eating poop or walk in it. That is where it spreads the most is through the feces,” said Swan. “A lot of people don’t vaccinate their dog. Parvo can live up to 3 years and we have no cold weather to kill it. Some that started last year can still be out there and are highly contagious.”
Swan said that if you try to save your dog from parvo, it will cost you thousands of dollars.
“It is $40 for a shot or thousands of dollars to save your best friend,” she said.
So far, none of the other dogs at the New Britain Dog Pound have shown signs of parvo. There are 17 dogs as the pound is full.
All the dogs will be available for adopting in two weeks if they do not have the virus. Dogs include pitbulls, beagles, pugs, a yorkie mix and a variety of other dogs
If you are interested in adopting a dog go to petfinder.com.
You can also call 860-223-5021. If the if mailbox is full, call the police department dispatch at 860-826-3000.