Western Leader : January 27th 2012
www.aucklandnow.co.nz Friday, January 27, 2012 Does your business have a website? slide show map profile contact details www.roomoutsidelandscapes.co.nz Phone 09 837 0340 We can help you design a webpage. To find out HOW contact us NOW. If not you are missing out on Potential Customers of customers research online before making a purchase* *Source MYOB Study 2010-2011 66% Parvovirus upsurge By VANITA PRASAD Deadly virus: Young puppies, like this one with Massey Heights Veterinary Hospital's Michael Macdonald, are particularly vulnerable to parvovirus. This puppy has just had its first vaccination. Healthy now: Massey resident Monique Elliott with Taffy, who survived the parvovirus. Photos: VANITA PRASAD AN OUTBREAK of a poten- tially fatal dog virus spread- ing through Massey and Swanson has veterinarians afraid the highly contagious illness could spread to other regions. Michael Macdonald of Massey Heights Veterinary Hospital says he's seen four times the usual number of canine parvovirus cases at his clinic in the past month. We usually see about five to 10 cases in a year but we've had six to 10 confirmed cases in the past month. We've had more dogs come in showing symptoms but the owners haven't wanted to run the tests because it's expens- ive.'' Mr Macdonald says two dogs were put down because their owners couldn't afford the parvovirus treatment. The canine parvovirus is highly contagious but does not affect humans. It causes vomiting, diar- rhoea and depression. Dogs can be vaccinated as puppies and then have a 95 percent chance of not contrac- ting the virus. Mr Macdonald says there is a significant chance the virus will spread to other parts of Auckland. The danger is that it can survive for months in the environment after it's been released by the dog so your dog wouldn't need to have direct contact with a sick dog to get ill.'' About half the cases Mr Macdonald has seen in the last few weeks have been in adult dogs. That's pretty unusual for this virus because it's usually puppies that contract it because of their weaker immune systems.'' One of the adult dogs treated at Massey is Taffy, a three-and-a-half-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier cross owned by Monique Elliott. She had no energy, she wasn't wagging her tail or lifting her head -- she was on death's door,'' she says. Taffy was put on an intra- venous drip and kept in intensive care for five days until she recovered. Miss Elliott says Taffy has made a full recovery. Mobile veterinarian Gina Voglar says the cases in adult dogs may suggest the parvovirus strain is a particu- larly nasty one. It may have mutated to adapt to environmental factors like temperature and humidity.'' Ms Voglar says lower vaccination rates of dogs in west Auckland mean the virus could affect more dogs than in other parts of Auckland. Mr Macdonald and Ms Vog- lar advise dog owners to have animals fully vaccinated. Glen Eden's Auckland Vet- erinary Services says unvac- cinated dogs should avoid properties where there have been dogs with the virus for 12 to 18 months after the infection. PARVOVIRUS FACTS Canine parvovirus affects dogs of all ages but is more common in puppies. Without early diagnosis and urgent treatment death can occur quickly. In very young puppies death may occur without warning, as the virus attacks the heart. There is no cure for parvovirus so dogs are given treatments to try to boost their immune systems to clear the infection.
January 26th 2012
January 31st 2012