CAA Urging owners to vaccinate after parvo outbreak
Capricorn Animal Aid (CAA) are urging pet owners to take Parvovirus seriously following an unusually large outbreak of the highly-infectious disease across Rockhampton.
CAA say the deadly disease has become a serious risk for Rockhampton pets in recent months especially those coming from the Rockhampton pound.
CAA rescued Mastiff X puppy Sunni from the pound last Friday and the four-month old dog began vomiting blood on Saturday.
Thanks to generous donations by the local community Sunni was placed in emergency care where she tested positive for parvo.
Sunni was in a serious condition yesterday but carer Hollie Veall is hopeful she will be home by the end of the week.
The not-for-profit charity are overwhelmed with the community support for Sunni but want to see more owners vaccinating.
Ms Veall says she is committed to giving Sunni the second chance at life she deserves and is shocked at the number of infected dogs in vet care.
"She just wants to be held and loved and has had lots of offers of a home. She will likely be adopted once she is well," she said.
"It was horrible to see the amount of dogs in isolation due to parvo. These puppies were healthy and are now fighting for their lives."
"Something has to change, we have to do better than this."
CAA President Katina Kilpatrick says they have asked council to better their facilities to prevent spreading the disease to healthy impounded dogs.
"The current pound is not designed to manage infectious diseases such as parvo due to inadequate drainage, direct contact with infected dogs and other issues surrounding the layout and floor surfaces," she said.
"New designs will need to take these issues into consideration."
She adds that responsibility also falls on owners who need to be aware when taking their pets on public walking tracks and to local parks.
"I see people take their dogs to ovals and public places and I worry that people aren't aware of the risk," she said.
She says early vaccination is the key to keeping pets' safe and avoiding costly vet bills.
Parvo is highly-resistant and easily spread from shoes, animal faeces and direct contact with other dogs.
Parvo attacks the immune systems and gastrointestinal tract with symptoms including:
- Loss of appetite
- Diarrhoea and bloody stools
Dogs can be vaccinated from six-weeks and older dogs can also be vaccinated.
Please contact your local vet for information on what is right for your pet.