It was around 3 o’ clock the morning, 2nd Jan ‘18, when I woke up to the worst gagging sounds that I have ever heard. From that sound, I immediately knew that something was very wrong. I got out of bed to assist my 15-week-old Doberman puppy who was trying to throw up. Her tummy was as tight as a tennis ball. She was for some time, but nothing came out. She looked so terribly uncomfortable.
The cramps calmed down and she went back to sleep for about two hours. I woke up to find our pup weeing in the room, something she had already learned not to do. As I was cleaning it up when she ran downstairs. I got to the bottom of the stairs she made a poop by the back door, and there it was very clear against the white tiles, blood in her stool.
I rushed her to Tygerberg Animal Hospital’s Bellville branch. It was still after hours, and the vet that who worked throughout the night made the diagnoses. “It’s Parvo…” I thought my heart stopped for a few seconds, as my eyes started welling up. We were so careful, we didn’t take her to any public places, and she was up to date on her She was hospitalised for 5 days before I could take her home, and when she came home she was just skin and bones.
What did I learn about Parvo during the course of her illness?
Vaccinations against Parvo gives the pup a resistance to the infection with a strong immunity developing after a course of three vaccinations.
As the days passed and we shared the sad news, I found that many people didn’t really know what parvo is, how it is transmitted nor how serious it is or even that you can have your puppy vaccinated for it.
Many people thought it is contracted from cats, not too surprisingly as it is commonly referred to as “cat flu”. Parvovirus is transmitted between dogs can be transmitted by a person or dog coming in contact with an infected dog’s faeces.
I never expected the severity of the symptoms. Apart from wasting away, she also vomited consistently and had severe diarrhoea.
I should have had pet insurance. I won’t mention the total treatment cost, not that it really matters. If we had taken out an insurance policy it would have been a much less stressful experience. If a puppy is up to date on her/his vaccines you can claim for the treatment cost from most of the comprehensive pet insurance plans and companies.
I would like to thank all the staff from Tygerberg Animal Hospital for the excellent care that they gave to our puppy. She definitely would not have made it if it was not for your dedication and continuous efforts to keep her alive.
From a very thankful dog lover!