Survey Shows Dog Owners Misunderstand Parvo
Respondents see parvovirus as a high-risk disease, but know less about treatment, prevention.
Posted: March 29, 2010, 2 a.m. EDT
A national survey of dog owners indicates that 84 percent understand that canine parvovirus (CPV) is a “high-risk” disease threat to dogs. Respondents were less informed about the disease, how it spreads and when dogs should be vaccinated, according to the survey conducted for Merial Brand pet vaccines by WMS Marketing.
In addition, the survey showed that 42 percent of owners believe that dogs recovering from CPV can’t transmit the disease to other dogs. However, recovering dogs may serve as carriers and shed the virus periodically.
Dog owners were also mistaken about the signs of CPV, as a majority (89 percent) agreed it targets the central nervous system. In fact, CPV is an enteric disease and no studies have shown it to affect the central nervous system.
While many sick dogs display no clinical signs of CPV, they can experience lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, vomiting and diarrhea.
Bob Menardi, veterinary spokesperson for Merial, said preventive care and protection is hard to accomplish when dog owners don’t have a grasp on the basic attributes and possible effects of this potentially fatal disease. “This survey allows us an opportunity to educate dog owners on the clinical signs, treatment facts and preventive measures for canine parvovirus,” he said.
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