The Canine Distemper Virus is a common illness that many dogs suffer from at an early age, including personal protection dogs. This disease is highly contagious and affects a dog’s gastrointestinal, respiratory, and central nervous system. This disease usually affects non-vaccinated dogs that are found in pet shelters and streets. Three to six months old puppies are most susceptible of catching this virus, which is in most cases fatal.
How does the virus spread?
Because CDV is highly contagious, it can easily spread through an infected dog’s feces, urine, and mucus. However, the bacteria of this virus travel in the air and can easily infect other dogs if they inhale such air. Once this virus attacks a dog, it takes several days for the dog to be fully recovered. After the dog’s recovery, others are not at a risk of catching this virus.
It is also best to clean the house using disinfectants that can help minimize the spread of this harmful virus. This virus can also affect humans if they aren’t immunized against measles.
Noticeable Symptoms of CDV in Protective Dogs
The symptoms of CDV are quite like flu with runny nose, eye discharge, and loss of appetite. However, the symptoms of this virus aren’t limited to just these. There are many other noticeable symptoms that a dog infected by CDV suffers from including:
• Low white blood cell count
• Abnormal tooth enamel
• Hardening of feet pads
• Partial or complete paralysis
• Muscle spasms
• Inability to coordinate the muscles
• Distorted mental abilities
Some dogs develop neurological disabilities in CDV, which can cause inflammation in the brain and spinal cord. These neurological complications often result in lifelong illness or death. Distemper is not easily diagnosed and there are no definitive tests for this virus. However, a vet will conduct routine tests, observe the symptoms, and check the dog’s distemper vaccination record.
Treating Distemper in a Family Protection Dog
CDV doesn’t have a cure but its impact can be controlled by treating the varied symptoms with the help of medication and care. This type of treatment is often known as supportive treatments and includes:
• Anti-seizure medication.
• IV fluids.
• Steroids to prevent seizures.
It is best to keep your protection dog healthy and safe from diseases like these by getting it vaccinated. Once your dog is six weeks old, it should be vaccinated for CDV, parvovirus, adenovirus 2, parainfluenza, and coronavirus. These shots are often given till the dog is 16 weeks old. In order to keep your family protection dog protected from harmful diseases like distemper, owners should go for boosters after one year of vaccination. However, your vet will conduct blood tests to find out whether the dog needs another shot or not. Blood test is becoming a common way of finding out the antibody levels in the dog’s body because over vaccination can also cause a lot of harm to the dog’s health.
If you want to ensure that your dog is safe from viruses like these, you will need to keep your dog up-to-date on its vaccination schedule. Distemper doesn’t have a cure and can be fatal. Therefore, be cautious and do your best to prevent your dog from getting attacked by the virus.