Lynden veterinary clinic offers tips to pet owners

Veterinarians from Kulshan Veterinary Hospital are warning pet owners to prepare their pets for viruses this winter.

The most prevalent infection impacting dogs is canine parvovirus. Parvo, as it’s called, is a highly contagious, life-threatening viral infection that most
frequently affects unvaccinated puppies.

The virus is shed in the stool of infected dogs. It’s extremely resilient and can live in the environment for a long time, according to staff at Kulshan Veterinary Hospital.

Typical signs of parvo include lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea. Untreated, most dogs that contract parvo die due to dehydration and secondary infections that occur as the intestinal lining is destroyed by the virus.

In western Washington, fleas are the most common external parasite affecting dogs. The region’s mild climate makes it easy for fleas to reproduce exponentially, resulting in severe infestations that result in itchy, uncomfortable pets and
frustrated owners.

Several effective topical and oral flea preventatives are available that allow owners to keep their pets from suffering
needlessly.

According to the most recent guidelines published by the American Animal Hospital Association, distemper, adenovirus, parvo and rabies vaccinations are recommended for all puppies and adult dogs.

Optional vaccinations (those needed by dogs dependent on their lifestyle and potential exposure) include Leptospirosis Bordetella (kennel cough), Lyme’s disease and parainfluenza.

The American Animal Hospital Association does not recommend vaccinating against Corona.

Vaccination schedules vary based on a pet’s lifestyle, particular vaccine products and overall pet health. An appropriate individualized vaccination schedule for every dog is best determined by conversing with your pet’s veterinarian after a complete physical exam and discussion of pet lifestyle.

Courtesy of Kulshan Veterinary Hospital

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