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NancyH, Dog Expert:Rescue, Train,Breed,Care
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience:  30+ yrs dog home vet care & nursing, rescue, behavior&training, responsible show breeding, genetics
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My one year old dog contracted Parvo 2 months ago and died

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My one year old dog contracted Parvo 2 months ago and died from it at the hospital. My vet and I took the breeder's word about his innoculations and gave my dog his remaining shots based on the breeder's statements. My question is two-fold. Is it possible for a fully vaccinated 1year old dog to contract parvo? If so, how? Also, I am interested in purchasing another dog and am currently considering a 7 month old puppy and a 4 year old dog. Both have had all of their shots. Would both of these dogs be protected from Parvo? I keep getting different answers from different people (vets & breeders). I also have other dogs at home. Two of them are puppies who also contracted parvo but survived after 2 weeks of hospitalization. I know not to bring the puppies out in public until they have had all of their shots but how about my adult dogs? Are they contagious to other dogs?

Your adult dogs that have been vaccinated (adult includes 7 month old) should be immune from the disease.

You can bleach the yard quite easily with a hose end applicator as it only takes 1 part bleach to about 30 parts water to kill parvo.

Here is a really good site on parvo so you have solid info

As long as the dogs you are considering have had a booster shot after the age of 4 months they should also be fine.

The pups that were ill and survived can shed virus in their stool for a month and so should be considered contagious for that long. You'd want to clean up stools right away and possibly bleach potty areas with that dilute bleach solution regularly.

Hope this helps you!

NancyH and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.

Thanks but my question is more about why, how and if my fully vaccinated 1 year old dog could get Parvo? Also, I haven't purchased the two dogs I wrote about yet because I need the above questions answered before I procede. Losing another dog to Parvo is not something I want to go through again. Is the Parvo something I need to tell the breeder about? I find that there is a lot of ignorance out there about Parvo, even among breeders. Still, my main concern is the safety of the dogs I am considering; I don't want to bring new dogs into my home if a fully vaccinated dog can come down with Parvo.

A fully vaccinated dog can die of parvo for a couple of reasons.

In this breed there can be dogs with faulty immune responses (as there can be in all dogs but this breed does have some immune system issues). So that is one possibility that the dog was vaccinated but was not capable of mounting an immune response.

Another possibility is the vaccines were faulty. It doesn't happen often but improper shipping, handling and storage can make a vaccine non viable and out of date vaccines may not produce an immune response.

Of all your other dogs only the pups that were not fully vaccinated got ill so that tells you their vaccines worked.

You could consider boostering the dogs you are considering and then waiting 2 weeks after that before you brought them in but if they are properly vaccinated their immune systems should keep the parvo, even if exposed to it, from doing any harm.

I would discuss the problem with the dog you lost with that dog's breeder just in case others in the line have any immune issues.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.

What about titer tests? I have heard of these but don't know much about them.

Would a titer test also tell if a dog has the required antibodies? Do you think a breeder would be upset if I insisted on paying for one as a condition for the purchase? Also, would a reputable breeder be willing to let a prospective buyer speak her veterinarian and get health records prior to purchasing the dog? I don't want to seem presumptious to the breeder but want a healthy dog.

All a titer shows is that the dog's system has responded to an exposure. If there has been no recent exposure the titer may tell you nothing.

You can read up on titers here

I don't think any responsible breeder should have any issues with you requesting vet record confirmation of care. Where I live to sell a dog you have to have your vet write up a health certificate within 10 days before sale to give a status on the dog's health and list vaccinations etc.

The vet should be willing, with breeder permission to give a copy of the dog's health records or the breeder can get one for you from their vet on that dog.

I suspect the dog you lost was a situation where no one knew the dog was not protected. If the dog had the shots then immunity can be expected, as it so rarely fails, but it does fail sometimes and the failure could be in the dog's system or in the vaccine it was given.

You might want to avoid purchasing a close relative of the dog you lost.


Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thanks! I am pretty sure you were paid but just wanted to make sure as this is the first time I've ever used this site.

You are very welcome and yes your accept paid me!
I just have to remember to close the question after replying or the site sends out more messages (sorry if I forgot its a new procedure we have to do).

I wish you luck with the pups recovery and finding a suitable dog.