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10 Insane (But Totally True) Facts About Parvo

When it comes to dealing with potentially fatal diseases like Parvo, being equipped with adequate and up-to-date information is the way to go. The more you know about the virus, the easier it will be for you to keep your dog safe and protected.

With that said, let’s get right into these 10 insane, but totally true, facts about Parvo.

Fact # 1: Parvo is impossible to kill with household cleaners.

10 Insane (But Totally True) Facts About ParvoYep. Lysol is no match for the incredibly tough Canine Parvovirus. It’s extremely resistant to common household cleaners and can survive for over a year on a variety of surfaces or objects, such as dog bowls, carpets, shoes, and dog kennels.

The only way to kill the Canine Parvovirus is to clean all infected surfaces and objects with diluted bleach. Mix half a cup of bleach in one gallon of water and use it to disinfect your home and yard.

You can use the same bleach mixture to wash non-porous objects, like stainless steel dog bowls, and fabrics, such as clothing, carpets, or rugs. To make the dilution process safer, more convenient, and less messy, you can try using bleach tablets or crystals. You can view  some of our favorite ones here.


Fact # 2: Parvo is everywhere!

10 Insane (But Totally True) Facts About ParvoIt’s true. We can disinfect our homes, our things, and our yard, but it’s practically impossible to get rid of parvo in the environment. According to TLC Animal Hospital, “The goal of cleaning and disinfection is to reduce (not eliminate) the number of active viruses in the environment.”

That means your dog can contract the Canine Parvovirus even in places you consider to be safe, like dog parks, or grooming salons. They can even get it by drinking out of stagnant bodies of water, like ponds or lakes, since its a regular hangout for parvo-carrying critters and wildlife. To be safe, always bring water for your dog whenever you take them outside. If you haven’t already, get yourself a portable pet water bottle. It’ll make things SO MUCH easier for you. We absolutely love these ones.

So, be sure to vaccinate your dogs and keep them healthy. That way, their immune system stays strong enough to fend off parvo no matter where they go.


Fact # 3: Parvo can survive in extreme temperatures.

Think Parvo won’t survive through winter? Think again. The very hardy Canine Parvovirus can withstand even the most extreme temperatures and weather conditions. It’s resistant to temperatures as high as 100 degrees Celsius and can survive in freezing temperatures during winter.


Fact # 4: It’s possible for an infected dog to show no symptoms for up to two weeks.

The Canine Parvovirus takes typically about five to seven days to incubate, but in some cases, it takes as short as three days or as long as fourteen. That means, your dog can contract Parvo without you even knowing about it for up to two weeks because of the lack of symptoms.


Fact # 5: It’s possible for parvo to infect vaccinated dogs.

10 Insane (But Totally True) Facts About ParvoContrary to common belief, Parvo vaccinations don’t provide 100% protection from the virus. In some cases, vaccinated dogs still contract Parvo, and there’s more than one reason for that.

First, vaccines are highly sensitive to temperature. Once they become warm, they become inactive and therefore, ineffective. This can happen when proper transporting instructions aren’t followed during the transfer of the vaccines from the manufacturers to the distributors.

Other things that can prevent vaccines from taking effect include compromised health, and the presence of maternal antibodies.

If a dog is sick during vaccination, their body won’t be able to respond the way it’s supposed to. So, your dog should always be in tip-top shape when getting their shots. It’s also important to make sure that they’re old enough so that they don’t have their mom’s antibodies anymore. Maternal antibodies will prevent your dog’s immune system from developing their own antibodies to the virus.


Fact # 6: It’s possible for the first parvo shot to make your dog more vulnerable to parvo.

10 Insane (But Totally True) Facts About ParvoThe reason for this is because dogs usually receive their first vaccines during puppyhood. So, it’s not impossible for them to still have maternal antibodies in their system.

The maternal antibodies fight the weakened virus found in the vaccine, while the vaccine itself  weakens the dog’s immune system. This makes them more susceptible to Parvo for some time. However, there’s no need to fret because dogs receive booster shots for this exact reason. Once they’ve completed their Parvo vaccination series, they’ll be protected from the virus.


Fact # 7: A new strain of parvo is airborne and can kill a dog within 6 hours!

There are currently three known strains of Parvo: 2a, 2b, and 2c. It was discovered that the lastest strain, which is 2c, is so virulent that it can kill dogs within a day—sometimes only within six hours! Now, it’s also believed that the strain may be airborne.


Fact # 8: The Canine Parvovirus came from the Feline Parvovirus.

Researchers believe that the Canine Parvovirus emerged from the Feline Parvovirus, also known as Feline Panleukopenia Virus, through natural genetic mutation.


Fact # 9: Some strains of parvo can infect cats.

A lot of researchers already assumed that the Canine Parvovirus mutated from the Feline Parvovirus, so they weren’t shocked when some strains of the virus started infecting cats.

Some studies also found that cats can be carriers of the Canine Parvovirus, and shed the virus through their feces for a long time.


Fact # 10: When a dog recovers from Parvo, they develop permanent immunity to the virus.

Parvo may be hard to beat, but it’s completely doable! With timely professional treatment and proper supportive care, infected dogs can, and do, recover from Parvo.

Once the battle is over, it’s over for good! Parvo survivors automatically develop permanent immunity to the virus.



Have you ever encountered a Parvo survivor? What’s their story? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!