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CDV is a very contagious virus that can cause severe disease in dogs that are not fully vaccinated. CDV does not infect humans. The virus causes a variety of symptoms including:
These same symptoms can be caused by many other illnesses, so testing is required to confirm CDV. Cost for the test varies by clinic and usually takes a few days for the result to come back.
Vaccinate your pets, and get booster vaccinations as recommended by your veterinarian. This gives the dog protective immunity and will prevent infection.
If your dog is frequently exposed to other dogs in group settings (dog parks, boarding kennels, etc.), it is critical to maintain your pet's vaccinations.
CDV spreads like a common cold. Some dogs may not have any noticeable symptoms.
Infected dogs spread the virus through close contact with other dogs, so group settings present a higher level of risk. When the infected dog sneezes or coughs, dogs in the area are exposed to the virus.
Dogs also can be exposed through contact with urine, feces, vomit or saliva, or through contact with contaminated objects, such as shared water bowls and grooming tools.
There is no specific treatment or medication for CDV. Dogs with CDV will most often need general supportive care: fluids, medications to help with symptoms, antibiotics to address any secondary infections.
Early treatment can greatly improve the outcome. If neurological symptoms are present (seizures, tremors, head tilt, etc.), the chance of a full recovery is less likely.
Dogs infected with CDV should receive treatment as soon as possible and should be isolated from other dogs immediately to prevent risk of infection to other dogs.