Treatment And Spreading Of Canine Distemper

Canine distemper is so serious that dogs can experience relapses during their entire lives or even worse, they can die. It mainly affects puppies or older dogs who have weak immune system
Treatment And Spreading Of Canine Distemper

Last update: 10 November, 2018

Canine distemper is a disease that’s caused by a highly contagious virus. It usually affects puppies and, if not treated in time, causes irreversible effects or can even lead to death. In this article, you can learn about this pathology, its contagion, and treatment.

Canine distemper contagion

This disease is extremely dangerous and, in many cases, can be lethal for young pets or pets that have a weak immune system. It’s a very a contagious viral pathology that affects the respiratory, digestive, and nervous systems.

Dogs contract this disease by having contacts from bodily secretions such as tears, saliva, and mucus. When a dog sneezes or coughs, they spread small drops of this disease into the environment that can harbor viruses.

This transmission is more likely among puppies that are in contact with other puppies at a young age. However, that doesn’t mean you can prevent your dog from contracting this disease just by not taking them out for walks.

This virus is so contagious that just by unknowingly playing with another infected dog, you can get the virus caught on your clothes or hands. That’s why it’s so important to clean your hands well after touching another dog.

There are many prevention measures you can take if you have a puppy at home. As a first step, they must be vaccinated according to the vaccination schedule the vet gives you.

Also, it’s important to pay close attention to the other dogs your puppy interacts with, especially if they have any of the symptoms of this disease.

What are the symptoms of canine distemper?

A fever is the first sign that there’s a problem. However, this isn’t the only symptom because distemper attacks several areas of the body.

Sick dog with canine distemper

At the respiratory level, the dog will begin to cough, sneeze and have a runny nose. They may also develop conjunctivitis, which is inflammation of the eyelids and nose with a constant yellow-colored discharge.  Mucus makes it difficult to breathe and, if the virus reaches the lungs, then it could lead to pneumonitis.

As for the digestive system, the virus causes vomiting and diarrhea due to severe gastroenteritis. If the dog only shows this symptom, you shouldn’t immediately think it’s distemper. Most likely they got it from something they ate.

This disease can have severe consequences on the nervous system. If the animal survives, they may experience relapses for their entire life. Sudden attacks, convulsions, nervous tics, muscle spasms, and paralysis are quite frequent.

Is there treatment for canine distemper?

Currently, this viral infection doesn’t have a specific and effective treatment. Regardless, if you think that your dog is infected, you should take him to the vet immediately.

Dog getting treated for canine distemper

The vet will be responsible for alleviating the symptoms and keeping the dog from suffering too much. Some expectorants and antibiotics will help eliminate phlegm; other drugs will stop the vomiting and coughing.

Other dietary supplements will be used to improve the animal’s health. It’s recommended that the dog consumes more vitamin B if they have nervous tics.

Be very careful that your dog doesn’t get dehydrated, especially when they don’t feel like drinking water. Also, continuously sanitize their nose and eyes.

If your dog is experiencing a loss of appetite, then try to get them to eat at least a little wet canned food. This will be more appetizing for them than dry food. Pampering and giving your dog plenty of attention at this time is also very important to help them feel better.

The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.