Health Alert: Coronavirus in Dogs

It's essential to pay close attention to the symptoms and call the vet immediately. 
Health Alert: Coronavirus in Dogs

Last update: 04 March, 2018

The increase of cases of coronavirus in dogs is scary! It worries veterinarians and owners all over the world. An early diagnosis is key.  his way, vets can prevent further complications in the animal’s health.

Coronavirus in dogs is mainly due to pets living in unhealthy environments. This has to do with so many stray puppies. In addition, it makes them particularly vulnerable and increases the exposure to germs.

Therefore, when adopting an animal, it is essential deworm your pet. And, update their immunization record. Prevention is the most efficient way of preserving their health.

What is Coronavirus in Dogs?

Coronavirus in dogs consists of an infection that affects their intestines. This disease is caused by a virus belonging to the Coronaviridae family, of the genus Alphacoronavirus.

sad abused dog

The pathogen penetrates, lodges itself and multiplies within the villi of the small intestine. Basically, there is no possibility of it progressing to a chronic state.

However, its percentage of infection is very high. It can extend itself to dogs of all ages, breeds and sizes. But it is more common in puppies.

A puppy’s body is more vulnerable to infection. Their immune system has not developed. And, they are not prepared to deal with the numerous microorganisms in the external environment. In addition, the intense cellular activity in the growth phase facilitates the replication of the virus.

When properly treated, this infection won’t leave long-lasting consequences in the body.

How Can a Pet Become Infected?

The most common form of transmission of coronavirus in dogs is fecal-oral. It mainly infects animals that have the habit of eating their own feces or the feces of other animals (coprophagy).

Coprophagia is a behavioral disorder that can be a symptom of certain diseases or of malnutrition.

What Are The Symptoms of Coronavirus in Dogs?

This disease’s incubation period varies between 24 and 36 hours. The symptoms appear quickly due to the rapid replication of the virus.

Dogs infected by coronavirus usually present the following symptoms very quickly:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue and lethargy
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Foul-smelling diarrhea that is usually accompanied by mucus and blood.

With the evolvement of the infectious processes, the animal can present dehydration and anorexia. They may also suffer from tremors and locomotion difficulties.

Many dogs have symptoms that are very subtle and difficult to identify. That is why it is important to go to the veterinarian immediately if you see any changes in your pet’s behavior.

Is There a Treatment for Coronavirus in Dogs?

We have observed that the coronavirus has an acute cycle. The disease must fulfill its natural course, so that the organism can fight and eliminate the virus.

Coronavirus treatment in dogs consists of palliative actions to alleviate the symptoms and provide a better quality of life for the animal.

The veterinarian is the only professional that can define and recommend the appropriate treatments for each animal. First, the symptoms and the infectious disease’s level of evolvement must be analyzed. Subsequently, the following administrations can be combined:

  • Fluids to combat dehydration
  • Appetite stimulants to prevent malnutrition and anorexia
  • Antivirals to help decrease viral replication
  • Antibiotics in case secondary bacterial infections develop
  • Medications to improve digestive process functions, protect the gastric mucosa and prevent vomiting and diarrhea
german shepherd at veterinarian

How Can Coronavirus in Dogs Be Prevented?

Responsible tenure is the best way to prevent Coronavirus in dogs. It is essential to respect their vaccination schedule and deworm them periodically, beginning when their puppies, to avoid any infectious process.

Maintaining a balanced diet and practicing regular physical activity are essential for the healthy development of all species. It is also essential to opt for reinforced hygiene habits in relation to the pets

Although not lethal, Coronavirus in dogs causes a lot of discomfort in the animal’s day to day life. Fulfilling the necessary preventive measures can save your pet’s life, and provide an abundance of happy moments for both of you.