Canine Disease Prevention
A First Aid Guide For Your Dog

Being aware of new symptoms or patterns of behavior can be helpful indicates of internal disease.  Of course, monitoring external wounds and injuries is also important in combating infection, etc.  Diarrhea, constipation, fever, shivering, runny nose, dry hot nose, runny or watery eyes, coughing, increased or ravenous appetite with no weight gain, loss of appetite, vomiting, increased urination, restlessness,  nervousness, and any indication of pain are indicates of serious problems.  Always check with your veterinarian if these symptoms are present or persist.

Certain preventative vaccines should be given from youth through adult life. Breeders should have the beginning puppy shots already administered as a series. The following diseases or viruses can be prevented with vaccinations to insure a healthy and long life.

Canine Distemper Virus is a widespread, often fatal disease.  Spread of bodily fluids through food and water causes infection.  All dogs should be vaccinated against distemper starting with distemper-measles vaccination at 6 - 9 weeks of age.

Infectious Canine Hepatitis Virus (Canine Adenovirius type -1 and type -2) is an acute liver infection.  Hepatitis caused by CAV-1 (adenovirius type-1) may cause severe kidney damage or death. CAV- 2 (adenovirius typ-2) causes respiratory infection and is an important factor in kennel cough.  Symptoms include fever, loss of appetite, depression, coughing, and tender abdomen. Signs of liver disease (jaundice, vomiting, hepatic encephalopathy) may occur.  In the severest cases, bleeding disorders cause hematomas of the mouth.

Canine Bordetella is the bacterium that causes bronchitis and may contribute to kennel cough (inflammation of the upper respiratory system). This bacterial infection is spreads through coughing and sneezing.  It can occur alone or in combination with distemper, adenovirus type - 2 infection, parainfluenza, and other respiratory problems.

Canine Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection spread by urine contaminated water.  Incubation period ranges from 2-20 days.  Symptoms include enlargement of the spleen, jaundice, fever, vomiting, failure to eat, reduced urine output, dark urine, inactivity, and nephritis.  Permanent kidney and liver damage is a possible result. The disease is easily spread to other animals, and less commonly, to humans.

Canine Parainfluenza is another cause of kennel cough, affecting the lower respiratory system.  Although parainfluenza is often a mild respiratory infection in healthy dogs, it can be severe in puppies or debilitated dogs.

Canine Parvovirus infection is a disease affecting the lymphatic system and gastrointestinal tract causing severe dehydrating diarrhea in dogs of varying ages. Other symptoms include loss of appetite, lethargy, fever, and vomiting.  It is spread by contact with canine feces. Parvovirus infection is especially dangerous for puppies.

Rabies is a virus that causes inflammation of the brain.  After neurological symptoms have occurred, Rabies is almost always fatal.  It is transmitted through contact with saliva, usually via a bite.  All mammals are at risk, including humans.  Symptoms include flu-like sickness, then uncharacteristic aggression and anxiousness.

Canine Coronavirus is a highly contagious disease affecting the upper respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts.  This intestinal disease causes vomiting and diarrhea in dogs of all ages. Particularly in puppies, dehydration from coronavirus infection can be life-threatening.

Remember the information given is only a guide and you should always check with your veterinarian if you think there is a problem or before administering any medication.