How to Treat Canine Coronavirus
How to Treat Canine Coronavirus
In puppies, canine coronavirus, also called CCV, is the second most common viral cause of diarrhea, with parvovirus being the most common.However, where parvovirus is often deadly, coronavirus is usually much milder and often self-limiting in adult dogs. Because puppies have weaker immune systems and lack the resilience of an adult to fight off infection, there is a greater risk of dehydration in a puppy which could endanger life.Learn how to treat the coronavirus so you can keep your dog healthy.
Take puppies to the vet.In puppies, the risk of complications from the coronavirus (CCV) is greater since they are more prone to dehydration. Any puppy with diarrhea that is off color or who is vomiting should be checked by a vet. Likewise any puppy that has diarrhea lasting more than 24 hours should be seen by a vet because of the risk of dehydration.
- To check for dehydration, grasp the skin of the scruff and lift it up away from the shoulders. When you release the skin it should spring immediately back into place. If you can see the skin settle back down or it takes a second or more, then the puppy is dehydrated.
- If you are able to detect dehydration this way, then the dog may need intravenous fluids to support his circulation and protect organ function.
- Your puppy may also have the respiratory type of CCV, which presents with symptoms that look like a respiratory infection. Take your puppy to the vet if he has any respiratory symptoms.
Treat dehydration in puppies at home.The most concerning type of CCV is the virus that presents with digestive symptoms. Because dogs with the coronavirus most often get diarrhea, dehydration is the most concerning result of a CCV infection. If you are concerned about dehydration but the puppy isn't clinically dehydrated, then make sure he is drinking. If he is reluctant to drink fluids, then gently syringe water into his mouth. Give a little bit at the time and often, but never squirt the fluid in quickly. Give the puppy a chance to swallow so that the fluid isn't accidentally inhaled into the lungs.
- If you have access to an electrolyte replacement fluid, such as Lectade or dioralyte, this will pass more easily across the dog's stomach wall than water and is better at preventing dehydration.
Feed the puppy bland food.If your pet has had diarrhea connected to the canine coronavirus, you should feed him a bland diet that is easy on his stomach. Feed little and often, such as four to six small portions spread over the day.
- A prescription enteritis diet is better than chicken and rice since it contains vitamins and minerals that a growing puppy needs.
Give the dog antibiotics only when there's an underlying condition.Though you may think your dog needs medicine to help him get better, your dog may not need it. Antibiotics are unlikely to make any difference since the infection is viral. However, if your puppy is sick, the vet may prescribe antibiotics to control any secondary infections he may have developed.
- For example, if your dog has the respiratory type of CCV, he may develop a respiratory infection that requires antibiotics.
Manage coronavirus in adult dogs.Coronavirus cannot be treated directly because it is a virus and drugs are ineffective at killing viruses. In adult dogs, the infection is usually not dangerous and the diarrhea will go away of its own accord after 12 days or so. In adult dogs, you should manage the diarrhea by providing plenty of fresh drinking water so that the dog can replace lost fluids and doesn't become dehydrated.
- In addition, a bland diet such as chicken and rice, or a commercial prescription diet designed to soothe gastroenteritis, can speed up resolution of the stomach upset. Divide the daily food allowance into four servings, and space the four meals out over the day.
Recognizing the Symptoms of Coronavirus
Watch for digestive issues.In one type of CCV, the principal sign of infection is diarrhea. The diarrhea is usually serious, explosive, and runny, but generally doesn’t contain mucous.The feces may be green, yellowish, or even orange. Your dog may also experience vomiting.
- The diarrhea usually lasts for a few days.
- This type of CCV affects the digestive system, and this is the most common type of CCV infection in dogs. Diarrhea from this type of CCV is the most common symptom in dogs.
- However, since diarrhea is a general symptom with many possible causes, just because the dog has an upset stomach doesn't mean he has coronavirus.
Check for respiratory problems.In the other type of CCV, respiratory problems are the most common symptoms. The respiratory ailments the virus may cause include coughing, sneezing, and nasal discharge.
- If your dog has other respiratory problems, he may end up with pneumonia.
- Respiratory coronavirus is another type of canine coronavirus. This virus affects the respiratory system. This type of CCV is not as common as the digestive type.
Monitor for other symptoms.While diarrhea and respiratory problems are the most common symptoms, your dog may present with other symptoms. For example, your dog may become lethargic or depressed. He may also run a fever or have a loss of appetite.
- These symptoms may point to other illnesses, so you should take your dog to the vet immediately to get him checked out.
- The symptoms for parvovirus and CCV are very similar. However, parvovirus is deadly, while CCV is not. You should always take your dog to the vet to get a correct diagnosis.
Identify how dogs get infected with CCV.Dogs become infected with the canine coronavirus by coming into contact with feces or saliva of dogs with a coronavirus infection. This can be through a food bowl, the feces of an infected dog, or direct contact with an infected dog.
- Try to prevent the coronavirus in your dog by getting him vaccinated and keeping him away from areas where dogs go to the bathroom.
- Adult dogs may develop diarrhea and possibly a reduced appetite, but often the infection is asymptomatic and the dog shows no signs because the immune system has successfully defended the body against the virus. This means your dog can come in contact with an infected dog without you knowing it.
Recognize which dogs are at the greatest risk.Those dogs at greatest risk are puppies under 12 weeks of age. Puppies are more vulnerable to dehydration, and because their immune system is still developing and therefore weak, the virus has a greater impact and the diarrhea can be more severe.
- Take care with puppies to make sure they have limited contact with anything that could spread the coronavirus.
Be aware that CCV isn’t fatal.Coronavirus is not fatal for most dogs. Many dogs even have an immunity to the virus. If the dog is in good health, the virus becomes an inconvenience. Diarrhea is the most common symptom for puppies or adults, and it lasts for a few days before the dog recovers.
- If the dog has a weak immune system, CCV can be a much worse condition. For example, puppies and older dogs are more vulnerable to complications.
QuestionMy dog has been diagnosed with coronavirus. What can I give him?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerI would keep him in the house at all times because it is highly contagious and go to your vet for greater solutions. Your vet can recommend the best treatment.Thanks!
QuestionDoes the CCV infection ever go away?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerDogs can still transmit CCV 6 months after the acute infection is over. According to the available literature, the body will eventually expel CCV, but you never know how long this will take. There are vaccinations, but this is not a required vaccination.Thanks!
Video: Dr. Becker Discusses Canine Coronavirus (CCV)
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