Parvo Update & Map for the Oak Flats/Albion Park Area Autumn 2017

The veterinary clinics in the immediate area have pooled their data to provide a list of the streets with positively identified Parvo cases.  Some households have had multiple animals affected, some streets have had more than one household affected.

We are aware that there have been reports of Parvo cases on other streets, especially in the Warilla area; but as we have not been able to find the medical records of these patients to substantiate those reports, those streets have not been included in the tally below. The Tally records the real time pain, suffering, and 70% death rate of the current flare- up. The return of this horrendous disease to our area is real, is a current event and is not any half -man, half-beast made- up story.

If you have had an animal test positive for Parvo in our area in the last 8 weeks and you live on a street not included below, we are happy to add the information to the tally.

(Thank you to those who have updated us with Lindwall. Johnston St and Clematis Crescent. We have logged one dog from each of these 3 streets so far. If you are the owner of any other dog affected off these streets or any others, we would be appreciative if you could share that information with us)

Please note the age range of the dogs affected-from 11 weeks months to 13 years. There is an urban myth that old dogs are immune from Parvo. Parvo respects no age, no breed, and no area, it will take any unvaccinated dog of any age, at any time. The only weapon we have against it is full and regular vaccination which will completely protect the dog at ALL ages of their life.

Once Parvo is in a yard or house, it remains a risk in that property for a minimum of one year (some cases suggest longer, but a year is the minimum.) No new animals should be introduced to these properties for several months and then only 6 months or older age, adult fully vaccinated dogs should enter or be introduced to live in those properties.

As several of the affected houses are known rental properties, the risk remains that is the current tenants move, the next tenant’s animals are unknowingly at risk. It is a good rule of thumb that if you intended to move into a property, as either owner or tenant, your own pets should be up to date with their vaccinations at least TWO weeks before you move into the property.

There is no “one standard vaccination that fits all dogs” rule. The vaccinations your pet requires depends on where you live, the disease risk level, the age of your dog, the breed and the present health of your dog and the vaccine brand your vet chooses to use.  What vaccine to use is a conversation each Owner needs to have with their own Vet.  You cannot compare what a vet in perhaps Nowra uses with what a Vet in our area or in Sydney might use. The vaccines have to fit the animal, not the other way around, so please don’t compare what one vet does or doesn’t do.

  Autumn Parvo Disease Outbreak Map and Log.

1) Affected Streets where Parvo cases have been positively identified on clinical signs and laboratory testing.

  • Fisher St,     Oak Flats
  • Central Ave,  Oak Flats
  • Landy Drive, Mt Warrigal
  • Linum Place, Barrack Heights
  • Lendine St,    Barrack Heights
  • Kingsway,      Barrack Heights
  • Clematis Cres, Barrack Heights
  • Johnston St,    Warilla
  • Lindwall St,     Warilla
  • Luarina Way, Albion Park

2) Age of dogs affected.

  • 11 weeks  (1)
  • 14 weeks (1)
  • 7 months (1)
  • 8 months (2)
  • 9 months (2)
  • 11 months(1)
  • 18months (3)
  • 3 years      (1)
  • 5 years      (3)
  • 13 years    (1)

3) 70% ( the majority) of the dogs above did not survive.

Questions & Answers

1)Question:If your dog is vaccinated is your dog safe or is it best to stay clear until it’s all cleared up.
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic If in date, no problems, I have yet to see a fully vaccinated dog get this disease in the 30years I have been fighting it.
2)Question …but those streets aren’t near us anyway -so not a concern?
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic Unfortunately, the RSPCA held their Millions Paws Walk right in the middle of our area last week. We know unvaccinated dogs and young pups did attend that walk. We also know folks traveled to our area to take part in the walk. The virus can be transferred on clothing etc-(more info on that below) so we are asking everyone to take notice and if in doubt at all about your pet’s vaccination, ring your vet and check.

3)Info;We lost our 11 mth old to Parvo  last month(Warilla).

Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic Thank you for sharing the information, it will help others realise this is happening in our area. This strain is not a new strain but seems to be very aggressive, the death rate is much higher than we have seen for a while. Make sure no one tries to give you another pup too soon otherwise you could face the same sadness all over again.
 4)Question Is there any mention of the Shellcove Shellharbour area. We have a new pup and would hate for him to get sick
Keep him indoors/back yard. No walks until 2 weeks after his final puppy vaccine. Take your shoes off at the front door as you carry it on your shoes esp. The virus is mostly transmitted via faecal contamination, a tiny gram of dog faeces on your shoe can contain many particles of the virus so reduce traffic of
5)Question: We live one street away from one of the affected streets and before seeing this we walked our dogs thru one of the sections of that street. All of our dogs are vaccinated but is there still a big chance they could have got it? Just a worried owner 😖.
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic Mitchell, if the dogs are fully vaccinated you have zero worries. We are asking dog owners not to walk in these areas to reduce spreading the disease to unvaccinated dogs. What we do ask if you confirm with your vet your dogs are in-date. We had a few poor souls yesterday who logged into their client records with us via our website and discovered their pets were not in date as they thought. So don’t worry but do ring or double check with your vet.
6) Question: I believe our pups are vaccinated against but in my line of work I’m going to houses all over and am very cautious even though we have vaccinated our little ones. Is there a blood test or other tests that can be done to check vaccine levels/whether more vaccine is required?
Answer : Oak Flats Vet
I found titre testing to be spectacularly useless when we used it at the height of the epidemic in the UK. Nothing about the current tests make me any more confident. The animals don’t like to have blood tests, it costs money that could have been better spent, and the test result may give you a false sense of security. If your vet is happy they are vaccinated in-date then that is fine. As vets we handle other folks dogs all the time. We make a point of leaving our shoes in one area at home.We change and shower when we get home anyway, but also do so before we mix with our own pets if we have any concerns about patients we have seen at work that day. The workaround for you is to do the same or have a úniform/shoes you use on these visits and then change and shower before you handle your own pets
7)Question: can parvo be spread via people walking in outbreak areas – that then go home to their dogs.
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic
Oak Flats Veterinary Clinic Yes, it can be spread on feet and clothing which is one of the reasons Parvo is so expensive to treat as everything a vet uses on the cases has to be incinerated or disposed of afterwards, all the beds and blankets, bowls, leads, the protective suits, are all single use on that patient.We have to isolate the cases, dedicate nursing staff to the parvo areas and the hospitals go through boxes of gloves and shoes and aprons and a powerful chemical called Parvicide, and that is a cost aside from getting around to treating the actual dog!. The condition is also very very painful, even if your dog survives, it still suffers a lot in the interim so it is important you seek treatment early on. BUT all of that is avoided with a simple vaccine.
Side-effects of Vaccination.
The risk of death from Parvo is about 70-80%, the risk of a side-effect from a vaccine is about 0.003% and most of those reactions are mild. The true severe allergic reaction is treatable and the dog recovers in hours.
Not so with parvo, Recovery, if the dog is lucky, takes days.
Folks talk about vets making money from vaccination. The facts are that vaccination is about 7% of our role, we would make a lot more money from letting Parvo run wild and then treating the ill animals. But we don’t, we push the vaccination because as vets and nurses, there is Nothing more destroying in your work day than to see an animal in agony that could have been effortlessly prevented with up to date vaccination.
We became vets to prevent suffering, not play catch up to a vile disease like Parvo.
We almost had it beat, had it so dogs in our area were free of this cruel condition, that staff  and clients were free of the awful stench that used to fill up vet hospitals from parvo in-patients, free of using toxic chemicals in our workplace just so we could kill the virus (and hopefully not the Nurse’s lungs), free from the huge eco-waste that parvo is as we have to incinerate so much that would normally be re-usable, and free from watching helplessly and heartbrokenly, as the best drugs in the world struggled to help keep the dog alive and  also free  from the futile knowing all of this was preventable by  superbly effective and  very, very safe vaccines.
I am over being polite and P.C. and tolerating the anti-vaccinators, who in the late 2000s  really pushed to decrease dog vaccinations. I warned in 2010 that titre testing was as much a waste of time as it had always been and that the viruses would be back in force by 2016. Look where we are now: Cat Panleuc or Cat Distemper and Canine Parvo back as if it was the 1980s all over again!  
In 2017, all you now need to know if you own a dog is : Get it vaccinated and KEEP it vaccinated.
Update 31/05/2017,

Thank you to all the wonderful pet warriors who share our facebook post or this page. Thanks to you, Facebook has spread the virus of knowledge faster than the Parvo virus can spread. While great vaccines are our first weapon against this disease, it seems a new 21st weapon may also be Facebook helping map disease outbreaks locally and in real time. Our Illawarra model used here could be of use on other veterinary and human health outbreaks. On behalf of all the pets and nurses and vets you have helped save from dealing with the soul breaking disease that is any parvo cases that we may have prevented with your help-Our heartfelt thanks.