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The Incubation Period of Parvo Virus in Dogs

| Updated September 26, 2017

The word "Parvo" strikes fear in most dog owners. Parvo is a formidable virus that can be fatal to canine companions. Vomiting, diarrhea and lethargy are the main symptoms of a parvo infection.


Dalmatian Dog sniffing in the meadow
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Parvo is transmitted through contact with feces from an infected animal. Most dogs will touch and even eat one another’s fecal matter. This nasty canine habit causes rapid transmission of viruses.


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The parvo virus reaches the intestinal tract around day three, and the full array of symptoms may appear within five to seven days after infection.

Fecal Evidence

Tired American Staffordshire terrier lying down
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Parvo virus becomes detectable in feces within three to four days after infection. It continues to be shed in the feces of recovered dogs for up to 21 days after the onset of infection.


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Parvo virus can cling to surfaces undetected for months. Parvo is resistant to some household cleaners. Use diluted bleach to clean potentially contaminated hard surfaces.


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Parvo is a dangerous disease with a mortality rate of up to 48 percent. Take sick dogs to a veterinarian as soon as possible.