You decided to rescue the perfect dog for your family. He is cute and gentle, and you know he will fit in great. You already love him, and he is a member of the pack.
Now you notice he seems sick and not feeling well. He is coughing and sneezing, and you are not sure if he has allergies or something else. You have heard the mention of distemper before, but you don’t know much about it.
What do you do now? Could it be distemper?
What is Distemper?
Distemper is a viral disease that is spread from dog to dog by coughing and sneezing. Canine distemper affects the respiratory system and can spread to other organs and is fatal in many cases. It is caused by Canine Distemper Virus.
The symptoms present as coughing and sneezing but quickly turn into vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures in some cases.
Know the Signs
Remember, sometimes a sneeze is not related to allergies. If your dog starts sneezing and coughing pay attention. These can be early warning signs of canine distemper.
Symptoms progress quickly, so you need to be in tune with your dog and be able to react if he takes a sudden turn.
How Distemper Is Treated
Unfortunately, treatment options are limited for canine distemper. Antibiotics do not work for viruses will be used for bacterial infections that present with distemper.
Distemper often requires a veterinary hospital stay for your dog. He will be given IV fluids and nursing care, as well as medicines for other symptoms, such as vomiting.
What to Do If Your Dog Has Distemper
If you suspect your dog may have canine distemper, you should get him to the vet immediately. Distemper is fatal in approximately half the cases seen. This is nothing to play around with or to try to wait and see how things turn out.
Without fast treatment, your canine will not do well and will become worse.
How to Prevent Distemper
The great news is that distemper is completely preventable. You can even purchase distemper insurance in case your dog somehow comes down with the virus.
Vaccines are available now that will keep your sweet pup from coming down with this awful viral disease. It is normal to get the distemper vaccine when you get other shots for your dog, such as a rabies vaccine.
After initial shots, your vet will give you a schedule of boosters that your dog will likely get every one to three years to keep him from getting sick with distemper.
Keep Calm and Get to the Vet
You do not need to panic. Many times what you see is just a bad allergy attack or even kennel cough. Dogs get sick with a little virus just like humans do and often recover faster.
It is always better to be on the safe side and get your canine checked for distemper just in case. You don’t want to wait too long to begin treatment. The better your dog feels, the better you will feel! Follow us for more tips like these.