Animal Rescue League Quarantines Dogs Over Increase In Canine Parvo Virus

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — TThe Animal Rescue League in East Liberty has quarantined the dogs at its shelter after an increase in cases of the canine parvovirus.

Officials say parvo is highly contagious and is “spread from dog to dog by direct or indirect contact with their feces.” It can often be fatal.

Having already had to euthanize several dogs, the Animal Rescue League is trying to stop the parvovirus from spreading any further.

As a result, they’ve put in place the quarantine – not accepting dogs or adopting them out. Also, crews are working to sanitize the facility.

Six dogs, including a group of puppies, were put down this week at the shelter after coming down with the often deadly parvo virus.

“They have been humanely euthanized. Due to the fatality of disease only about 20 percent of animals will make it through this disease; so, it’s better off than for them to suffer,” said Erica Scotti, of the Animal Rescue League.

The dogs at the shelter have been kept in their kennels for several days now.

Meanwhile, the medical staff is trying to contain the virus. While most dogs are vaccinated for it, there is still a risk for dogs to get parvo. That’s why the Animal Rescue League is not taking in any new dog surrenders and also are not adopting out.

“We understand that people still need to surrender their animals; unfortunately, we don’t want to risk their animals lives in bringing them into a situation where they may contract the disease,” Scotti added.

Because of the quarantine, the Western Pa. Humane Society on the North Side is taking in dog surrenders, but with more than 80 pets now at their shelter, they’re asking for people to adopt or foster a dog.

“We are certainly reaching out to the community, to Pittsburgers in general, for animal lovers everywhere to come and adopt dogs who need a good home, but also, if you’re not in the market to adopt, if perhaps you could help out by fostering,” Gretchen Fieser, of the Humane Society, said.

Barring any new cases of the virus, the Animal Rescue League is hoping to be able to take in surrenders by Nov. 1.

Animal Rescue League
Western Pa. Humane Society
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  • William Anthony Dlubak

    Are you sure that humans cannot get this disease. Have you done experiments that prove that this is not contageous?

    • George

      How stupid are you? Have you been living in a cave?

      • William Anthony Dlubak

        Go back to your needlepoint, caveboy…..

  • tucker

    Historically humans have not contracted Parvo Virus. Dogs only.

  • William Anthony Dlubak

    I feel tests should be conducted anyway to be 100% sure. Historically many things did not happen. But has science ever proved that it can’t.

    • Bubbish

      If humans could contract the Parvo virus, I would have gotten it for sure, having, in the past, nursed 2 litters of very young pups who contracted the disease. I had some of the pups not be affected at all-the disease just seemed to bypass them-while sadly, others died as a result. A terrible, heartbreaking thing to see. Parvo is an airbone virus which can live (according to my vet) in the ground and yard of an infected home for over a year; humans can pick it up on their feet, for example, while walking their dogs, visiting a local shelter, or at the dog park without knowing and pass it on to their dogs. If caught within the first 2-3 days, many pups can be saved. I know because my now 4 yr. old GSD caught it when she was still too young for her 1st puppy shots. We rushed her to the vet, and they were able to get her through it with flying colors. It cost us $1000 in vet bills, but worth it. I am extremely vigilant (OK, paranoid) with my new puppy and started his shots at 5 wks., with an extra parvo given and have him on a “puppy plan” through the vet.
      And think how many shelters workers and volunteers would contract the disease if it were possible for it to be passed on to humans. Get real.

  • Michelle

    Parvovirus does not cross species. The human variant of of parvovirus causes “Fith’s disease.” This disease has been proven not to transmit to humans.

    There is an erroneous statement in the article where it says the disease is “often” fatal. With appropriate fluid therapy and intensive care, the disease has a survival rate exceeding 95%.

    • Brent

      That survival rate does not apply to puppies. Their immune systems are not developed yet and parvo is far too extreme for them to combat. In the extremely rare case that a puppy would survive after treatment, it would have so many debilitating complications for the rest of its life.

      • ARUSSANO

        Not true! We have a lab/pit mix who had parvo at 6 weeks old and he made it out great and is healthy and playful as any other 8 month old puppy. I don’t think putting them down just bc they are young is the right answer. They deserve a chance to fight off the sickness.

      • JC

        I have seen dozens of puppies survive parvo, it is about a 50/50 chance with proper treatment in puppies. Puppies who do survive are just as healthy as any other puppy, so don’t put that out there to make people feel better about putting the dogs down. As another poster said, this is about money, not about the disease itself.

    • Krystal McCoy

      It is often fatal, when they dont spend money to cure it. which would cost more, treating ten dogs or putting down a dozen? its sad but money is why those dogs were put down.

  • Dominique Grimaldi

    This is so sad!

  • John Little

    They have been humanly euthanized, then tossed into the trash dumpster for a burial at the land fill…… Many dogs do survive if treated, but that would take some caring and time…

  • Kristin

    @william. Parvo has been around since 1967. NEVER in the last 44 years has any human got parvo from a dog. If you research parvo on line you will find all kinds of information. Educate yourself. There are scientist that believe parvo is a man made illness. Dogs and puppies can survive the disease, but it is a hard disease for them to overcome. The treatment is to keep them alive long enough for the virus to run its course. All they do is keep them from dieing from dehydration.

  • JS

    Wish we could do the same with people. 20% chance of living isn’t worth it so we put them down.

    Funny how people put human life in front of all others as a default, we are animals, just a lot worse and more akin to a swarm of locusts then anything actually positive that adapts and balances with the environment.

    We are a plague to the planet.

  • Jocat64

    Actually humans can get thier own version of parvo.

    • William Anthony Dlubak

      As I stated before, more research is needed in reference to Parvo. We should not make a mistake which may cost millions thier lives. We need to know every aspect of this disease before it may be too late!!!

  • William Anthony Dlubak

    Kristen, You need to educate yourself. What would happen if this disease mutates as diseases do. The Flu is a good example. There are many other examples, if you would research the subject, you will find I am right..

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