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Canine Distemper Virus

Canine Distemper virus is a viral disease where puppies and unvaccinated dogs are most at risk. It is spread through droplets in the air which contain body fluids such as faeces, vomit, urine or respiratory excretions. The droplets are inhaled or ingested by an individual, where then the virus invades the lymphatic system and spreads through the body.

The incubation period for this virus is approximately one week and once infected most dogs will develop the disease to some extent.

Symptoms can vary with some dogs showing minimal signs including pyrexia, nasal discharge or upper respiratory signs e.g. sneezing. More severe cases may also include vomiting, depression, diarrhoea, wobbliness, seizures, paralysis or thickening of the foot pads or nose.

Unfortunately there is no specific cure or treatment for Distemper and infected cases will be provide supportive therapy to control the effects of the disease.

Vaccination is available in order to prevent this disease, this being one of the diseases routinely vaccinated against within the UK.

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