Several warnings of the fatal canine illness have been circulating on Facebook in recent days, with one saying the illness has been detected at Sandall Beat Woods.
A post said: “My friend’s dogs have got parvovirus.
"One died this morning, one has a 50/50 chance and the other dog is at vets Friday.
"Please keep an eye on your dogs if they've been in and around the woods lately.”
Another said: “Please watch out for signs of parvovirus even if they have been vaccinated.
"My five month old puppy has been in and out for the last week (fully vaccinated) and had not been tested for it...turns out she is positive. It’s the most awful thing to see.”
Parvovirus can be deadly for dogs so it's vital they get help as soon as possible
Dog owners need to be on the look out for various things which could make their beloved pet ill and one deadly disease to be aware of is parvovirus – it is highly contagious but hard to identify.
The virus damages cells inside the small intestines of a dog, which can affect its ability to absorb the necessary nutrients. This means that dogs, including puppies, will become very weak.
Parvo is easily passed on to dogs that aren't up to date with their vaccinations from infected dogs or their poo.
Other animals such as cats are also susceptible to catch parvo and we can even spread the disease from our hands and clothes. However, humans can't catch parvovirus.
Advice on the My Family Vets website says that the symptoms to look out for are:
Diarrhoea, often containing blood
Loss of appetite
Increased heart rate
Parvo can be hard to pick up on as the symptoms are similar to many other infections. If you suspect that your dog has any of these symptoms take them straight to the vets to be checked out, as parvovirus can’t be treated at home.
Your dog will have a better chance of survival the sooner you take them to the vets for help.
If your dog does have parvo it needs to be treated by a vet and stay with them until it responds to the treatment. When your dog is well enough they will be allowed to come home.
My Family Vets has issued advice on how you can nurse your dog back to good health when they return home. It says you should:
Serving them small, bland meals (such as chicken and rice)
Having plenty of rest
Access to fresh drinking water
Access to an area where they can go to the toilet
Keep them away from other dogs
It's worth knowing that even the healthiest dogs can still catch parvo so keeping their vaccinations up to date will help protect them against this nasty disease.
If you have come into contact with the virus make sure you sterilise the area where the infected faeces is as the virus can spread fast on clothing, shoes and hands.