2 dead dogs, 3 infected after parvo outbreak at Houston County Humane Society

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WARNER ROBINS, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT)- The Houston County Humane Society scrambled to disinfect every surface after a parvo outbreak takes the lives of two dogs and infects three.

The outbreak prompted the Houston County Humane Society to close until further notice as they attempt to minimize the virus.

According to Purina.com, the parvovirus is deadly but preventable. The website encourages pet owners to vaccinate their puppies.

The Director of the Houston County Humane Society Dee Allison says that potential for an outbreak increases as we experience high temperatures.

“Cold temperatures kill the parvovirus, but we don’t see much of that in Georgia,” Allison said. “We [the Houston County Humane Society] knew we had a problem when the second dog caught the parvovirus.”

Allison says employees bleached everything inside the building as well as outside. They also communicated with the Department of Agriculture. 

”We started treatment on the dogs who had the virus and gave booster shots to those who don’t,” she said.

How to prevent and kill the parvovirus

Allison says the two things that kill the parvovirus are Clorox and a special parvo spray.

A sign on the front door of the Humane Society reads: “if you walk inside, you MUST wipe feet on a Clorox towel outside the door.” Allison says the virus stays alive in the ground, and she stresses that it is not airborne.

“A good way to prevent your puppy from catching parvo is by starting it on a series of shots at 6, 9, 12 and 15 weeks old,” Allison said.

Dogs require an annual booster shot after completion of the series.

“The parvovirus is the biggest killer in animals and we have already lost 2 dogs,” Allison said. “Three puppies are being treated for Parvo at the Humane Society and responded well to the treatment.”

Allison also says the other dogs in the building are not fully vaccinated. “It’s a waiting game to see if they catch the virus or not,” she said.