By Beth Sharp Tuesday 15 October 2013 Updated: 15/10 14:46
DOG OWNERS in Worcestershire have been warned to make sure their pets' vaccinations are up to date after a number of cases of the life-threating disease, Parvo, were recorded in the last two months.
Four out of 77 strays recovered by Worcestershire Regulatory Services have been diagnosed with the illness which causes symptoms such as bloody diarrhoea, sickness, lethargy and a loss of appetite.
Although it cannot be contracted by humans, the illness can lead to a very painful death for canines.
Vets and wardens are urging residents to bring unvaccinated dogs in as soon as possible as the illness is very contagious especially among puppies.
The increase in the number of cases corresponds with a drop in the number of owners failing to keep up with their animal's vaccinations.
Pip Singleton, Worcestershire Regulatory Services’ dog warden, said: "Not vaccinating your pets is not a good money saving option as they will become very ill which will mean high vets’ bills."
Jane Gallagher, a veterinary nurse from YourVets in Wythall, added: "Vaccinations are key as we are seeing more of Parvo. Puppies especially go down hill quickly - in a matter of hours."
She added Rottweiler puppies were particularly prone to Parvo.
Residents thinking of getting a dog are advised to avoid puppy farms and places where they cannot inspect the parents.
Owners are also encouraged to speak with their local vets before they buy a dog so they can get advice on what to look out for.
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