Hero of the Month

Currently living happily with his loving family, Marley spends his time doing the typical silly but sweet golden retriever things; running, playing, and always getting into mischief! With his high energy, Marley is always awake at 5 a.m. with his stuffed Giraffe prancing and playing through out the entire day with Roxy and his family.

Marley was born in the autumn month of November on the 4th in 2017. His owners, Victoria and her family have owned this adorable Golden Retriever since December, 2017.

In February 2018, Marley and his family arrived to King Hopkins Pet Hospital and was diagnosed with Canine Parvovirus (CPV). Thankfully, Marley is a CPV survivor and is doing quite well now!

Marley’s owner Victoria would like to share some information on the Canine Parvovirus  Infection with other’s to help raise awareness about the illness.


The canine parvovirus (CPV) infection is an extremely contagious viral illness that only affects canines. The viral infection shows itself in two forms. The most common form is the intestinal form, which usually is accompanied by vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss and lack of appetite (anorexia) as symptoms. The less common form targets the heart muscles of very young puppies, which often leads to death. Most cases seen are in young puppies, between the age of six weeks and six months old. How do we help prevent this? Easily – by vaccinations.


Majority of symptoms are associated with the canine parvovirus intestinal form, which includes:

  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Severe, bloody diarrhea
  • Inappetence (Anorexia)
  • Fever

The intestinal viral form of CPV affects the puppy’s ability to absorb nutrients, which leaves them dehydrated and weak. The heart may beat too quickly and eyes as well as the gums may become noticeably red. When examined, the dog may be painful or uncomfortable, and have a low body temperature.


There are a variety of risk factors that could increase a canine’s susceptibility to contract the disease. The main route the virus chooses to spread is through direct contact with an infected dog, or through indirect contact by a fecal-oral route. Studies have shown the virus is most commonly found found in other dogs stool (that are infected).

The virus can be brought into a dog’s environment by anything that has come into contact with infected fecal matter. There is evidence that the canine parvovirus can live in ground soil for about a year. It is resistant to most weather changes and cleaning products, meaning it can survive throughout Canada’s winters. One of the few ways to kill the virus is by pouring bleach directly onto the area.


Initially, your dog would need to go through a series of diagnostics to confirm he/she is CPV positive.
We will start off with a physical examination, blood work and then move forward with possible urinalysis, radiographs and ultrasound to confirm the type of parvovirus. Even though your pet’s chemical blood profile shows positive signs of the viral infection, it is not enough to determine the severity of the virus depending on the form the infection takes, whether it is a cardiac or intestinal viral infection.

As the owner, you will need to give a thorough history of your dog’s health, including recent activities and the onset of symptoms you have seen your pet display.

If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact the clinic at 905.665.6369.

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