One of the biggest worries and frustrations for any business that takes care of pets (dogs especially) is dealing with viruses for which there are limited or no vaccines available. Parasites and fungal infections can factor into this occasionally too.
We have created this page to help address the viruses, parasites, etc. themselves. But also to explain what we do to try to prevent exposure and our protocols for when a viruses makes its way out to us. Please feel free to read over the information and the links we have provided for more information. The following information is not meant to be a diagnosis or directive for treatment, rather educational outreach. Contact your Veterinarian if you have questions or concerns about your pet's health.
Upper Respiratory Viruses
(Bordetella - kennel cough/canine cough...Coronavirus)
While there are several types of fungal infections that can affect pets. Ringworm is the one that most people thing of since it can be spread between species - including us.
Our disinfectant is a fungicide, so our kennel spaces are taken care of. Unless there is an obvious, hair-free lesion, we will be unable to tell if a pet has ringworm. Dogs and cats with ringworm are not allowed to board until cleared by a Veterinarian.
Incubation is generally 7-10 days and treatment through your Veterinarian is generally required. Ringworm is not necessarily hardy out in the environment but can be picked up in the soil, not just from contact with other animals.
See the links above for more information.
Just like kids in a daycare or people sitting together on an airplane, the opportunity for dogs to share "germs" is better when they are congregating - be it here, at a groomer, Vet's office or dog park. Boarding is a seasonal business, with our busiest times being summer vacation season and major holidays, so it is during these times that we're most likely to see an outbreak.
Due to the incubation period and that dogs can carry without showing symptoms, there is no way of knowing if a dog that appears normal and healthy is carrying a virus - and the owner may not know either. For example, we can have an infected dog (unbeknownst to us) come in for just a day or two, shed the virus, and leave. Then more dogs overlap each other continue to share the virus until enough time as passed for someone to eventually start showing symptoms.
A lot of folks assume that we know something is going around when in fact we do not. If we haven't heard from clients or Veterinarians letting us know, it can take up to 2 weeks before we'll see a dog(s) showing symptoms while staying here.
Keeping your pet on a regular preventative, getting a fecal sample check at the annual exam will help reduce your pet's likelihood of getting or carrying one of these parasites.
We will treat a pet who comes in with fleas.
If we see worms (round or tape worms) in a dog's stool we will inform the owner.
See the links above to research more information about canine parasites.
What do WE do?
Below is some info listed on handout we keep on the front desk.
What can YOU do?
Information on Viruses, Parasites and Fungal Infections
Much like the respiratory viruses, dogs congregating in one are increases the opportunity for them to share their "germs". Because dogs will shed viruses without symptoms, we have no way of knowing who may be bringing something along with them to the kennel until others start showing signs.
We exercise the dogs 3-4 times a day in shared yards. This is great for them, they get to run off-leash, sniff and have a good time. But, it does allow them contact with other dogs feces. And this is another opportunity to share the unwanted things.
As with other viruses, we quarantine the dogs/buildings affected. We increase our poop scooping, disinfect yard surfaces where we can and try to limit direct contact between dogs as much as possible.
Thankfully this is not a virus we have encountered often, but again, it is more likely to show up during the peak boarding times. Please let us know if your pet is exhibiting signs or has been diagnosed with Coronavirus.
Upper Respiratory Viruses
External Parasites: fleas, ticks, ear mites
Internal Parasites: round worms, tapeworms, hookworms, whipworms
Other Internal (non-worm): giardia, coccidia
Canine Coronavirus (Intestinal)
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