As we all know, canine distemper, canine parvovirus and canine coronavirus are the three infectious diseases that cause the highest mortality rate in puppies. However, canine coronavirus disease is the most likely to be misdiagnosed and delay treatment among these three diseases, so this article will systematically explain the canine coronavirus disease!
1. Canine Coronavirus (CCV)
A contagious gastrointestinal disease that can cause gastroenteritis symptoms that can vary from mild to severe.
The most typical symptoms are frequent vomiting, diarrhea, depression, and anorexia, which can still recur 14 to 21 days after the clinical symptoms disappear. It is a highly harmful infectious disease.
After adult dogs are infected, the general symptoms are relatively mild, and they may recover on their own; but puppies are more dangerous after infection. If they are mixed or secondary infected with canine parvovirus, the mortality rate will be as high as 90%.
2. How the Coronavirus Spreads
The disease can occur all year round, and occurs frequently in winter, which may be related to CCV's sensitivity to heat and relative resistance to low temperature. The source of infection is mainly sick dogs and infected dogs. The time for sick dogs to detoxify is 14 days, and the ability to maintain contact infection is longer.
Sick dogs excrete toxins through the respiratory tract, digestive tract with saliva, nasal fluid and feces, pollute feed, drinking water, cages and the surrounding environment, and directly or indirectly transmit to susceptible animals. In addition, this disease is difficult to control. Dogs in the same litter and cohabiting dogs can easily infect each other, and are often co-infected with canine parvovirus, rotavirus, astrovirus and other gastrointestinal diseases.
CCV can survive for 6-9 days in feces, and can remain infectious for several days in water, and the virus infects very quickly, so once it develops, it is difficult to stop the spread. In addition, the coronavirus can be stored in dogs for 6 months, so even dogs that have recovered from the disease still have the possibility of relapse.
3. Symptoms of Coronavirus Infection
The disease spreads rapidly, and can spread to the whole group within a few days, and the incubation period of natural cases is 1 to 3 days.
Sick dogs lethargy, weakness, and anorexia. Initially, vomiting lasted for several days, and then diarrhea began. The feces were porridge-like or watery, yellow-green or orange-red, foul-smelling, mixed with varying amounts of mucus.
Occasionally, a small amount of blood can be seen in the stool, which is difficult to distinguish from canine parvovirus. But CCV infection lasts longer, is intermittent, and can recur.
4. Causes of Coronavirus Infection
(1) Climate change
During the season when the temperature drops sharply, if the dog does not do a good job of keeping warm, it is easy to catch a cold, the immunity is weakened, and the canine coronavirus is induced.
(2) Poor feeding habits
Dogs do not have a sense of fullness. If the excrement scavengers do not control the dog’s intake and blindly feed the little guy, the dog’s intestines and stomach will be damaged, and it will not be able to fully absorb food nutrients and it will be difficult to improve immunity.
In addition, feeding dogs some food that humans eat will bring a certain burden to the little guy's stomach and intestines, and will also lead to a decline in immunity, allowing the coronavirus to take advantage.
(3) Poor feeding conditions
Excessively high stocking density, poor stocking hygiene conditions, sudden changes in stocking management conditions such as weaning, litter separation, and transportation will increase the chances of infection and clinical disease.
5. How to Treat and Prevent Coronavirus Disease
The epidemic characteristics, clinical symptoms, and pathological autopsy of the disease lack characteristic changes, and there are no characteristic indicators in hematology and biochemistry. Therefore, the diagnosis must rely on virus isolation, electron microscope observation and serological examination.
Like most viral diseases, there is no specific drug for canine coronavirus. For dogs with simple CCV infection, the main treatment is symptomatic, including anti-inflammatory, antiemetic, antidiarrheal, rehydration, and nutritional supplementation.
As dog owners, the most important thing for us is to follow the doctor's advice and cooperate with the veterinarian's treatment, especially after the dog's symptoms improve, we should not stop taking the medicine lightly, because some dogs will relapse about half a month after the symptoms disappear.
Since the feces of sick dogs contain a large number of infectious virus particles, it is particularly important to strictly isolate sick dogs and maintain good hygienic conditions. Once the disease occurs, if the feces are not disposed of and properly disinfected, it will spread rapidly among dogs. And 1:30 concentration of bleaching powder aqueous solution and 0.1%~1% formaldehyde are economical and effective disinfectants.