Can Humans Get Parvo From Dogs?


Quick Answer

The canine parvovirus is a different virus than human parvovirus B19 and cannot be passed from a pet dog to its owners, according to Mayo Clinic. The parvovirus and parvovirus B19 are specific to their hosts and can't cross the species barrier.

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Full Answer

Mayo Clinic defines parvovirus B19, also known as fifth disease, as a viral infection that develops a distinctive facial rash in humans. Parvovirus B19 is a highly contagious disease that spreads among elementary school-aged children during spring and winter. The viral outbreak can be hard to contain as the patient is the most contagious a week before the rash appears, but afterward the patient isn't contagious. Most cases are mild, but serious complications can develop in patients with weakened immune systems or anemia.

Canine parvovirus is an acute highly contagious disease that can affect dogs of any age, according to WebMD. Puppies under 20 weeks are at the highest risk to contract the virus. The canine parvovirus affects the intestines in dogs, resulting in dehydration and hemorrhage of the lining. The virus is spread by contact with fecal matter and can survive in the environment for months. Dogs that get intensive treatment with aggressive veterinary supportive care can recover from the virus. Dog who don't get vet care have a very poor prognosis in all but the mildest cases.

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