Parvo in Western Washington? What we Know– Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM
Recently ACCES in Seattle and Renton sent out a notice to veterinarians informing them of a possible significant disease outbreak in their population of animals. In two weeks’ time, the notice stated, seven cases of parvovirus gastroenteritis were seen at their two clinics including staff-owned animals that were current on their vaccinations. Although it appears that this increased incidence was limited and a true community wide outbreak was not seen, owners and veterinarians were concerned, the media attention was tremendous and several dog parks were closed.
It is important that veterinarians remain vigilant for a potential disease outbreak in our community and call attention to their concerns.
We are fortunate in Washington State to have the resources of the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (WADDL), and federal and state agencies such as the Washington State Department of Agriculture which houses the state veterinarian. The WSVMA is a good first point of contact for veterinarians. Depending on the nature of your concerns, the WSVMA will contact the appropriate agencies and provide you timely information. Through our Public Information Director Charlie Powell, the WSVMA can also quickly, efficiently and expertly reach the media providing information to the public while limiting misinformation and panic.
For this issue of Sparks, the WSVMA felt that it was important to provide an update on parvoviral gastroenteritis including vaccination strategies, and asked Jim Evermann, PhD, Professor, Infectious Disease at WADDL/WSU to provide the following summary. An expanded piece will be available in the March/April 2013 issue of Insight Magazine.
Feel free to contact the WSVMA or Dr. Evermann if you have further questions or concerns.