Liability Disclaimer: I am not a veterinarian, and do not wish for you to use this information to diagnose a problem.                    Instead, it is offered as "food for thought" for responsible and educated dog owners

Going off feeds is the first sign of trouble. Head right away to the Vet for a fecal check. EXAMINE THAT POOP! If you have solid hard poops and puppy is eating and playing then there should not be an issue. If you see loose stools while puppy is playing then still time for a Vet trip and a check of the feces. It is vital to check your puppies stool at the first sign of illness. Worms Parasites and food poisoning bacteria can show up in a stool exam and pave the way for prompt and effective treatment of your puppy.

Be careful of a Vet who calls every case of vomiting or diarrhea PARVO as many cases of Parvo are mimicking illnesses and will cost just a fraction to cure. as Parvo. Many Vets who say they saved Parvo puppies are really saving puppies with other Illnesses. Parvo fecal tests are NOT confirmation since a Parvo vaccine given within a weeks or so will give you a Positive Parvo result!! So do the fecal test to RULE OUT others illnesses BEFORE you accept a Parvo diagnosis. Of course do not prevent your Vet from giving care to your puppy as it can take 24 hours to get the fecal results back from the lab.

Campylobacter is an intestinal bacteria which can mimic parvo. It is in the food poisoning group of bacteria's such as E coli and Salmonella. Campylobactor bacteria are  often found in about 80% of chicken. Adult animals can be infected with it without showing any symptoms .Adults
dogs can pass the bacteria into the environment and new puppies in your home can pick up this bacteria and become deathly ill if not treated immediately.  Keep your new puppy away from any adult dog you have at home until the puppy is at least 4 months old.

An affected puppy, kitten or immune compromised adult is  found prostrated and you may or may not see  burgundy color diarrhea which has a smell that most veterinarians will say is the same as Parvo. This is because bloody stool all smells similar. The younger the puppy the higher the fatality rate from dehydration and hypothermia.

While parvo is species specific, campylobacter is not.  It can be passed between species, including hamsters, rabbits, ferrets, birds, livestock, etc. and it can be passed to humans.  In facts animals can get it from humans and then have it passed back to them.

Campy can be treated with antibiotics , sugar water,  warmth and fluids.  I have heard stories of dogs being treated for a parvo like illness who was given  Chephalaxin was up and around in 4 hours. This doesn't happen with Parvo. Many Vets are not familiar with Campylocator and so will treat for Parvo which can cause thousands of dollars. Treating Campylobactor is a fraction of the cost of parvo.

A fecal test sent to the lab looking for this bacteria will confirm the puppy has Campylobactor and not Parvo.

Parvo Signs
Parvo puppies sit around for a day or two with depression before severe vomiting and diarrhea begin, or sudden vomiting and prostration may start off the disease. Death occurs in most cases despite blood transfusions, IV fluids and antibiotics. Prevention is the way to go! Neopar vaccine is the best.

Campy Signs
Puppies with intestinal bacteria infections suddenly drop with low blood sugar and weakness. They are found collapsed and unable to raise up. Rarely is there vomiting in the beginning although it is possible. Despite appearing desperately ill recovery is common  with the correct antibiotics, glucose for low blood sugar, warmth  for hypothermia and Iv fluid support.


Things you can do to protect your animals as well as your human family include:

Washing your hands  when you have handled any droppings, animal or human, and when you have handled animals unfamiliar to you.
Pick up animal droppings in the yard as soon as possible
Don't allow your dog to eat other animal's droppings
Don't allow your animal to drink from pools of water that may have other animal's droppings in it
Launder your animal's bedding bi weekly
Discourage an infected animal from licking the faces, especially children or anyone who has a compromised immune system

Since no conclusive  Parvo diagnostic test exists it goes without saying that Veterinarian's who think they are  "saving"  Parvo puppies are actually saving a large percent of puppies who have canine Corona virus or  Campy.

The fecal test called a Glass slide smear is sent to a lab. The cost is about $90 but may prove the puppy does NOT have Parvo and save  you thousands  of dollars. Request the Vet ask the lab to check for Campylobacter, Ecoli & Salmonellla.

Be aware  that while you wait for the fecal glass slide test results your puppy may be in need of IV fluids and other support offered by your Veterinarian and there is always that chance that your puppy does indeed have Parvo. Please do not refuse treatment and put your puppies' life at risk while you wait for the results of the  fecal test that was sent to the lab.

Make it mandatory to RULE OUT intestinal bacteria before assuming Parvo because the treatment for Parvo runs into several thousands of dollars. The treatment for Campylobactor will cost a fraction of the Parvo treatment..