Can cats pass parvo to dogs?

NO! Cats and dogs have their own separate, species-specific parvovirus strains. The cat strain, called feline panleukopenia virus (FPV), is a significant disease threat amongst the feline community, but it cannot be transferred to canines.

If untreated, canine parvovirus is a highly contagious illness with a 91% fatality rate in canines. Dog feces can transmit the parvovirus through direct contact or indirect contact, such as sniffing. But just how contagious is parvo from dogs to cats?.

You might have the same inquiry I did, as I recently spoke with a veterinarian about this subject. A pet owner had questioned him about whether cats could contract parvo from dogs.

He has a different viewpoint than many blogs you may have already read, but it is one that is supported by a 2012 study, and I’m going to share some of that information with you today.

The possibility exists that cats could contract parvo from dogs. Researchers discovered that canine parvovirus is contagious from dogs to cats and vice versa in a 2012 study of asymptomatic feline carriers. Whilst it’s rare and unlikely, it can happen.

This goes against the prevailing belief that has prevailed for years, which held that cats cannot contract parvo from a dog. This was based on the idea that cats could only contract feline infectious enteritis (FIE) or feline panleukopenia virus (FPV), two different canine parvovirus variants.

Even though inter-species transmission is uncommon, which is true in the vast majority of situations, a 2012 study by Clegg et al. demonstrated that canine parvovirus can occasionally infect cats.

What precisely is the study, and what conclusions does it draw regarding the transmission of canine parvo to cats? You can read a summary of the study on the ScienceDirect website. com website, or quickly glance over my notes and evaluation of it below.

Myth: Parvo has a very distinct smell. This allows cases to be confirmed.

Numerous individuals believe that parvoviruses produce a distinct diagnostic odor in symptomatic animals. The cells in the bone marrow and the cells lining the intestines that divide quickly are the targets of parvoviruses. By day four to seven after exposure, the virus spreads to the bloodstream and the intestinal tract after first replicating in lymph tissue. Low white cell counts, bloody enteritis, and vomiting can all result in secondary bacterial infections. These symptoms are telltale for both diseases and result in the distinctive odor.

Animals, however, can experience the same symptoms from a variety of other conditions, such as some bacteria and parasites. One of the most important tools shelters have for preventing widespread outbreaks of parvo is early detection and response to infected animals in the population. Prompt diagnostic testing is the only way to confirm a parvo diagnosis. Even though not every case will have obvious symptoms, clinical indicators like vomiting and diarrhea, especially in puppies and kittens, should prompt diagnostic testing.

Myth: If an animal has been recently vaccinated and tests positive on the parvo antigen test, the result is likely a false positive.

This myth that is persistent in shelters needs to be dispelled perhaps more than any other. Neglecting a positive outcome in a clinical animal due to a recent vaccination could have grave repercussions. The parvo antigen test is not perfect, like all tests, but it is very useful in the shelter. False positive results are possible, but seem quite rare based on studies and empirical evidence, did you know it can be used for either FPV or CPV? According to one study on panleukopenia tests, the rate of false-positive results following vaccination varied depending on the test brand used. In this study, the IDEXX brand test produced false-positive results the least frequently, and they were always weak positives on the test rather than strong positives.

Also keep in mind that if animals are shedding tiny amounts of antigen in the early or late stages of illness, they may test falsely negative for this test. Additional test methodologies can confirm parvovirus infection. Many shelters offer in-house complete blood counts or blood smears that assess white cell counts, or they can send them out for a small fee. Use the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) to find nucleic acids. When a recent vaccination has taken place, these tests can be challenging to interpret despite being highly sensitive, specific, and quick. Antibody titer levels can be assessed. Finally, whenever an animal dies, necropsy and histopathology are valuable.

Bottom line: Test results must always be interpreted in conjunction with an animal’s history and clinical signs. In order to protect the rest of the shelter population, positive or negative antigen test results in an animal should prompt further action and may call for isolation or other testing.

Before making any dietary, medication, or exercise changes for your pet, always consult your veterinarian. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.

The most well-known disease that can spread between species, including dogs and cats, is rabies. The majority of the virus is found in the saliva of an infected animal, making bites the most common method of transmission, though Vet Info points out that transmission can also happen through scratches. Because there is no cure for rabies, it is imperative that you keep up with your pet’s vaccinations.

Due to the fact that some skin conditions, like mange and scabies, are brought on by mites that can jump from one host to another, dogs and cats can contract them. Mange is characterized by patchy hair loss and red, irritated skin with oozing lesions. Scabies, which results in itchy, red skin and some hair loss, is actually a type of mange. These skin conditions can resolve on their own without treatment, but it is best to visit your veterinarian for care if you have multiple pets in the house to lower the risk of the condition spreading and becoming more severe.

The majority of dog and cat illnesses are species-specific, meaning that cats and dogs rarely contract the same illness. There are only a few exceptions, one of which is the canine parvovirus’s relatively recent mutation (in the last 10 years) that allows it to spread to cats. In his book on viral ecology, Christon J. Hurst explains that canine parvovirus and feline panleukopenia virus are comparable illnesses that both cause diarrhea, fever, and vomiting among other symptoms. Both are parvoviruses, and while they used to only affect the species to which they were specific, the canine parvovirus variant’s ease of transmission from dog to cat raises concerns about the possibility of other new viruses that can infect a wide range of hosts.

Since 1990, Elle Di Jensen has worked as an editor and writer. She started working in the fitness industry in 1987, and she has published and edited a work out manual. She has multiple pets, including ones with special needs, in her extended family. Jensen attended Idaho and Boise State Universities. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications.


Can dogs and cats pass parvo to each other?

Cats cannot contract feline parvo from dogs because the specific virus that infects dogs does not also infect cats. Canine parvovirus-2 (CPV-2) is a similar virus that can infect dogs. Newer variants of CPV-2 (CPV-2a, CPV-2b, and CPV-2c) can infect your cat but the original CPV-2 cannot.

Can other animals give dogs parvo?

Any animal, object, or person that comes into contact with the feces of an infected dog can contract parvo. Parvo can be fatal if your pet hasn’t received this crucial dog vaccination in Fresno, California.

Can cats spread diseases to dogs?

Sometimes infected fleas can transmit parasites like roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms, or whipworms from cats to dogs. If the cat’s litter box is nearby, dogs are notorious for stealing snacks from it.

What animals can spread parvo to dogs?

Parvoviruses are present all over the world and have the ability to infect and sicken carnivores. Coyotes, wolves, foxes, raccoons, minks, and bobcats are among the wildlife species that can contract parvoviruses. Parvoviruses can also infect domestic cats and dogs.