I am writing this question with the opinions of four different vets, and seven very sick puppies with a mystery illness.

I have seven puppies and a mama dog that came from a shelter in West Virginia. The puppies are estimated to be about five or six weeks old. When we got the puppies, they all had diarrhea, including mom. They were transported in a car with six kittens who developed upper respiratory and another puppy who has not gotten sick.

When we initially took the puppies to the first vet, he said they must have upper respiratory and gave us Amoxi to treat them with. When I went to check at the puppies at the foster’s house on Saturday, one of them was very lethargic and refusing to eat. I rushed him to the emergency vet where he was diagnosed with pneumonia and I was told to begin treatment using Doxycycline.

I took him home with me so he could have constant attention and have fed him formula, puppy food, and pedialyte every two or three hours. At first he perked up, but then began to go downhill again. At the same time, mom dog was rushed to a different emergency vet because she could not breathe- and diagnosed with kennel cough.

When my puppy began to go downhill again, I put him on nutri-cal puppy as well, and brought him to my usual vet. They suspected kennel cough in the whole litter and pneumonia in four of the puppies. Another puppy also began to go downhill (fever, vomiting, lethargic, wouldn’t eat, etc) so I brought her home with the first puppy. She perked up the next day so I brought her back to her litter- the first puppy was still very lethargic.

We weighed puppies and took temperatures regularly- more began coming down with fevers, while the puppy in my home was running a normal temperature, but was still very lethargic.

Now we come to today. I brought my puppy to the vet this morning- where they gave him fluid for a third time, took a fecal sample (bloody stool), and ran all sorts of tests, one of which was a parvo test. We have not gotten the results back for that yet, but we did get the results for the other tests- his liver and kidneys are beginning to fail and his red blood cell count is extremely low. He also has pain in his abdomen.

The really confusing part began a few minutes ago. This puppy has been lethargic with diarrhea for days. I have force fed him pedialyte, nutri-cal, and puppy formula (yes, they should be off that by now). Now, he is barking, jumping around, wagging his tail, and licking me (he has not licked me since he got to my house!).

All of the puppies are going back and forth. Some will be lethargic, then bounce back up. Then others are lethargic and later bounce back up. Some have crusty discharge from their noses, some are coughing. Some have a fever.

Does this sound like Parvo? Could this be something else? We are taking all Parvo precautions now- but might they not be necessary?
I should also add that my vet has given me the fluid and needle to administer the fluid with- because the puppies need to be hydrated if they do indeed have Parvo. Should we still be doing this even if we don’t know what they have?
Thank you for reminding me about the time frame, LeeAnn- it has been about a week.
I guess there will always be one person who doesn’t actually read the question and just touts a vet visit.

Filed under: Kennel Cough Treatment

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