Understanding Coronavirus in Dogs

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses. Some coronaviruses cause illness in people similar to cold, whereas others cause disease in certain types of animals, such as cattle, camels & dogs. Coronavirus in dogs is spread through a canine virus.

For example- canine and feline coronaviruses that only infect animals, not humans. Canine coronavirus infects dogs, whereas feline coronavirus infects cats worldwide. However, some coronaviruses that affect animals can be spread to humans but in sporadic cases. 

Do you have a pet dog? If yes, then go through this article to know the coronavirus infection in dogs. It will help you to get more information and symptoms & vaccine so that everyone can take good care of their pets.

What is canine coronavirus in dogs? 

There are various types of coronavirus, and each of them is affecting different animal species, including humans. If we talk about dogs, canine coronavirus is responsible for causing the disease in dogs. Canine coronavirus is extremely pathogenic for dogs.   

Canine coronavirus is also known as CCoV. This virus is very dangerous for the dogs as it directly affects dogs, causing coronavirus symptoms in them.

The disease occurs in dogs (especially puppies) with high intestinal infections. However, canine coronavirus is a short-lived virus, but it may cause uneasiness in the abdomen for a few days in an infected dog.   

The virus gets its name ‘coronavirus’ from its appearance. It has a ring of projections that looks like a crown made of ornaments fixed on a metal ring. Canine coronavirus does not affect human beings; it only affects dogs causing gastrointestinal problems in them.

coronavirus in dogs   

  • Forms of canine coronavirus 

There are two forms of canine coronavirus in dogs- Enteric Canine Coronavirus (CCoV) and Respiratory Canine Coronavirus (CRCoV). The coronavirus in dogs vaccine that works against Enteric Canine Coronavirus infection does not protect the pet from Respiratory Canine Coronavirus infection. 

  • Enteric Canine Coronavirus (CCoV)

It is a single-stranded enveloped RNA virus. It caused highly contagious intestinal disease in dogs. The virus enters its host cell by binding to the APN receptor causing canine coronavirus in dogs’ symptoms.

Enteric Canine Coronavirus came into existence the first time in 1971 in Germany during an outbreak in sentry dogs.

  • Respiratory Canine Coronavirus (CRCoV)

Respiratory Canine Coronavirus was isolated for the first time in the United Kingdom in 2003 when lung samples of dogs were taken. Since then, the disease widespread in other parts like North America, Japan & various European countries. 

As the name suggests, respirator canine coronavirus is associated with respiratory illness in dogs especially in kennelled dogs.

This virus is distinct from enteric canine coronavirus in terms of genetics & antigenic. Hence, specific tests are needed to diagnose canine respiratory coronavirus.  

As canine respiratory coronavirus causes respiratory problems in dogs, but it is entirely different from the COVID-19. Even though the canine respiratory coronavirus in dogs symptoms are quite similar to COVID-19 having cough, sneezing., both are different.      


  • How canine coronavirus transmits in dogs?

In most cases, canine coronavirus transmits through oral contact with infected feces matter. However, a dog may also get the infection by eating in contaminated bowls or through direct contact with the infected dog.  

Crowding and unsanitary conditions trigger the transmission process of canine coronavirus. It takes almost one to four days from the ingestion period to develop the coronavirus infection’s clinical symptoms in a dog. The illness period after infection lasts for a week or ten days in an infected dog.    

coronavirus in dogs

  • Symptoms of canine coronavirus 

Most of the canine coronavirus infections are sub-clinical and reveals very few clinical symptoms in infected dogs. However, in some severe cases, coronavirus symptoms appear quite rigorous (especially in puppies).

In this case, the typical symptoms of canine coronavirus include diarrhoea, along with lethargic and decreased appetite in an infected dog. You may also observe coronavirus in dogs’ symptoms like a loose stool with pungent odour & orange shade. The stool may also contain blood marks or mucus. 

The condition of the dog may become severe if it has a mixed infection like coronavirus & parvovirus. In this case, the dog needs immediate medication to save its life.

  • Coronavirus in dog’s vaccine

Well, this is quite disappointing to know that there is no particular treatment for coronavirus. As far as antibiotics are concerned, these are ineffective against viruses and may be useful in controlling secondary bacterial infections.

However, when it shows coronavirus symptoms, the only necessary treatment is to withhold food. Holding back the food for one day, i.e., 24 hours after diarrhoea and slowly reintroducing little food at regular intervals, may work as a treatment in an infected dog.

If the dog has become dehydrated due to diarrhoea, it may require intravenous fluids to balance the fluid and electrolyte levels in its body.

Uses of Coronavirus in Dogs Vaccine

Even though there is no specific coronavirus in dog’s vaccine, but still, early medication is vital to cure the infected dog before the condition becomes severe.   

Coronavirus in dog’s vaccine is available. However, it is not recommended for all the dogs; rather, it depends on the lifestyle & risk assessment of a particular dog.

This vaccine is only useful in the case of CCoV types of viruses, not for the prevention of other coronaviruses like COVID-19. 

Although coronavirus is not a fatal disease for dogs, every pet owner should take care of their pet properly. Pet owner should take their pet for a medical check-up regularly to prevent this infection in dogs.

Proper diet, sanitation, and medical check-ups will help the dog to stay healthy and protect itself from any kind of viruses and diseases. 

However, if a pet dog gets coronavirus infection, then do not panic. As soon as the owner observes the coronavirus symptoms in a pet dog, the owner should get in touch with your veterinary doctor as quickly as possible.

He will do the necessary treatment require to cure coronavirus disease. After providing the proper coronavirus in dogs vaccine and treatment on time, pet dog starts to regain its health and enjoy its life with the owner & serve as the best companion.   

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