Last Modified on Mar 03, 2014What Is Distemper?
Canine distemper is a highly contageous virus that can affect many outdoor critters like raccoons, skunks, foxes; but unfortunately can also be contracted by your lovable household dogs and even ferrets. Feline distemper (panleukopenia) is a different virus. Initial symptoms of dog distemper include fever, loss of appetite, watery discharge from the eyes and nose. As the disease progresses the discharge thickens and turns yellow with other distemper symptoms including dry cough, puffy blisters, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive salivation, incontinence, sensitivity to light, seizures, sensitivity to touch, paralysis and loss of sight. Dogs that survive distemper show a deterioration of brain function, and some of the neurological symptoms may remain.
Due to the high virulence of the disease and the susceptibility of puppies, dogs are typically given a distemper shot while young to protect them from the disease. While treatments are still being explored, it is believed that the most reliable distemper treatment option is prevention through vaccination. However, it may be the dog you adopted had an incomplete vaccination history, or perhaps you've taken in a stray and your pet is at risk or showing signs of distemper. Vitamin A, tea tree oil, and lavender oil are said to hold efficacy against distemper, but we are still actively seeking more home and natural remedies for our puppies with distemper.
[YEA] My dog had an incomplete vaccination history (found this out after the fact). He contracted distemper. Outlook - certain death. He was, prior to the illness, fed a raw diet (we think this helped). Anyway, he stopped eating, drinking, etc. He would drink my expressed breast milk. It kept him alive. Also, we massaged him down twice a day with 10 drops tea tree and 10 drops lavender mixed in a 1/2 cup of a carrier oil. We also boiled water and put 5 drops of tt and lav. in it and had him inhale the steam once to twice a day. We thought he was a goner, but we kept at it. It's been almost a year since that and he is alive and strong!