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Puppy diagnosed with parvovirus after being adopted from Nassau Humane Society

by: Danielle Avitable, Action News Jax Updated:

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FERNANDINA BEACH, Fla. - A puppy is fighting to live.

Two days after Jaxon was adopted from a local animal shelter, the owner found out he has parvovirus.

Toni Ferraro came to the Nassau Humane Society looking for a new addition for her home and adopted 10-week-old Jaxon, but less than 48 hours later, she said her new puppy started getting sick.

"Didn't want food, didn't want to touch anything, he emptied out his whole stomach," Ferraro said.


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Jaxon was rushed to the animal hospital, where Ferraro said he tested positive for parvovirus, a highly contagious virus that affects a dog’s gastrointestinal tract.

"All we could do was cry because it's a very dangerous thing for dogs to have," Ferraro said.

The director of the humane society said dogs are only checked if they show signs of parvo.

"At least something to this severity that has such a high lethal rate in dogs should be tested prior to adopting out," Ferraro said.

With proper treatment and early detection, Parvo has a survival rate of about 85 percent. Under the humane society’s insurance policy, this virus isn’t covered.

"They said once they leave the facility they're not liable or held responsible for anything that happens to them," Ferraro said.


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While Action News Jax was at Ferraro’s home, the director of the humane society called and said an anonymous donor is paying for all the vet bills.

But Ferraro said she still worries for the other dogs here.

"You never know, this virus is highly contagious, you don't know. I feel bad for all the dogs who are there," Ferraro said.

The shelter’s director of operations said she is working with their insurance company to change the policy and she said all the puppies are being quarantined for 14 days and that it’s rare for one to be adopted out with the virus.