Tempe shelter in need of donations after puppies test positive for parvo

TEMPE, Ariz. (FOX 10) - They're just a few months old and fighting to get healthy.

This litter of pups brought into the Lost Our Home pet rescue in Tempe was diagnosed with giardia, a virus similar to parvo.

"Parvo is a virus that affects a dog's gastrointestinal tract, so it causes severe diarrhea, vomiting -- which can lead to lack of nutrition and dehydration, which can be fatal for a dog," Sandra Rutan said.

Rutan says the litter of seven pups brought in last month were so sick with parvo that getting them well and into foster care cost $7,000.

"There isn't a cure for parvo, it's just treating them to keep their bodies going while they are passing it," Rutan said.

Pups this sick are essentially quarantined while they are treated -- they're kept away from healthy dogs who are ready for adoption.

"Definitely during the summer months we see a lot more puppies," Rutan said. "It's a lot more common in shelters right now. There seems to be a huge issue [in] the Valley with parvo running rampant."

Parvo doesn't only affect shelter dogs. Rutan warns that all pet owners should be aware of the signs and symptoms and immediately seek treatment if they surface.

"It's very easily transmittable," she said. "All it takes is contact with an infected dog's feces -- that can be through you touching it, through your dog sniffing it, through carrying it on your shoes."