The social-media based service which warns pet owners and vets of cases of parvovirus in their locality reaches its second birthday in November 2014. The service which has almost 7,000 likes on Facebook and more than 2,000 followers on Twitter, has warned of hundreds of cases of the disease since it was launched in November 2012.
Parvo-Alert is the brainchild of Virbac vet and Marketing Manager for Companion Animals, Simon Boulton MRCVS. Vets and owners who learn of a case are asked to tweet or post on Facebook the first half of the postcode where it has occurred. Parvo-Alert then retweets it and posts it on the Facebook page to update followers on the geographical location of cases. As an additional precaution, Virbac immediately sends practices in the affected postcode a ‘Parvo-Alert pack’ to provide material to help them warn pet owners.
The service has attracted support from leading dog charities, including Battersea Dogs and Cats Home and PupAid.
With cases having been reported right across the country over the last two years, Parvo-Alert has helped to demonstrate that the disease is still a threat in virtually every part of the UK and is not confined to urban areas and ‘hot spots’ such as the North West of England. Just recently, cases have been reported as far apart as Kent, the South West, North Wales, the North East and Yorkshire
Sarah Walker BVM&S CertAVP MRCVS, who manages Parvo-Alert, said: “Anyone who has seen a dog suffering from parvovirus will never forget it. Sadly, many owners remain unaware of this often fatal disease, which is difficult and distressing to treat, but which can be prevented by regular vaccination.
“We’re proud of the contribution Parvo-Alert has made to raising awareness and understanding of the threat posed by parvovirus – and the high number of owners using the service shows a great desire for more information and education.”
Alongside the Canigen vaccine range, Virbac offers Virbagen Omega, the veterinary interferon based treatment for CPV, and Speed Parvo FC, a rapid in-house diagnostics test for the disease.
Founded by a veterinary surgeon, Virbac is dedicated to supporting the veterinary profession through the development of innovative products and services, which help animals to lead longer, healthier lives. One of the largest independent veterinary pharmaceutical companies in the world, its wide product portfolio includes many market-leading and award-winning products for large and small animals.
Virbac (www.virbac.co.uk) aims to work in close partnership with its customers, providing the advice and support they need to run successful, profitable businesses. Many of the services it offers are available through its innovative practice support portal www.my-virbac.co.uk.