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Deadly Dog Virus Hits New Jersey Animal Shelters

Beagle (credit: AP Photo/Jeff Christensen)

Beagle (credit: AP Photo/Jeff Christensen)

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CLIFTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Officials said an outbreak of a deadly dog virus at animal shelters in Passaic County was under control.

Shelters in Clifton and Passaic reported several cases of canine parvovirus in the past two weeks. Officials at the Clifton Dog Shelter said some dogs were so sick that had to be euthanized.

Clifton Animal Control Officer, Robert Boyle, told 1010 WINS that the facility was immediately placed under quarantine.

Boyle said it was not feasible to “test every animal that comes in.” He said that shelter officials “watch for any signs of sickness” because when a virus hits, “it hits fast.”

Parvovirus infects dogs’ intestines and can cause lethargy, loss of appetite, dehydration, vomiting and bloody diarrhea, among other symptoms.

Experts said it is preventable and there’s no cause for alarm for dog owners whose pets have had all their vaccinations.

Boyle noted the sick dogs were separated from rest and some healthy dogs were shipped to other shelters so they wouldn’t get exposed.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)