par·​vo·​vi·​rus | \ ˈpär-vō-ˌvī-rəs How to pronounce parvovirus (audio) \

Definition of parvovirus

1 : any of a family (Parvoviridae) of single-stranded DNA viruses that include the causative agents of fifth disease in humans, panleukopenia in cats, and parvovirus in dogs
2 : a highly contagious febrile virus disease of dogs that is spread especially by contact with infected feces, that is caused by a strain (Canine parvovirus) of the parvovirus causing panleukopenia in cats, and that is marked by loss of appetite, lethargy, often bloody diarrhea and vomiting, and sometimes death

Examples of parvovirus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In 2015, an outbreak of parvovirus was thought to be responsible for a gastrointestinal wasting illness that affected hundreds of millions of starfish off the west coast of America, many of which succumbed. Carolyn Barber, Fortune, "Everything we know—and don’t know—about human-to-animal COVID transmission," 4 Sep. 2020 Stibich says LightStrike has been tested against two surrogates on that list: MERS and canine parvovirus. Dinsa Sachan, Smithsonian Magazine, "How Innovators Are Adapting Existing Technologies to Fight COVID-19," 14 Apr. 2020 Diseases such as distemper and parvovirus are preventable with vaccines. Washington Post, "Hints From Heloise: A healthy pet in the new year," 11 Jan. 2020 Georgia Athens: The dog area of an animal shelter is under quarantine after three puppies tested positive for the highly contagious canine parvovirus. USA TODAY, "Rare elephant calf, two-headed rattlesnake, another quake off Oregon: News from around our 50 states," 6 Sep. 2019 The Humane Society of Huron Valley is warning Washtenaw County residents that cases of parvovirus and distemper, which can affect a variety of canines, are significantly up in the area this year. Emma Keith, Detroit Free Press, "Here's how to protect your pets from parvo and distemper," 8 June 2019 The disease, which is believed to be a type of parvovirus, first began killing sea stars in Southern California in the summer of 2013, but the problem quickly spread northward. Peter Fimrite,, "Starfish on California coast, nearly wiped out by mystery illness, make stunning recovery," 22 June 2018 But other viruses, including influenza and variola (pox) have been found in archaeological human remains as much as 400 years old, and Mühlemann says that others like herpes viruses, parvoviruses, and adenoviruses might be good candidates. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Genghis Khan’s Mongol horde probably had rampant Hepatitis B," 11 May 2018 Dogs Trust and other charities have warned that in addition to the very real danger of being rabid, these puppies could spread other diseases fatal to dogs, like parvovirus. Mirren Gidda, Newsweek, "The Latest Illegal Business in the U.K. Is Dog Smuggling," 16 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'parvovirus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of parvovirus

1965, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for parvovirus

New Latin, from Latin parvus small (akin to Greek pauros small, paid-, pais child) + New Latin -o- + virus — more at few

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The first known use of parvovirus was in 1965

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Last Updated

14 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Parvovirus.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Oct. 2020.

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par·​vo·​vi·​rus | \ ˈpär-vō-ˌvī-rəs How to pronounce parvovirus (audio) \

Medical Definition of parvovirus

1a capitalized : a genus of single-stranded DNA viruses of the family Parvoviridae that includes the causative agents of panleukopenia in cats and fifth disease in humans
b : any virus of the family Parvoviridae and especially of the genus Parvovirus
2 : a highly contagious febrile disease of canines and especially dogs that is caused by a virus of the genus Parvovirus (species Canine parvovirus), is spread especially by contact with infected feces, and is marked by loss of appetite, lethargy, often bloody diarrhea and vomiting, and sometimes death

called also canine parvovirus, parvo

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