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Ask Dr. Laundry

Ask Dr. Laundry

Disinfecting Parvovirus from Surfaces

By Dr. Laundry March 18, 2011

Q: I had a dog die from the parvovirus and I was told to bleach everywhere my puppy had been. How many times should I bleach before the virus is gone?

A: I am so sorry to hear that your puppy died – how very sad. To kill canine parvovirus on hard non-porous surfaces, prepare a disinfecting solution of ¾ cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach and one gallon of water. Pre-wash the areas and then mop or wipe with the disinfecting solution. Let stand for ten minutes, then rinse thoroughly and air dry. One treatment should kill the virus as long as you use the proper dilution and allow ten minutes of contact time. For this situation, I would also use a newly purchased bottle of bleach to be sure the bleach active is at label strength. Definitely do not use a bottle of bleach that has been sitting around for too long, since over time the bleach active naturally breaks down into salt and water. This decomposition process is what makes Clorox® Regular-Bleach environmentally friendly.