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DOG DISEASE: A possible case of an illness similar to mad cow disease affecting dogs is being investigated overseas, the food minister Nicholas Soames said. He said 41 brains from dogs in Britain with signs of neurological disease had been submitted for tests since 1986. None had been identified as being affected by spongiform encephalopathy.

BEEF EXPORTS: Gillian Shephard, agriculture minister, said there had been a dramatic fall in British beef exports to Germany and an adverse effect on other British products. Germany recently withdrew a threat to ban British beef imports because of BSE fears.

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