Signs warn dog owners of deadly 'Alabama rot' disease in New Forest
Signs are to be put up in the New Forest warning dog owners about the outbreak of a mystery disease which has killed 17 dogs in the United Kingdom.
Vets believe the disease may be 'Alabama Rot', which was discovered in the United States in the 1980s. Alabama Rot eventually leads to kidney failure and is more commonly seen with greyhounds, but there are fears that it is now beginning to affect other breeds.
Notices from the Forestry Commission are to advise owners to take their pets to see the vet if their dog shows signs of developing lesions on its legs, paws or face, and are also urged to check even if the lesions appear a week after a walk.
David Walker, of Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists in Hursley, near Winchester, said: "What I would say is that if you see a skin wound on your dog then don't just leave it.
"Ordinarily you might say I'll leave that for 24-48 hours - I would say don't do that, get down to your local vet."
Mr Walker revealed his practice first saw cases in December 2012 and since then vets had developed a "much better handle on what the disease is".
Owners are being warned about a disease that may affect dogs in the New Forest, which is better known for its ponies (Rex Features) According to the BBC, the majority of the 17 dogs which had died in the past year were based around the New Forest. Other cases were reported in Surrey, Cornwall, Worcestershire and County Durham.
While the source of the outbreak is yet to be identified, the Environment Agency has ruled out chemical contamination from water supplies.
It had been suggested that a toxin similar to E. coli bacteria could be the catalyst for the outbreak, but Mr Walker said his team had "looked very hard" for the bacteria, but failed to find any trace.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: Exeter - An excellent opportunity for a Solici...
£17000 - £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Helpdesk Support Technician - 12 ...
£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Maintenance...
£30000 - £38000 per annum + pesion + holidays: The Jenrick Group: World Wide S...