Posted 12th March 2014
You may have seen our previous news post on the ‘Alabama Rot’ type disease (also known as idiopathic cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy or CRGV) from the beginning of February this year. At the time cases of this rare but potentially fatal disease had been mostly seen in the New Forest area with a number of cases also reported from Dorset, Surrey, Cornwall, Worcestershire and County Durham. In the past month a handful of new cases have been confirmed in further areas of the UK including Yorkshire, Monmouthshire, Shropshire and most recently Northamptonshire. As reported in the local media the latter case was seen in a dog who lived and was walked almost exclusively in Salcey Forest, Northamptonshire. To help raise awareness of this emerging disease the Forestry Commision are putting up signs in the area to warn dog owners.
As we still don’t know the trigger for the disease it is difficult to give specific advice about walking your dog, but what is important is to be extra vigilant about looking out for possible signs of the disease – namely skin lesions below the knee or elbow that can look like a focal swelling, a patch of red skin or a defect in the skin like an ulcer. They do not typically look like traumatic wounds from an injury. If affected by CRGV dogs can then go on to show signs such as lethargy, reduced appetite and vomiting secondary to kidney failure within 2 to 7 days, which must be treated aggressively and can be fatal. A presumed diagnosis can be made from this combination of clinical signs, but can only be confirmed by examining skin and kidney samples.
It’s important to get your dog examined by a vet promptly if you see any of these signs, but it’s also important to remember that this is still considered a rare disease and that there are more common causes of both skin and kidney problems. The veterinary specialists Anderson Moores who have been collating data on suspected cases to look for patterns and a possible underlying cause have put together an information sheet that can be downloaded by clicking here. If you have any further queries or concerns please call us on 01280 703451.