Roger Salmon column

Telltale reddening around the back leg of a dog with Alabama Rot.
Telltale reddening around the back leg of a dog with Alabama Rot.

Following recent news coverage, we have had a few enquiries about a mysterious disease that has killed 13 dogs across Britain in recent months.

The disease was first detected in The New Forest after dogs began to fall ill and started to develop lesions on their legs, paws and face following their walk in nearby woodland.

Other cases have also been recorded in Surrey, Cornwall, Worcestershire and County Durham.

Although these cases are not close to home it is important to warn owners that it is not unique to these areas and local dogs could be at risk particularly if travelling to these areas.

If you notice that your dog has developed any skin wounds, do not just leave it in the hope it will get better.

Bring your pet to the veterinary surgery and one of our experienced vets can give them a thorough check and give them the necessary treatment to protect against this fatal disease.

Although the cause and name of the disease is unknown, expert veterinarians have discovered similarities to a disease first reported in the 1980s in America, called Alabama Rot.

It caused severe kidney failure and typically affected greyhounds.

However the deaths in Britain over the past year have affected a variety of breeds.

The British Veterinary Association have informed the Forestry Commission who are placing signs in nearby woodlands to warn owners.

Some dogs have survived the disease but only if they are treated for their symptoms at an early stage.

There is concern that the disease has developed in the UK and has caused a new threat to dogs across the country.