Latest News at Abbotswood Veterinary Centre
Beware of Lungworm
It is officially spring time! Unfortunately spring also means peak activity time for slugs and snails.
While we may be concerned about the threat these gastropods pose to our garden flowers, they also pose a very serious risk to our pet dogs. Unfortunately, as our dogs are enjoying the great outdoors, they can pick up parasites such as lungworm (Angiostrongylus vasorum).
Lungworm is a parasitic worm which affects dogs and foxes.
Once your pet becomes infected, adult lungworms live in their heart and the major blood vessels supplying the lungs, causing a variety of serious health problems. Lungworm is known as the ‘silent killer’ as symptoms can go unnoticed for months, even years, before death.
Symptoms include changes in behaviour, weight loss, breathing difficulties, coughing, vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach pain. All ages and breeds are susceptible to lungworm infection, however, dogs which are known to eat slugs and snails are considered higher risk. Do not forget about your dog's toys that if left out in the garden may have slugs trail over them overnight!
Unfortunately, lungworm is gradually becoming more common. Recent studies have shown that lungworm is now found throughout most of the UK, with hotspots including the South of England, Greater London and South Wales. However, lungworm infections can be prevented with monthly treatments as recommended by us.
If your dog displays symptoms of lungworm infection, please seek ask us for advice.
Alabama rot/cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy
Cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy (CRGV), also known as Alabama Rot, is a disease which causes damage to blood vessels in the skin and kidneys in dogs. It is fatal in 9 out of 10 dogs. Since November 2012, more than 120 dogs across the UK have been affected by the disease. In the South West, cases have been reported in Taunton, Chippenham and South Wales.
Recently we have seen our first case of the disease which unfortunately resulted in the death of a very dear patient. The exceptional speed at which this disease progresses has shocked all of us.
This is a devastating disease. The disease presents in three ways:
Skin lesions (non healing, primarily on the lower limbs, stomach, muzzle and tongue)
Depression due to acute onset kidney and liver damage
Variable combinations of both of the above
Due to the high mortality of the disease, there is currently a high level of public concern and our clients often ask us for more information. Unfortunately, we still do not know the cause of the disease. Any breed, age or sex of dog can be affected and progression of the disease can be very fast, with many dogs falling seriously ill within a few days of developing skin lesions.
As the cause of the disease is still unknown, it is difficult to know how to prevent the disease. However, the advice is currently to wash your dog with dog shampoo after he or she has had a wet or muddy walk. If your dog exhibits any of the symptoms listed above please take them to your veterinary practice for a check-up.
If you would like more information regarding Alabama Rot, the current leading specialists are Anderson Moores, a referral practice in Hampshire. Their website can be found at www.andersonmoores.com.
Image courtesy of Anderson Moore Specialists Published: 07-06-2015
We have been nominated for the Pet Plan Veterinary Awards 2018 for practice of the year
Many thanks to all our wonderful clients who voted for us!
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