Channel 5 vet NAMES mysterious dog disease sweeping UK – warning as cases soar | United Kingdom | News - petsitterbank

Channel 5 vet NAMES mysterious dog disease sweeping UK – warning as cases soar | United Kingdom | News

The highly infectious disease known as parvovirus is spreading among Yorkshire dogs, according to a Huddersfield vet. Martin Paterson, director of Donaldson’s Vets, who has practiced in Huddersfield, Calderdale and South Yorkshire, said a “significant number” of dogs have tested positive for the virus after showing gastroenteritis-like symptoms – or vomiting and diarrhoea.

It comes as dog owners in Yorkshire continue to report their pets are falling ill as part of a ‘mystery disease’ that is sweeping inland from the coast.

Mr Paterson said that although there is often an ‘increase’ in the number of dogs showing such symptoms at this time of year, his practices are at a ‘higher level than before’.

Speaking to Yorkshire Live, he said: “We tested the majority of these cases for parvovirus and found a number of dogs who tested positive,

“Many of them are very sick and need intensive, hospital care to be able to straighten them out.”

He pointed out that dogs that tested positive for the virus did not show the “very, very acute signs” that made the virus so deadly in the late 1980s through the 1990s.

Mr Paterson, who moved to Huddersfield from Edinburgh 25 years ago, said not all dogs showing signs of gastroenteritis test positive for the virus, but warned that a “significant number” the are.

He said: “It’s unclear if this is just about testing more dogs for parvovirus, and that reflects what’s happening more broadly, or if there’s a unique problem in this area.”

The director of Donaldson’s Vets – made famous by his participation in Channel 5’s smash hit The Yorkshire Vet – said doctors were struggling to uncover a pattern of infection.

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Mr Patterson said: “We see dogs that have been to the seaside – where a lot of these reports come from – but we also see a lot of dogs with gastroenteritis that have stayed locally,

“We found no pattern to connect these dogs. They come in all ages, breeds, and geographies across the branches of our practice.

“They (the infections) seem to happen quite randomly.”

According to Paterson, symptoms of gastroenteritis in dogs include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite and reluctance to exercise.
He urged owners who notice such symptoms to seek medical attention immediately.

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“Come see us,” he said. “We’ll often ask you to leave your dog in the car and we’ll examine him outside in the parking lot – just so we don’t risk bringing anything to the hospital or clinic.

“There is a relatively quick test we can do on feces to check for parvovirus.

“Some of these dogs can stay home and get treatment, but some need to come in and be put on a drip and managed quite intensively in our isolation ward in Somerset Road, Almondbury.

“We have facilities specifically designed to manage these infectious patients.”

Mr Paterson said the best thing owners can do to protect their dogs against parvovirus is to make sure they have had their booster shots.

He added: “Vaccination is very effective in preventing serious disease and we wonder if some of the less severe cases we have seen are due to these extra vaccinations suppressing the way animals get sick,

“It’s not coronavirus – there’s no evidence it’s related to Covid in any way.

“Booster vaccinations for dogs should be done every 12 months – so if your dog hasn’t received their booster during this time they are potentially susceptible to parvovirus.”

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