A woman whose dog developed a rare disease wants to raise awareness of the condition among other owners.
Rhonda Rennick took her Boxer George out for a walk in Garston at the end of December. When she noticed a small lump on the side of his face, she took him to the vets.
She said: “Because of his colouring, I thought it could be an ingrowing hair or an abscess on his tooth. He shaved the area and it looked like it was a piercing of the skin or that he had been bitten by another dog. He gave George antibiotics.”
When George stayed off colour, Rhonda took him back to the vet a few days later.
She said: “The wound became worse and the vet kept exploring what it could be. The vet kept exploring what it could be. I made enquiries online and it was suggested it could be Alabama Rot. As well as a visible wound, another indicator of Alabama Rot is kidney disease but the blood tests showed no damage to his kidneys.”
Alabama rot is a disease that damages blood vessels in the skin and kidney. It causes blood to clot in the vessels which damages the lining and tissues of the kidneys. It also causes ulcers on a dog’s skin.
The majority of dogs who have been treated for Alabama rot in the UK have been walked in muddy and/or woodland areas. More cases are reported between November and May which suggests the dogs are more likely to be affected in winter and spring.
Rhonda said George had walked through some thick mud on the walk before he fell ill and urged others to take precautions.
Rhonda said: “George’s prognosis looks good but we have had some horrendous nights with him. If your dog is wet or muddy then please clean him or her. There are no other precautions people can take.”