The Reading Conference on Alabama Rot tomorrow (Wednesday 10th May 2017) is being organised by David Walker from Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists (AMVS).
In a 13-minute report on Sunday 7th, May 2017, David Walker spoke to Rachael Garside of BBC Radio Wales ‘Country Focus’ programme (from 6m 45s). He said:
- In the 1980s only greyhounds in Alabama got Alabama Rot
- No greyhounds in the UK have got Alabama Rot
- Alabama Rot has not ‘spread’ – “it has been everywhere the whole time” since 2012. The localisation in the New Forest initially arose due to awareness of the disease by vets in that area since AMVS of Winchester had been talking to local vets. (8m 33s)
- Damage to smaller blood vessels caused by blood clots causes organs, like the kidney, to fail and to cause skin sores, typically below the elbow or knee in dogs.
- The true cause of the disease is not known, despite incredibly hard work looking for infectious agents such as bacteria, viruses and fungi. We’ve also looked for toxins in the dog and the environment. (10m 06s)
- Alabama Rot / CRGV has some similarity to some diseases in people so we can use this human data to consider how to approach the disease in dogs.
- With 98 reported confirmed cases of dogs that have lost their lives across the UK since 2012, Alabama Rot is a rare disease. [8.5M UK dog population] (11m 06s)
- “We strongly suspect there is an environmental trigger to Alabama Rot” (11m 06s)
- Since hundreds of dogs will walk in an area but maybe only one dog will contract Alabama Rot, it may be that dogs that have been infected with Alabama Rot have some intrinsic predisposition to the disease and the environmental trigger.
- Washing dogs legs after a walk is not scientifically based advice – but it can’t do any harm. (12m 02s)
- We need more money to do research to try to improve survival rates and find the cause so that preventative measures can be introduced. (12m 57s)
“We strongly suspect there is an environmental trigger to Alabama Rot. It may be that dogs that have been affected have some intrinsic disposition to Alabama Rot…” (11m 06s)
In addition, Radio 4 Today Programme (from 2 hours 57m 30s) had a 2-minute report by Gabrielle Williams whose dog died in March 2017 and David Walker.