Fighting the Alabama Rot

Fighting the Alabama Rot

Cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy (CRGV), more commonly known as the Alabama rot, is an often fatal condition that was first identified in the United States in the 1980s - hence the name. However, it didn't remain confined there: in November 2012, the first cases of Alabama rot in the UK were confirmed. Since then, cases have cropped up in dogs across Britain.

The disease, whose causes remain unknown – but which is usually associated with walks on wet, muddy terrains - can lead to fatal kidney failure within ten days from the first symptoms, which is why it’s vital to recognise them as soon as possible: it is much easier to treat before kidney failure has occurred, while most dogs with kidney failure succumb despite treatment.

Referring to the affected dogs in Scotland in May last year, the The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies has stated, "The initial lesions include inflammation, reddening, sores, swelling, bruising and ulcers,” the statement reads. “These usually affect the feet and lower limbs, but can be seen around the face, in the mouth and elsewhere on the body. The lesions can be painful, and lameness or licking at the affected area may be the first sign.

“Cuts, wounds, stings or bites are much more common than CGRV but can look very similar. Owners should take their dogs to their vet if they are concerned, particularly if the skin lesions are unexplained.”

Vets4Pets has created an online tool for dog owners to keep an eye on the spread of the disease, and offer advice as to how to prevent this disease – or to spot it on time, giving the affected dogs a fighting chance. Find the link here.
Alessandra Pacelli

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