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⚠️ Alabama Rot is a dangerous disease that can be life threatening for dogs. ⚠️
We don’t want you to be alarmed but it is important to be aware of it and to know what signs to look out for. That’s why we’ve written this blog, to explain exactly what Alabama Rot is, how to spot symptoms of the disease and what to do if you suspect that your cherished pet may have the disease. If you know exactly what to look out for, you can spot any potential symptoms early and book an appointment with one of our experienced vets who can offer advice and help to keep your precious pet protected. 🐶
The scientific name for Alabama Rot is cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy. This is a rare but potentially fatal disease that can affect dogs. This horrible disease damages the blood vessels in a dog’s skin and their kidneys. Small blood clots can form which may result in blockages. The reason this disease is so dangerous, is because as well as causing ulcers and sores on the skin, it can sadly develop into kidney failure if not treated early.
🔸 Ulcers on the skin- usually on the legs
🔸 Marks and sores- these may look like cuts or open wounds
🔸 Areas of redness
🔸 After a few days additional symptoms such as fatigue, vomiting & a reduced appetite
The first sign of Alabama Rot is usually an ulcer or a wound that looks like a small, round sore. They are typically found on the legs or paws but you may notice them on other parts of the body too. It’s also possible to find sores on the tongue.
Skin sores can present as lesions, swelling, a patch of red skin, or wounds that may be open and ulcer-like. Various things can cause these types of sores but it is a good idea to consult your vet if you notice any strange or unexplained wounds just in case. It’s important to address any concerns as early as possible.
You may notice the onset of further symptoms between 1-9 days. These include reduced appetite, fatigue, increased thirst, changes in urination and vomiting which are all signs of kidney failure. These signs tend to show 3 days after the marks on the skin appear. If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your vet as soon as possible to seek expert advice and veterinary treatment. As Alabama Rot is a serious disease, taking immediate action is imperative.
While some researchers believe that Alabama Rot can be picked up in muddy, woodland areas, it is hard to say for sure exactly what does cause this disease. This means that sadly, there are not really any specific steps you can take to prevent your dog from contracting the disease. You can however take extra precautions and be aware of the signs and symptoms of Alabama Rot and this knowledge is invaluable. Spotting signs of Alabama Rot early on will mean that you can address your concerns with your vet and get your precious pet seen quickly.
As the cause of Alabama Rot is uncertain, it is difficult to know exactly how to prevent it but being aware of the symptoms and looking out for them is extremely important.
It’s always good practice to check your dog over, so we would recommend checking them regularly for any cuts, sores or wounds. If you notice anything out of the ordinary or any unexplained cuts or sores on your dog’s feet or legs please bring them to see your vet straight away. It’s a good idea to get things like this checked and to seek professional advice from your vet for peace of mind.
You know your pet’s behaviour better than anyone, so keep an eye on them and if you notice anything different, such as a reduced appetite, vomiting or lethargy, speak to your vet straight away. Our experiences team, will be able to discuss any concerns you have.
Researchers have suggested that there could be a link between walking your dog in woodland areas. While there isn’t necessarily proof of this, you might want to take extra caution and either avoid particularly muddy areas or ensure you wash your dog’s feet thoroughly after walking in any muddy areas. Make sure you wipe any mud off your dog’s feet after walks- you may even want to bath them after walks to be extra cautious.
If your dog has any skin lesions on their feet, we would strongly suggest avoiding taking them to the park and contacting your vet for advice.
While Alabama Rot is a very dangerous disease, it is very rare. We don’t want you to be overly worried as only a small percentage of dogs get this disease in the UK. We just want to make sure that you are aware of it and that you know how to properly look out for any signs of the disease.
It’s important to remember that most skin wounds will not be caused by Alabama Rot (so don’t panic!) but it is always best to get them checked out for reassurance.
Enjoy your walks with your cherished pets but keep an eye on them and have regular health checks with your vet to ensure they stay happy and healthy.
It is not known exactly what causes Alabama Rot but some researchers believe that wet and muddy conditions could be a contributing factor. Cases of Alabama Rot have been previously linked to woodland areas, but have also been noted throughout the UK, so please be mindful of this.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a specific treatment for Alabama Rot. However, treating the skin ulcers may help to prevent the risk of secondary infection. Seeking prompt advice from an experienced vet will significantly help. Wounds may need to be dressed, antibiotics given or tests taken to monitor kidney function. By contacting your vet, you can get the expert advice you need and your dog can receive any treatment they require quickly.
If you have any worries or concerns about your pet, please don’t hesitate to contact us on 0208 674 3525. 📞 Our experienced team will be able to give you more information and help to answer any questions you may have.