Warning to Dog Owners - Alabama Rot

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by FORMER_FYRDMAN, May 14, 2017.

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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    This has featured in the Kennel Club thread but it's buried around page 730ish, which is probably why I've just heard about this from dog walking associates rather than via Arrse and why I'd rather risk the Curse of Jarrod than have someone lose their doggy.

    For those of you who are not aware, here are a couple of links, for those of you who are, it may be an informative update.

    Alabama rot map plots the worrying spread of the dog disease across the UK

    Alabama rot dog disease - what you need to know

    Given that my Springer is half duck and spends much of his time in water, his post-walk regime now includes a warm bucket of water and Fairy Liquid rather than a simple hose down.
    Last edited: May 14, 2017
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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    P.S. Appreciate the 'Excellent Topic' but could we use 'Like' instead - it'll keep it in the Top Topic section for a week giving it a 'bump' effect and making it likely that more people will come across it.
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  3. Have you any evidence that this works or is a good idea? I used to work with infectious diseases and it's a difficult decision to know how best to clean a potential infectious site and what with. Some infectious agents are unharmed by detergents but the detergent can remove the body's natural defences by stripping out oils (which are naturally bactericidal) and making the skin more porous. There's also a problem that no one yet knows what the cause of Alabama rot is so choosing the correct treatment for paws is difficult. I would be tempted to use the mildest possible detergent, such as baby shampoo. Given the baby product can be bought for £1.50 for 500mL it's not an expensive option.
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  4. Supposedly it's the fungus on leaves and goes extra active when the leaves fall and start to rot. So avoiding forests in general, and especially in autumn was the advice our vet gave.
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  5. The next door neighbour had a mutt that was always in and out of heavily forested areas when he lived down south. It ended up with this and by all accounts, it wasn't pretty. Something that definitely needs to be advertised.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    I don't but I'm working on the basis that hitting the problem with something more that cold water is more likely to be effective. I'd also consider your proposal but my concern would be damage done by agent over-use or ingestion because, if your dog is anything like mine, he's firmly in the cleanliness is next to godliness camp.

    I think the bottom line is to be aware of this thing and a bit of detergent/soap might make a difference, particularly before your dog tries to self-clean, and may save a beloved pet while the more qualified folk are searching for the answer. I take your wider point and a degree of commonsense needs to be applied.
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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Further to my last, I found this re post-walk washing:

    How can Alabama Rot be avoided?

    “As we don’t know the exact cause, avoidance is difficult. However, thorough washing of your dog’s coat after walking in woodland (especially if muddy… like everywhere this year!) is a sensible precaution that should reduce the risk.” (1)

    “In addition, it is likely that certain places pose a higher risk than others; if there has been a case in your area, it is probably wise to avoid areas where the affected dog(s) were walked in the days before they were diagnosed.” (1)

    “It’s also really important to check your dogs over regularly – not just for sores or ulcers, but also for cuts, ticks, mats of hair or other injuries.” (1)

    (1) David Harris BVSc MRCVS – Jan 7th, 2016 Do I need to worry about “Alabama Rot”? | Vet Help Direct

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  8. Yes, I'm not questioning the principle of washing. I'm not sure that Fairy liquid is a good idea though, too harsh for use on animals.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Your point's well made, I agree that you have to be sensible and keep an eye out when it's on a daily basis but I've used it on a variety of dogs, from large retrievers to small terriers, without any issues. FL is fairly benign but it will give any spores a rougher time than a mild shampoo and I'm not talking about using it in industrial quantities.
  10. Had a pre-deployment hygiene briefing and the instructor (RAF Regt Cpl but that's not important right now) had obviously just learned (badly) a new big word as he kept referring to anti-bacteriacidal (sic) gel.
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  11. The orthodoxy on this in microbiology is that it is dilution that is important, not trying to kill spores. TBH Fairy isn't going to anything to a spore, they can generally survive boiling water for example. Lots of rinsing is important and a small amount of detergent to help remove the spores trapped in natural skin grease. They best form of defence seems to be avoidance of infection hot spots which is why we are not taking our dog to the New Forest or to forest country parks despite the fact that we are surrounded by them.
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  12. Gout Man

    Gout Man LE Book Reviewer

    This was on Country File a few weeks back, according to the vets it's difficult to treat and no know reason why or how it infects the dog.
    A perfectly healthy dog can die within 48 hours. The good news is it's very rare so don't panic.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Just to make clear that I'm not in any way pretending towards any degree of orthodoxy, best practice or insight. I'm responding on the basis of first principles in the face of an unknown - to anyone encountering this thread, if there's someone operating on a more scientific basis, please listen to them not me.
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  14. So there's a couple of people talking about washing their dog after a walk, Good idea regardless. has anyone heard of F-10 Veterinary disinfectant? it may be ideal to use.

    Last edited: May 17, 2017
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