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Study suggests Alabama Rot may be seasonal
The study found that 95 per cent of Alabama Rot cases occurred between November and May.
Findings will help researchers explore possible triggers for the disease

New research into Alabama Rot has revealed a distinct seasonal pattern for when cases are most likely to occur.

The study, led by the RVC and Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists, revealed that 95 per cent of cases were confirmed between November and May.

It also found that most cases occurred in the west and south of England. Far fewer cases have been reported from the east of the country, in particular, East Anglia.

The research was funded by the New Forest Dog Owners Group and the charity Alabama Rot Research Fund.

“A distinct seasonal pattern is suggested, with the vast majority of cases occurring between November and March, and limited cases over the summer months – just 6.5 per cent of cases have been confirmed from June to October,” said co-author David Walked from Anderson Moores.

“In the scientific world a lot of research is not earth-shattering, but it all builds together and little by little we make progress. This information is good in terms of how we manage the next stage of research, however, we need to be careful and not jump to any conclusions at this point.”

Alabama Rot has been reported in a wide range of breeds, but due to the small number of cases, it is not possible to say with certainty which breeds have an inherent risk of contracting the disease.

Researchers say any patterns may simply be the result of varying breed populations in different parts of the UK. Vets4Pets director of clinical services Dr Huw Stacey, who has been actively supporting research on the condition, said:

“Since we held the first Alabama Rot conference in May 2017, vets and relevant professionals have been working hard to understand more about the condition. We know how the disease presents and how it affects dogs internally, and this research adds some interesting information that may help to increase vets’ index of suspicion for the disease.
 
“The information on climate and ground type will help us further explore possible triggers for the disease, but at the moment we can’t say if any breeds are more likely to develop the disease.”

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ZSL London Zoo shares animal X-rays

News Story 1
 A selection of X-ray images showing the inner workings of frogs, turtles, snakes and geckos have been shared by veterinary surgeons at ZSL London Zoo.

Taken as part of a routine health check, the images have been shared as part of ‘Vets in Action’ week - a hand’s on role-playing experience for children that explores the life of a zoo vet.

ZSL London Zoo veterinary nurse Heather Mackintosh said: “It’s great to be able to share the work that goes on behind the scenes at the Zoo to keep our residents in tip-top condition – and our visitors are always amazed to find out more about their favourite animals.” 

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Vets in developing nations given free access to BSAVA’s online library

BSAVA has teamed up with the WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to offer vets in developing nations free access to its online library.

The Association’s ‘Foundation Collection’ is comprised of more than 70 hours of articles, lectures and book chapters covering topics such as basic handling skills, working on a budget and emergency triage. Some of the countries set to benefit include Albania, Georgia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania.

Nicolette Hayward, of BSAVA International Affairs Committee said: “Our mission is to promote excellence in small animal practice through education and science, so we are delighted to work with WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to share these high-quality resources to the veterinary profession in low and middle-income countries.”