SEASONAL CANINE ILLNESS (SCI)
Updated January 2017:
The Animal Health Trust (AHT) is not currently conducting an investigation into seasonal canine illness so has no new information about cases or possible causes of the disease.
The AHT advise that dogs are walked on leads in woodland during Autumn/Winter so that owners can keep a close eye on them and suggest that spray treatments for mites may be helpful if you are concerned about SCI.
The symptoms to watch out for include vomiting, diarrhoea and lethargy and if not treated speedily can be fatal. Any dog owner who is at all worried about their pet after a walk should visit a veterinary surgeon immediately.
Updated July 2015:
Seasonal Canine Illness is a mystery illness affecting dogs during the autumn, which can prove to be fatal.
Cases are generally seen between August and November. SCI can affect dogs of any size, shape or sex and it causes dogs to become very ill, very quickly after being walked in woodland.
The most common clinical signs are sickness, diarrhoea and lethargy typically experienced within 72 hours of walking in woodland. If you suspect your dog is showing signs of SCI then please contact your vet immediately.
We are unable to advise on specific cases, or offer specific or individual advice on where you should or shouldn’t walk your dog during SCI season.
The cause of SCI is unknown and there are no known preventive measures. You may wish to ask your vet about topical spray treatments for mites to apply to your dog immediately before a walk.
In recent years, there has been a dramatic decrease in the number of fatal cases. We hope this is due to increased awareness of the condition and that dog owners now know to contact a vet for advice if they spot any of the clinical signs.
Information provided to us certainly shows that if dogs get veterinary treatment quickly for SCI signs, they tend to recover within seven-10 days. In 2010, 20% of cases reported to the AHT resulted in death. In 2012, less than two per cent of cases reported to us resulted in death.
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Please help us spread awareness of SCI by downloading and sharing our awareness poster here