Mystery dog poison claims another life

Daily Echo: Dog walkers have ben warned to be vigilant Dog walkers have ben warned to be vigilant

ANOTHER dog has died in the New Forest – but experts admit they are no nearer to identifying the mystery toxin that is poisoning pets.

A total of 12 dogs have suffered acute kidney failure after being walked in the Forest, with almost all the cases occurring in the Ogden’s area, near Godshill.

However, the latest casualty died after being exercised on heathland near Burley, raising fears that the problem is far more widespread than first thought.

Dog owners are being urged to remain vigilant and contact their vet if they have any concerns about their pets.

Tissue samples from some of the first animals affected were sent to a Texas laboratory that specialises in investigating cases of renal failure in dogs.

But staff at Winchester-based Anderson Moores – one of the Hampshire veterinary practices investigating the deaths – say their US colleagues have been unable to solve the mystery.

Vet David Walker told the Daily Echo: “Unfortunately the cause could not be identified. Investigations are ongoing but despite ruling lots of things out I’m afraid the cause has not yet been found.”

The Forestry Commission is also baffled.

Posters displayed in the Forest say: “Having undertaken many tests, and following on-site investigations in the Ogdens area, we still don’t know what is responsible.

“It could be something in the environment or it may be something not related to the Forest. We’re continuing to work with other organisations, including the Environment Agency, New Forest District Council and veterinary specialists, to try to find the cause of the illness.”

The Environment Agency confirmed that the source of the toxin was still a mystery.

A spokesman said: “There was nothing in the water samples we took that could have caused this sort of problem.

We also had a good look around the (Ogdens) area but there was no obvious sign of pollution.”

The first cases were reported in December. Almost all the dogs affected became ill after cutting their legs or paws at Latchmore Brook, part of a Second World War bombing range that was used to test new weapons.

The site is also near a former gunpowder factory, sparking speculation that dangerous chemicals may have left a deadly legacy that has only just emerged.

The only animal known to have survived the toxin is Squibby, a four-year-old Jack Russell owned by Henry Richardson and his wife Marie-Anne.

Squibby suffered a swollen paw after going for a walk at Ogdens and spent nine days on a drip.

The Animal Health Trust has put together a questionnaire to run alongside the ongoing investigation. To take part, visit aht.org.uk

Comments (12)

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12:15pm Wed 10 Apr 13

Rainey999 says...

My daughter's dog was also put to sleep last week as a result of this horrendous toxin - he was NEVER walked anywhere near Ogdens / Latchmore - he was only ever walked from Smugglers Road Car Park on a circular route via Picket Post and Verely.
We belive the New Forest Commission have now updated their information and are also putting signs up in the Smugglers Road Car park.
My daughter's dog was also put to sleep last week as a result of this horrendous toxin - he was NEVER walked anywhere near Ogdens / Latchmore - he was only ever walked from Smugglers Road Car Park on a circular route via Picket Post and Verely. We belive the New Forest Commission have now updated their information and are also putting signs up in the Smugglers Road Car park. Rainey999

12:17pm Wed 10 Apr 13

Rainey999 says...

NOTE - It is not a result of cutting their paws - the lesions that appear are as a result of the damage being done in their body - it is a manifestation.
NOTE - It is not a result of cutting their paws - the lesions that appear are as a result of the damage being done in their body - it is a manifestation. Rainey999

1:53pm Wed 10 Apr 13

dave_the_dog says...

i have been trying for a week to get information from the Forestry Commission about what they are doing and what the risk is. so far i have only got a telephone for their "Communications Manager" but have not been able to communicate with her yet!
i have been trying for a week to get information from the Forestry Commission about what they are doing and what the risk is. so far i have only got a telephone for their "Communications Manager" but have not been able to communicate with her yet! dave_the_dog

2:10pm Wed 10 Apr 13

SaffaInTheUk says...

Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest??
Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest?? SaffaInTheUk

2:28pm Wed 10 Apr 13

dave_the_dog says...

Try calling Libby Burke. Communications Manager for the Forestry Comission. her office number is 02380 286832. (This information is freely avaliable online and is not personal information).

there is some basic information online at http://www.forestry.
gov.uk/newforest
Try calling Libby Burke. Communications Manager for the Forestry Comission. her office number is 02380 286832. (This information is freely avaliable online and is not personal information). there is some basic information online at http://www.forestry. gov.uk/newforest dave_the_dog

3:05pm Wed 10 Apr 13

minnie64 says...

SaffaInTheUk wrote:
Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest??
I think if that was me I wouldnt walk my dog anywhere in the forest at present - its a shame but I would rather be safe than sorry. It could be anywhere but from the reports its definately from the forest so I would steer clear if possible.
[quote][p][bold]SaffaInTheUk[/bold] wrote: Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest??[/p][/quote]I think if that was me I wouldnt walk my dog anywhere in the forest at present - its a shame but I would rather be safe than sorry. It could be anywhere but from the reports its definately from the forest so I would steer clear if possible. minnie64

3:20pm Wed 10 Apr 13

lovetheladies says...

Very sad another dog died, surprised more hasn't been done to find out what the cause is and who's to say its not affecting other animals?. Seems like the New Forest is definitely a place to avoid for the moment.
Very sad another dog died, surprised more hasn't been done to find out what the cause is and who's to say its not affecting other animals?. Seems like the New Forest is definitely a place to avoid for the moment. lovetheladies

4:11pm Wed 10 Apr 13

soobear says...

Is it even safe for humans in these areas at the moment? Did they ever make public what happened to that young lad from Fritham who regularly walked those areas, and was found dead recently? Is there a connection? I think I'll avoid the forest for the time being, and I think the identification/cause
/extent of this mystery toxin should be made an urgent priority by the environment agency.
Is it even safe for humans in these areas at the moment? Did they ever make public what happened to that young lad from Fritham who regularly walked those areas, and was found dead recently? Is there a connection? I think I'll avoid the forest for the time being, and I think the identification/cause /extent of this mystery toxin should be made an urgent priority by the environment agency. soobear

5:36pm Wed 10 Apr 13

dogbruce says...

So very upsettting i took my dogs abroad and my liitle Mutley was poisoned he had the most horrific death ,been back here a while now ..Please avoid the areas if you have a dog common sense ,I love the New Forest but wont be taking the dogs i have now there till the reason is found whats causing the problem x
So very upsettting i took my dogs abroad and my liitle Mutley was poisoned he had the most horrific death ,been back here a while now ..Please avoid the areas if you have a dog common sense ,I love the New Forest but wont be taking the dogs i have now there till the reason is found whats causing the problem x dogbruce

12:18am Thu 11 Apr 13

Rainey999 says...

The problem is they don't know what it is and there has not been a single point of reference or one person collating the information. I had to have a lot of discussions before the Commission eventually accepted my daughter's dog, Starbuck, who died last week was subjected to this mystery toxin and had never been anywhere near the Latchmore / Fordingbridge area. They have now acknowledged he was only ever walked from the Smugglers Road car park, a circular route via Picket Post and Verely - he did this every Saturday and Sunday - my daughter even gps tracked the route he took that weekend (as she did every walk) and can show them where he drank, swam etc - but nobody wants to know, A questionnaire is being sent out, but it only has Fordingbridge on it. In newspaper reports it is referred to as Fordingbridge and surrounding area - Ringwood is not a surrounding area of Fordingbridge, so information is not accurately being relayed. The vets are rightly being rigorous in their elimination of any other possible cause, but seem reluctant to say outright that it is this (difficult for them I know).
We gave information for a newspaper article with all of this information - unfortuantely it would appear it has been 'diluted' to the article above.
All we want to do is stop anybody else having to watch their animal suffer as Starbuck, the beautiful, strong, healthy 2 year old dalmation X did......but it isn't being made easy.
Take the information and make your own INFORMED decisions.
The problem is they don't know what it is and there has not been a single point of reference or one person collating the information. I had to have a lot of discussions before the Commission eventually accepted my daughter's dog, Starbuck, who died last week was subjected to this mystery toxin and had never been anywhere near the Latchmore / Fordingbridge area. They have now acknowledged he was only ever walked from the Smugglers Road car park, a circular route via Picket Post and Verely - he did this every Saturday and Sunday - my daughter even gps tracked the route he took that weekend (as she did every walk) and can show them where he drank, swam etc - but nobody wants to know, A questionnaire is being sent out, but it only has Fordingbridge on it. In newspaper reports it is referred to as Fordingbridge and surrounding area - Ringwood is not a surrounding area of Fordingbridge, so information is not accurately being relayed. The vets are rightly being rigorous in their elimination of any other possible cause, but seem reluctant to say outright that it is this (difficult for them I know). We gave information for a newspaper article with all of this information - unfortuantely it would appear it has been 'diluted' to the article above. All we want to do is stop anybody else having to watch their animal suffer as Starbuck, the beautiful, strong, healthy 2 year old dalmation X did......but it isn't being made easy. Take the information and make your own INFORMED decisions. Rainey999

6:18pm Thu 11 Apr 13

cliffwalker says...

SaffaInTheUk wrote:
Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest??
You have no need to worry. As far as is known only canines are affected.
[quote][p][bold]SaffaInTheUk[/bold] wrote: Very concerned about this. I walk my girls at Longdown or Deerleap, is it safe there? How do we know it's just in the New Forest??[/p][/quote]You have no need to worry. As far as is known only canines are affected. cliffwalker

3:44am Sun 14 Apr 13

Turtlebay says...

Could it be some nutter putting poison down because they hate all dogs?
Could it be some nutter putting poison down because they hate all dogs? Turtlebay

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