Vets who treated a dog that died of a deadly disease after walking along the Downs Link have spoken of their sorrow at what happened.
The dog was confirmed earlier this week to have died of the lethal Alabama Rot disease.
Jonathan Underwood, a director at Hawthorn Veterinary Surgeries in Henfield and Partridge Green, said today: “We are saddened to report that a patient of ours has died from a confirmed case of CRGV - cutaneous and renal glomerular vasculopathy - also known as ‘Alabama Rot’.
“This has been our first confirmed case of CRGV of a patient registered at Hawthorn Veterinary Surgeries.
“The patient received extensive treatment from Hawthorn and our colleagues at New Priory Vets in Brighton but despite the best efforts from all involved unfortunately we could not save her.”
He said that the pet dog had been walking on the Downs Link from West Grinstead towards Henfield in the week before she became ill. But, he added: “We do not know the cause of CRGV and so can not speculate as to whether this is relevant or not.”
He said that the first signs of Alabama Rot were often “unexplained lesions or redness particularly, but not exclusively, on the legs or paws.
“In some unfortunate cases these lesions can then lead to renal (kidney) failure.
“We recommend seeking veterinary advice if you discover any unexplained lesions on your dog but we wish to reassure our clients and the general public that there may be many causes of lesions such as a sting, wound or cut that are not related to CRGV.”
Last year, cases of Alabama Rot were reported in Petworth, Brighton and Billingshurst among other areas around the country.