ROANOKE, Va. – Dozens of people say their dogs are sick and they don’t why. These dogs are experiencing symptoms like dehydration, lethargic behavior, vomiting and bloody stool.
Patricia Buck’s two pups have been sick for a couple of weeks.
“Something is going on and it’s making these dogs very sick,” said Buck.
Buck visited the emergency veterinary thinking the dogs may have parvovirus, but they tested negative.
The doctor diagnosed the dogs with “toxicity,” says Buck. Their illness may be related to something they ate.
Buck was not satisfied with that diagnosis.
“I’ve had over 30 people reach out to me through social media from the greater Roanoke area telling me their dogs have presented with these exact same symptoms,” confessed Buck.
In all cases, Buck says the dogs had no contact with each other and all follow different diets, according to their respective owners.
After a several-day stay at the hospital, Buck’s dog raked up a nearly $2,000 bill.
Local veterinarians say these symptoms are likely one of two things: parvovirus or acute hemorrhagic diarrhea syndrome. They have seen an uptick in both recently.
“Even if you get a negative test, it could come back positive later on,” said Angles of Assisi Veterinary Assistant Kristel Brizendine.
Recently, Angels of Assisi in Roanoke has been testing five to ten dogs a day for the virus. Previously, it was maybe one dog a week.
“A syndrome called ‘acute hemorrhagic diarrhea syndrome.’ It’s previously known as HE or hemorrhagic gastroenteritis,” explained Dr. Caitlyn McBan who works at the Vinton Veterinary Hospital.
In older dogs (even those vaccinated), the syndrome is common. Dr. McBane says the syndrome and virus can display very similar symptoms.
Dr. McBane’s solution: immediately get your dog evaluated by a doctor when they display the aforementioned symptoms and definitely get your dog vaccinated.
Angels of Assisi is hosting a Mobile Pet Health Clinic in New Castle Friday, August 13 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the Volunteer Fire Department on Conrad Street.