Experts at Norway’s Veterinarian Institute remain stumped over what’s causing an illness that has now killed 26 dogs in the past week. They’ve been able to rule out several illnesses but can’t yet determine what’s been sickening dogs, sometimes fatally, all over the country.
As more dogs have fallen ill, the institute has received test results from autopsies and samples taken from dogs with bloody diarrhea and vomiting. The institute reported that they don’t think the dogs have been poisoned by any algae nor do they suspect anthrax, tularemi or illnesses that can be spread by ticks.
Three more autopsies were performed Monday and Tuesday, one on a dog from the mountainous area of Sogn og Fjordane. All had the same bloody intestinal infection and tested positive for the two bacteria Providencia alcalifaciens and Clostridium perfringens. Questions remain over how they were infected and whether the bacteria actually killed the dogs.
“We’ll keep working on this,” Hannah Jørgensen, researcher and veterinarian at the institute, told state broadcaster NRK. She said the institute was still urging dog owners to prevent their dogs from associating with other dogs. She said it also remained important for dog owners to get their pets to a vet quickly if they develop diarrhea, adding that “it’s important to stress that most all the dogs who get sick recover” if quickly treated.
“We hope to find out where this illness is coming from, whether there are any commonalities among the dogs like something they’ve eaten, drank or been infected with in another manner. Then we can possibly track the source of infection.”