ANOTHER dog has died after being exposed to a mystery toxin that is thought to have affected about 22 dogs – 11 in the forest.
Charlotte Gladman lost her dog Harley six days after coming into contact with the substance in Holmsley.
Harley, a three-and-a-half-year-old collie-Labrador-Dalmatian cross, developed a lesion on his leg after being walked near the old airfield.
Mrs Gladman, a teacher, said: “That is the only place we have taken him in the last few weeks. Six days ago he came back with a lesion on his leg and we were worried about it so we rubbed steroid cream on it and gave him antibiotics.
“But it wouldn't go away and four days later he started being sick. We took him to the vets and then he was sent to a specialist but he was just too ill and his kidneys failed.”
Mrs Gladman and her consultant engineer husband Richard took Harley to specialist vets Anderson Moores in Winchester, where many of the affected dogs have been treated. Three are known to have survived with their intervention, but sadly it was too late for Harley.
Mrs Gladman said: “He was a rescue dog that we had since he was 12 weeks old.
“The vets were so good and did all they could. I'm really grateful and they have done biopsies on Harley so hopefully the results will help them find the cause of these deaths and stop them in the future.”
Anderson Moores head of medicine David Walker said: “Between December 2012 and March 2013 there were seven confirmed cases from the New Forest and seven from elsewhere in the country.
“Since December 2013 there are two confirmed additional cases in the New Forest. I am awaiting pathology results on two further dogs from the New Forest and another four dogs from elsewhere in the country.
“In total three of these dogs have survived.
“Most skin lesions won’t be caused by this disease, and the majority of dogs with kidney failure won’t have this problem.
“However, we want owners to be vigilant and if their dog has a skin lesion of unknown cause they should discuss this with their local vet.”