Warning issued to pet owners after beach bug kills dog and makes eight others ill

The Environment Agency has issued a warning after a number of dogs became ill, with one dying, from a mystery beach bug

Natural Resources Wales, the Environment Agency in Wales, is urging dog owners to take precautions after a mystery beach bug killed one dog and left another eight unwell after walking on the same beach.

It is believed popular beach Aberffraw on Welsh island of Anglesey is the suspected epicentre of the bug. All of the known incidents so far are linked to contact with still water near beaches. However, concern has grown among pet owners, worried the cause of the outbreak is relatively unknown.

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A spokesperson for Natural Resources Wales said: "We are aware of a number of dogs falling ill on beaches on Anglesey and we have been liaising with local groups and individuals.

“We do not believe this is linked to any algal blooms in the area and we will continue to monitor the situation. However, we would advise owners to keep pets away from any stagnant water and any obvious algal growth or accumulation as a precaution."

It’s been reported that a dog owner from the surrounding area, who has been liaising with Natural Resources Wales has been contacted by others whose pets have been unwell.

One of the dog owners affected said symptoms can be severe and shared a warning on social media. She said: "Nothing obvious has been reported, such as palm oil or eating dead fish.

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“However the one factor that’s common to the cases is dogs visiting still water as well as the sea. I am aware of eight dogs that have fallen ill. In some cases it has been serious, affecting the liver and kidneys and requiring veterinary treatment."

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She said after her dog was affected she bought a plastic sandpit for her pooch and filled it with fresh water. She added: "It means the house is always muddy but he adores his paddling pool and I know he is safe."

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