Frank's beloved pooch, Mr. Benson, passed away on Tuesday afternoon. Mr. Benson, who was just 4, took ill on Saturday with an unexplained stomach virus. He was taken to the pet hospital where he sufferedMore >>
Mr. Benson, who was just 4, took ill on Saturday with an unexplained stomach virus.More >>
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -
Three dogs dead in a matter of days who all suffered from what doctors say seems to
be the same rare sickness.
What's more, they all stayed at the same dog day care
One pet owner says his dog Max had similar symptoms
of the other three dogs that died. All four recently stayed at the dog
care center called The Pet Spot in Norwood. Max is doing well and improving, but
that wasn't the case a few days ago.
Russell Gibson was on vacation, away from his
dogs for a few days, but when he came back to pick them up on Friday, something
was wrong with Max.
"Buster came to me right away. Max just
didn't seem like his normal self," Gibson explained.
His suspicion took a frightening
turn when he got home.
"Later on, I took a shower and got out of
the shower, and I came into the other room, and there was just a pool of blood.
It just looked like a crime scene," said Gibson.
Gibson quickly brought his dog to MedVet on Red Bank Road where doctors told him Max was suffering from symptoms similar to something
called hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, better known as HGE. One key red flag is
"While I was there, another person came
in and her lab had the same symptoms. I heard her telling the
receptionist," said Gibson.
FOX19 spoke with that dog owner, and
unfortunately, her dog didn't make it. Another dog that didn't make it is a
Maltese named Mr. Benson, who would have been 4-years-old next week.
His owner is FOX19
meteorologist Frank Marzullo.
"It just happened to be that some made
it and some didn't, and I'm so glad that he made it and stuff but at the same
time, I am very sad about the other people who lost their dog," said Gibson.
So how worried should other pet owners be?
Based on the symptoms, Dr. Larry Keller says it's hard to tell because this
could range anywhere from a toxin, to a bacteria or a virus.
"It's scary as far as it goes because it
happens so quickly," said Dr. Keller.
The majority of the pet owners who lost a dog
to the sickness did have another one, but Gibson says doctors told him it's
likely not contagious from dog to dog. Dr. Keller says the age of a dog can
also make a difference in its likelihood of getting sick.
"Young dogs can be susceptible to some
diseases more because their immune system isn't strong. That said, a really old
dog too can be susceptible to it because their immune system is getting
weaker," Dr. Keller explained.
A full statement from Pet Spot reads:
"First and foremost, our deepest
sympathies go out to the families who lost their pets. In eight years, we have
had more than 15,000 customers. We serve at least 1,000 dogs a week, and we
have never had a situation like this. We are trying to find out what happened
but do not have answers right now. In the meantime, we are communicating with
our customers, monitoring the dogs closely and are continuing to take every
precaution in maintaining a clean and safe environment."
-Jeff Voelpel, owner, The Pet Spot
from MedVet say they hope to have test results by the end of the week to
confirm whether these cases are indeed related.