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Mystery after dozens of pets fall ill on North Yorkshire coast

Scarborough beach

Pet owners are being warned after a number of pets have fallen ill after walking on North Yorkshire beaches.

The warning came direct from Vets Yorkshire Pet Care's Facebook account.

“I work within several practices up and down the North East coast and we have recently been inundated with dogs coming off the beaches with vomiting and diarrhoea,” the warning read.

“Personally until the local authorities have got to the bottom of it I would not recommend taking your pets on the beach for the foreseeable future.

“I have been in touch with governing bodies and they are currently looking into it.

“If your dog is showing symptoms please make the local authorities aware as well as seeking veterinary attention should your pet need it.”

There has been reports of dogs suffering from sickness and diarrhoea after walking on Scarborough's, Whitby's and Robin Hood's Bay's beaches.

Whilst speculation is circulating around if this is a virus, no explanation has yet been given.

But, East Riding of Yorkshire Council says there is currently no direct link between a spate of dog illness and walking on local beaches.

Kirsty Salisbury, General Manager (Coastal), said:

"We are aware of reports on social media and in the local press of dogs becoming unwell following visiting areas of local beaches in the northern part of our coastline. We have been liaising with external partners during the course of yesterday to try and establish a cause, whilst also liaising with local colleagues, and also nationally.

"From reports from local veterinary surgeries, the illness they are seeing within dogs and the tests carried out have not provided any direct links with the use of beaches. We would advise that, if your pet becomes unwell and has continuing sickness and diarrhoea, you should make an appointment to have your pet seen. It appears that many dogs are becoming unwell even though they have not visited beaches, so it may be that this is a general illness amongst dogs.

"Our Coastal Services team regularly inspect the beaches for signs of any irregular occurrences and at present there is nothing unusual; however, this will continue to be monitored and action will be taken, if and when necessary.  We encourage people to be aware and mindful, and if they are on the beach, or anywhere, not to let their dogs off the lead, so that owners can see what the dogs are picking up and potentially eating.

"The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is aware of the incidents and is in contact with the Animal and Plant Health Agency."

Scarborough Borough Council have also issued a statement in which they say that while some dogs affected by the illness had been walker on beaches, others with the same condition had not.

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