A BRADFORD vet has warned dog owners to keep an eye on their pets as there has been an increase in dogs are becoming ill in the area.

Janice Slater BVMS MRCVS, a veterinary surgeon, and Director of Baildon Veterinary Centre said: "Over the last couple of weeks, Baildon Veterinary Centre has seen a very large increase in the number of dogs with acute vomiting and diarrhoea.

"The dogs are often lethargic, inappetent, and have a temperature. In most cases, they have responded well to symptomatic treatment - anti-vomiting injection and probiotics, with oral supportive fluids and a light diet. Some cases have needed intravenous fluids and hospitalisation. All of the dogs have made a full recovery.

Speaking to colleagues in the profession, this outbreak, of what is likely a viral gastroenteritis, is not isolated to the Baildon area and is much more widespread - throughout Yorkshire and even further afield.

There is a good chance that the outbreak of a similar type of illness on the east coast is the same thing although we cannot be certain of this.

If your dog shows symptoms of acute vomiting and diarrhoea with lethargy, call your vet and they will give advice and arrange to see it if necessary."

Dogs across the region are being affected by this unknown lurgy, as The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) confirmed to the T&A's sister paper, The Northern, Echo earlier this week, that they were aware that dogs were falling ill with 'sickness and diarrhoea' after being walked on North and East Yorkshire beaches, however, this now appears to be a wider spread problem.

A dog owner from Bradford commented: "Both my dogs have suffered, I was walking down West Lane, The Glen and Baildon Bank. Both had chronic vomiting, explosive diarrhoea and had to be kept in at vets on a drip as they became very ill. My young boy dog was bad for seven days with four nights at vets."

Another commented: "My elderly Jack Russell was pretty ill with some kind of gastroenteritis over Christmas. Sickness but mainly diarrhoea, very lethargic too. Seems much better now but it took about 10 days for him to get back to normal. He's only been walked in Haworth recently so not sure what's going about."

Thankfully, there have not been any reports of deaths.