A dog lover has voiced his concern ahead of a show at a kennels in South Tyneside next month – and is planning to stage a protest.
Scott Andrews, who is a member of seven German Shepherd Associations, is fearful the highly contagious Parvovirus could be spread at Cleadon Kennels’ dog show on August 2.
One dog had to be put to sleep at the kennels last week after another died from Parvovirus the previous week, although early investigations suggested the infected dogs contracted the virus before arriving at the kennels, in Cleadon Lane.
It is understood that next Sunday’s show will be taking place at a different part of the kennels, with the dogs who had Parvovirus having been held in a confined area, while there remains some doubt as to whether it will still go ahead.
If it does, Mr Andrews believes there may be a safety issue, and said: “There’s a recommended 14-day incubation period after a dog dies of Parvovirus, but it can stay on the ground where the dogs have walked on and the surrounding areas for up to six months.
“As animal lovers, we’re very concerned that this dog show is going ahead, and believe there is a big risk.
As animal lovers, we’re very concerned that this dog show is going aheadScott Andrews
“We’re going to hold a protest on the day to tell the people going to the dog show about the risks, as they may be unaware. I’ve got nothing against Cleadon Kennels and we’re not trying to cause trouble, but I’m concerned that people will go to the show with their dogs, without knowing that the Parvovirus could still be there.”
The dog show is designed to raise money and awareness about how many dogs are in need of new homes, with a raffle, free micro-chipping and other activities expected to take place from 12pm. A spokesperson for the kennels was unavailable for comment.
A spokesperson for South Tyneside Council said: “The kennels have implemented a detailed disinfection scheme in accordance with best practice using appropriate disinfectants. Infection control is an essential part of the kennel’s operations given the variable or unknown nature, health and immunity of stray animals.
“The typical incubation period is seven to 10 days, though this can vary slightly. Given the timescales of the infections in these particular dogs, it is extremely unlikely that they are linked to Cleadon Kennels.
“The dogs in question also did not have freedom to wander across the site, and were only present within the stray dog section for a short period of time.
“Dog owners are advised to ensure their animals are fully vaccinated. If they are not vaccinated, exposure to other dogs should be minimised. If any owners are in doubt we would recommend they contact their local vet.”