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An Alert For Dog Owners Who Feed Their Pet Raw Fish

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Sonora, CA – A warning for dog owners regarding raw fish and a potentially fatal illness called Salmon Poisoning Disease.

As we reported earlier, the last weekend in April was the opening of trout season, and it is one of the fish that, if eaten raw, can be deadly. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) cautions that trout stocked in some waters in the North Central Region are more likely to be infected with the flukes that cause the disease. Fish that can carry the disease also include salmon, steelhead, and other freshwater fish carcasses, according to the CDFW. However, the parasite cannot survive if the fish is cooked.

Flukes occur naturally in waters in Northern California and are not harmful to humans but can cause symptoms similar to distemper in dogs. Pet owners should watch for these symptoms: a rise in body temperature, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, listlessness, and rapid weight loss. If those signs appear, state wildlife officials advise that the dog be taken to a veterinarian. They added, “Salmon poisoning disease is treatable if caught in time, but death usually occurs within two weeks of eating the infected fish. Without treatment, 90% of dogs showing symptoms die.”