FOX19 Investigates: Three local dogs die after sudden illness

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - UPDATE: New information has been revealed on the investigation of three local dogs who died after coming down with a sudden illness.

According to the dogs' owners, the Norwood pet care facility where they stayed and veterinarians, none of the local dogs ate food recently put on a voluntary recall list by Procter & Gamble.

The mysterious illness has pet owners puzzled.  Veterinarians now say a new virus seems to be the most likely cause, and it does not appear to be an ongoing epidemic.

All of the affected dogs recently stayed at The Pet Spot in Norwood.

Earlier this month, three dogs showed symptoms of violent rectal bleeding and vomiting. All three died in a matter of days.

The Pet Spot temporarily closed its daycare on Friday while the owners waited to hear from the Ohio Veterinarian's Office and the Department of Agriculture to determine the appropriate date to reopen the daycare.

Around the same time, P&G voluntarily recalled a variety of Iams and Eukanuba dry pet foods.  Over the weekend, The Pet Spot owner told us in an email, "We isolated every bag of the food we had on hand at the time of the recall and have been able to confirm it was not part of the recall."

A representative from MedVet, the veterinary clinic that treated the dogs, sent an email to one pet owner saying, "From what we know, it does not appear that the P&G food recall is involved at all."

MedVet says throughout the course of the testing, veterinarians at Ohio State University found what is called avascular necrosis, or destruction of the blood vessels. They also looked for bacteria and fungus and have found none so far.

Meanwhile, veterinarians have asked experts at Ohio State University to help figure out what caused these dogs to die. will update this story once those test results come back.

Late Monday, The Pet Spot announced on Facebook that all of the veterinarian infectious disease tests have come back clean, as well as tests done on the facility's food and water.

Once final results come in, The Pet Spot believes they will reopen on Monday, August 26.

Our previous report from 8/16/13:

FOX19 is investigating a possible link between the deaths of three Cincinnati area pets and a massive, voluntary pet food recall.

Three dogs died this week who shared two common denominators.; they all stayed at a local pet daycare and they all ate a type of pet food that was recalled by P&G on Wednesday.

According to Pet Spot, six dogs at their facility showed symptoms of HGE.  Three of the dogs died, three took ill.

MedVet, a pet hospital in Madisonville, is waiting on test results to confirm that the illness that caused the deaths and illness of those dogs was HGE. Results were expected Friday but may not be available until sometime next week.

Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis (HGE) is a disease of dogs characterized by sudden vomiting and bloody diarrhea. The symptoms are usually severe, and HGE can be fatal if not treated. HGE is most common in young adult dogs of any breed, but especially small dogs. It's not contagious.

The three dogs who died this week all stayed at Pet Spot, dog care facility in Norwood, Ohio. One of those dogs was Mr. Benson, FOX19 Morning Meteorologist Frank Marzullo's 4-year-old dog.

The owner of Pet Spot, Jeff Voelpel, posted a statement on the daycare's Facebook page, indicating that the shop will be closed from Friday, August 16 until Monday, August 19 in light of recent stomach illnesses. The daycare plans to reopen on Tuesday, August 20.

According to Pet Spot, all six of the dogs who were sick ate a type of dog food on the recall list, released by P&G on Wednesday.

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