Pet dogs are being probed as a potential cause of a mysterious hepatitis outbreak striking children across the world.
Health chiefs claim a ‘high’ number of the sickened children, who are aged 10 and under, come from families which own dogs or have had ‘dog exposures’.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), tasked with hunting down why dozens of children have developed the unusual type of liver disease, said the ‘significance of this finding is being explored’.
Officials did not explain how dogs could potentially be to blame.
Experts said the link was a ‘bit far-fetched’ given how common dog ownership is in the UK.
Meanwhile, officials today revealed another 18 youngsters have been struck down with the illness, bringing the UK’s total to 163 since January. Eleven have needed a liver transplant.
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