If you haven’t heard, there is a new craze shaking up the pet industry, and it is NOT GOOD. A “blue-green” algae, also called Cyanobacteria, has reportedly been popping up around the country, killing many dogs that come in contact with it. Reports began circulating in the last few weeks, and the numbers unfortunately keep growing. Dogs have been visiting their favorite swimming holes to cool off in the summer heat, and just an hour or so after coming in contact with this algae, their bodies begin to break down with an often fatal outcome. Many counties all across the country, from the Pacific Northwest to New Jersey, have begun to take action, imposing swimming bans in what have traditionally been public lakes and ponds.
This toxic algae can be hard to spot, but not impossible.
The algae will often float on the surface of the water, looking like foam, scum or mats. The algae is commonly a blue-ish color or a vibrant green, but some toxic algae can appear brown or red as well. This algae commonly produces an unpleasant odor as well, but that doesn’t stop dogs from checking it out. Many dogs are even attracted to the new smell and taste.
If your dog is acting strange after a swim, TAKE THEM TO THE VET! Not all of these encounters with the toxic algae have been fatal. Each survival story has one thing in common, the dogs were immediately rushed to their vet. Dogs will very commonly lick themselves after a swim in an attempt to groom their fur. Just a few seconds in the water will lead to the deadly toxins becoming stuck in the animal’s fur, which is quickly transferred into their bodies as they lick themselves clean.
Locations where this toxic algae has been spotted:
North Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, New Jersey, Colorado, and the Florida and Mississippi Coasts
The Lilly Brush Team