A swim in a lake turns deadly for several North Carolina dogs because of blue-green algae lurking in the water. Even though it looks like algae it’s actually a form of bacteria usually found in lakes and ponds when the water is warm, stagnant, and rich in nutrients.
This comes from things like fertilizer runoff or septic tank overflows. The blue-green color forms when the bacteria clump together and typically builds up around the edges of ponds and lakes.
It can also look like foam or pea soup. Veterinarians say it can cause liver failure if your pets drink it.
Bloody diarrhea, vomiting, seizures, and collapse are also symptoms of blue-green algae poisoning but by the time a dog shows these signs its usually too late.
Dr. Mitsi Bennett says, “There really is nothing you can do about it. You can rush the animal to the vet, and hope for the best, and get some IV fluids going, but by the time the animals there it’s probably going to be gone.”
Blue-green algae can kill a dog in just 15 minutes so if you see signs of it in a lake or pond experts say to keep your dog away.