Nothing is more fun than taking your dog along to the lake! On a hot summer’s day, what’s more, refreshing or fun than enjoying a swim with your dog? Swimming with your dog can be tons of fun; however, what happens if your canine companion drinks water that contains green algae?
Has your dog drunk green algae water? Are you worried the green algae water will make your dog sick? If so, then you’ve come to the right place. We understand it can be scary when your dog does something like this.
In this article, we’ll take a look at green algae water and whether or not it can make your dog sick. Let’s get started!
What is Green Algae Water?
Green algae water is water that is covered with a greenish or bluish coating on the surface. There are certain times when a lake or pond may develop algae growth. Many types of algae (small, aquatic plants that grow on the water’s surface) are completely safe. However, there are some types of “algae” that are not plants. Instead, they are bacteria.
The bacteria may cause a green or green-blue scum on lake or pond water, which is why the bacteria are called cyanobacteria (blue bacteria). These bacteria live on the surface of the water and create their own food. When there are too many cyanobacteria, the water’s color changes to green or bluish-green. The bacteria may even cause a scum on top of the water that’s orange, red, yellow, or brown.
Cyanobacteria can live in fresh, brackish, or even saltwater. Usually, the water is still, so you don’t often see this type of scum forming on rivers or streams.
So, what happens if a dog drinks water that contains cyanobacteria? Can the green algae water make a dog sick?
Green Algae Water & Dogs
Not all green algae water is bad for dogs; however, there are certain types of cyanobacteria that do produce toxins that can make a dog sick. For this reason, if your dog drinks any amount of green algae water, it’s best to consider the water as toxic until the vet can prove it’s not.
Symptoms of Green Algae Water Ingestion in Dogs
You may notice these symptoms if your dog has drunk green algae water:
- Breathing problems
- Blood in stools
If your dog has had a lot of green algae water to drink, it’s best to err on the side of caution. Do call the vet right away. There’s no known antidote to green algae toxin, so the vet will need to provide aggressive supportive treatment to your dog as soon as possible.
So, call the vet right away and don’t wait for your dog to possibly develop symptoms. Green algae water can be toxic enough to kill a dog. Waiting to call the vet could cost your dog his life.