3 Dogs Die Hours After Playing In Pond Filled With Toxic Algae

August 13, 2019 - 3:58 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The same type of dangerous algae bloom that prompted swimming bans at several New Jersey lakes this summer has now been linked to the deaths of three dogs in North Carolina.

A Wilmington resident said she took her dogs to swim in a pond last week.

A short time later, the dogs started seizing and died within three hours.

Jeff Tittel with the New Jersey Sierra Club says dog owners everywhere need to be careful.

"When you see three dogs dying in a very short period of time it should send up an alarm to pet owners everywhere to make sure their pets are protected and to stay out of these pollutted waters," Tittel told CBS2.

According to the CDC, blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, are microscopic organisms that live primarily in fresh water and salt water, at the surface and below. They usually multiply and bloom when the water is warm, stagnant, and rich in nutrients from sources such as fertilizer runoff or septic tank overflows. They are usually blue-green in color.

Pets that come in contact with the toxic algae bloom should be immediately rinsed off with fresh water. 

Owners should bring their pet to a vet or call poison control if they believe the animal has ingested the contaminated water.

Signs and symptoms in pets include loss of energy or appetite, vomiting, stumbling or falling, foaming at the mouth, diarrhea, convulsions, excessive drooling, tremors, or any other unexplained sickness.