Dog owners look out, toxic algae seen in MI lakes

Cheryl Sanders
August 13, 2019

Owners Melissa Martin and Denise Mintz took their three pups out for a walk near a pond in Wilmington on Thursday night and allowed them to get in for a swim. 'We need your prayers. After arriving at the hospital, Izzy, another West Highland White Terrier, and Harpo, a doodle, also began having seizures.

Dog owners in the Southeast are spreading the word about the dangers of contaminated water following the deaths of their beloved pets.

In an emotional Facebook post, Martin wrote: "At 12:08 AM, our dogs crossed the rainbow bridge together". Dogs can be exposed to the bacteria by drinking it or licking it off their fur. About 30 minutes after leaving the lake, Arya started making "weird" noises and vomiting in the auto, pet parent Morgan Fleming wrote on Facebook, as per 11Alive. The couple drover her to the emergency room, and unfortunately, she passed away there.

With the heat and this summer it's the flawless recipe for algae to form in the water. Nitrogen and phosphorus enter bodies of water as a result of human activities, such as agriculture, imperfect wastewater systems, fossil fuels, fertilizers, and the use of soaps and detergents containing those nutrients.

The culprit, Martin's veterinarian said, was poisoning from blue-green algae present in the pond where they played. The toxic algae is usually blue, green, brown, or red, with a slimy texture and often a terrible smell, the EPA noted.

Melissa said there were no warning signs near the Wilmington pond and it was only after her vet told her it was algae poisoning, she realised what had happened. They've set up a fundraiser to purchase signs and erect them in front of contaminated water to prevent further pet deaths.

So far, the page has raised more than $2,700 and been shared more than 15,000 times on social media.

Martin has launched a GoFundMe to raise money to construct signs at bodies of water warning about the deadly bacteria.

They told CNN they thought the cyanobacteria they saw in the pond was flower blooms.

Some of the health complications dogs can experience include, lethargy, lack of appetite, tremors or seizures.

According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria, are microscopic algae that typically grow in fresh bodies of water.

If your dog somehow makes contact with the algae, rinse them off immediately (while wearing gloves).

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