We have been made aware that with the warmer weather toxic blue-green algae has been making an appearance again in some still water ponds (we understand that some has been detected up at Harlaw in the Pentlands and that there has been some suspected in the smaller pond areas on Arthur Seat although no notices are up yet) .
If ingested it can be highly toxic and can make your dog seriously ill (it can be fatal in some cases). Be alert and we would recommend erring on the side of caution if the water has any of the following:
- green globs floating below the surface
- surface scum, mats or film
- looks like spilled paint
Symptoms of blue-green algae poisining can include the following: weakness, unsteadiness, muscle cramps, twitching, and difficulty breathing within 15 to 20 minutes of an animal ingesting contaminated water. Severely affected animals can develop seizures, heart failure, paralysis, and die even with prompt and appropriate treatment.
We absolutely don't want to scare people and it will only be small areas of water that are affected but we thought it better to make people aware to allow you to check the water your dog swims in before letting them go in for a cool down.
(Poster image credited to Oregon Dept of Human Services)