If you enjoy swimming in our beautiful lakes and rivers, it is important to know about harmful algae blooms.
Harmful algae can be found in water all around the world. It is actually not an algae at all, but instead is a type of ancient bacteria (Cyanobacteria) that date back to the Precambian times. We hear about them more now because the earth is warming up, and there are more pollutants in our waters that encourage the growth of these organisms.
What you need to know is that this Harmful Algae is found in our lakes, ponds, rivers and streams in Oregon. It may appear as a greenish or bluish scum just under the surface of the water that can move depending upon the flow and the wind. Sometimes, just after a bloom, the visible scum will have dissipated, but the toxins can remain.
In Douglas County, most of the poisoned dogs have ingested the toxin from water that was trapped in rock formations carved by the river. In these pools, the toxins (most commonly Anatoxin -A ) are concentrated in the warm water and it only takes a small drink to kill a dog.
Please check the water before you swim, or allow your dog to swim or drink the water. If you see any type of scum on the water, KEEP YOUR DOG OUT! There is no antidote and you can't filter this with a water filter.
Recently a young family took their puppy swimming in Zion National Park., and 20 minutes later the puppy died from Anatoxin- a toxicity. She was only 6 months old. Her name was Keanna. This photo was taken 20 minutes before she died. Please don't let this happen to your dog.
If you would like to learn more go to www.cdc.gov/habs