In late April, a cocker spaniel died of suspected blue green algae poisoning after a swim in Anton Lakes, Hampshire.
Blue green algae, or cyanobacteria, are a group of bacteria that can contain dangerous toxins which can be harmful and potentially fatal to pets, livestock and birds if ingested even in small quantities.
Dogs can swallow it by drinking water from an affected lake, river or pond or while licking their fur after going for a swim.
It’s possible for dogs to come into contact with the bacteria even if they don’t go into the water for a paddle, as toxic blooms are often blown to the edges of water bodies.
According to trend data supplied by Professor Alan Radford and his team at SAVSNET, University of Liverpool, suspected or confirmed cases reported by veterinary practices peak in July and August, at the height of the summer season, and aren’t restricted to any one part of the UK.
BVA President Justine Shotton said: “Many dogs love nothing more than a paddle in a lake to cool off in this weather, but we’d urge pet owners to keep…