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What You Should Know About Blue-Green Algae

Scientifically known as Cyanobacteria, Blue-Green Algae is a bacteria that is incredibly harmful to both people and pets. It’s a microscopic plant-based organism that prospers in ponds, rivers, lakes and streams that are rich in phosphorus and nitrogen. Generally, it is not visibly noticed in the water. However, populations can grow, creating a very large bloom. They primarily present as blue-green in colour or can also be olive green or red. Blooms typically grow in late summer to early fall and thrive in stagnant, warm and shallow water. Unfortunately, these blooms also present with very distinct odours: fresh blooms may smell like freshly mowed grass, while older blooms smell like rotting garbage.

If you happen to suspect a blue-green algae bloom, it is imperative that you and your pet avoid it as many varieties produce toxins that can be dangerous and even deadly. Do not use, drink, swim or bathe in infected water and restrict pets and livestock access.

How do I know if my pet has been exposed?
Symptoms can occur in as little as 15 minutes after exposure or can take several days to manifest. Signs an owner should look out for are:

  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Weakness and/or staggering
  • Drooling
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Convulsions or seizures

If your pet shows any of these signs, please contact your veterinarian as it was highly likely to be an emergency.

Written by: Meghan Toope, RVT

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What You Should Know About Blue-Green Algae

Scientifically known as Cyanobacteria, Blue-Green Algae is a bacteria that is incredibly harmful to both people and pets.

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Last updated: January 18, 2021

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we have made some important updates to our operating policies.

1. WE CAN NOW SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

2. SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

3. OPERATING HOURS

We are available to serve you and your pets during the following hours:

Monday to Friday: 7:30 am - 8:00 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
Sunday: CLOSED

NEW PET OWNERS

Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Spryfield Animal Hospital