The Grant County Health District issued a blue-green algae health advisory over the weekend because a dog died shortly after swimming in water near Priest Rapids Dam.
The health district recommends the public avoid contact with water near Desert Aire along the shoreline and keep a lookout for blue-green algae blooms.
An investigation is underway, but the dog became ill and died shortly after swimming in waters at the Priest Rapids Recreation Area, according to a news release from the heath district.
They are collecting water samples to confirm that blue-green algae is present in the area.
Blue-green algae has taken a tragic toll on Inland Northwest pets this summer, with four dogs dying in the Spokane area after swimming in waters confirmed to contain blue-green algae in early August.
Pets are especially at risk to blue-green algae because of their tendency to ingest water and lick their fur after swimming.
Blue-green algae is actually not algae at all, but a large class of cyanobacteria that thrive in warm and nutrient-rich waters. The bacteria produces toxins that are dangerous in high enough concentrations.
Children and the immunocompromised are also at particular risk of being affected by the cyanobacteria.
Blue-green algae will usually look like gobs of floating scum or greenish streaks of oil in the water.
Grant County will release findings from the water samples later this week.
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