Does your dog like to play in the water? Too much of a good thing can be dangerous, so look out for water intoxication!
Water intoxication, also known as hyponatremia is a relatively rare but potentially fatal condition that is most commonly seen in dogs that love to play in the water. Water games that involve retrieving items or diving into pools to catch toys can cause them to ingest large quantities of water very quickly. It can also happen when they “catch” pressurized water from sprinklers or hoses.
Excessive amounts of water cause the body to lose sodium. The body’s cells begin to fill with water and swell. If the cells in the brain swell, it can affect the central nervous system, which can be fatal.
- loss of coordination
- glazed eyes
- excessive salivation
- difficulty breathing
Water intoxication progresses quickly, so if your pet has been playing in the water and begins to show any of the signs mentioned above, it’s crucial to seek veterinary care immediately to save your dog’s life.
Treatment of water intoxication typically includes IV delivery of electrolytes, diuretics, and drugs to reduce brain swelling. With aggressive veterinary care, some dogs are able to recover, but sadly, many do not.
It’s important to closely watch dogs that are very active in water and ensure they take regular breaks in between playing. Be especially careful on days when the water is rough. If your dog empties their water bowl after playing hard or exercising, ensure they are rested before refilling the bowl.
Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of water intoxication to keep your furry family members safe!
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at 204-269-8162 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by Centennial Animal Hospital