We all enjoy a beautiful day at the beach much more when our furry four-legged companion accompanies us and plays with us or with the waves. But perhaps we do not know that a dog drinks sea water it is very possible that it ends up intoxicated and that can be a serious problem for its health.
Dogs intuitively tend to hydrate themselves by drinking water from puddles, rivers or whatever means they find in their way when they are thirsty, without being aware that if they drink salt water it will really make them feel bad.
We are going to explain what is salt water poisoning in dogs and what should we do if our dog shows symptoms. We will also explain how to prevent our dog from drinking sea water.
Index of contents
- 1 Why is beach water bad for dogs?
- 2 Dog poisoning from drinking sea water
- 3 What to do if my dog has drunk seawater and has been poisoned?
- 4 How to prevent a dog from drinking water from the beach?
Why is beach water bad for dogs?
Sea water contains high amounts of chlorine and sodium, what we know as sodium chloride or common salt. Dogs cannot drink salty water because their sodium level would rise dramatically causing intoxication.
In addition to the salt itself, the beach water it is very harmful for dogs due to its high content of toxins and bacteria, sand in suspension and remains of marine algae. The dogs, feeling dehydrated, will drink water from the beach without knowing that they will end up intoxicated.
It is not that the beach water is bad only for dogs, if a human or any other animal drank a similar amount of sea water it would also end up intoxicated to a greater or lesser extent.
Dog poisoning from drinking sea water
If our dog sticks out his tongue and takes a small sip into the beach water, the most normal thing is that absolutely nothing happens, we should not be alarmists either. But if you drink a considerable amount of water from the beach, you will end up intoxicated without a doubt.
Poisoning in dogs from drinking salty water can be more or less serious, and depending on the severity we will have to go to a vet or we can help our dog on our own.
These are the symptoms shown by dogs intoxicated from drinking beach water:
- Very liquid and sometimes explosive diarrhea
- General dehydration
- Nervousness, restlessness, lack of strength
- Decadence of mind
A dog will drink sea water to hydrate itself, but the salty water will produce an opposite effect. Making the dog have diarrhea and vomiting, which will further dehydrate it. This can be very dangerous, especially on hot summer days.
What to do if my dog has drunk seawater and has been poisoned?
The main thing is to take the dog to a cool place and make clean and fresh water available to him. Needless to say, it must be drinking water (fresh) and not sea water. It is normal for the dog to have diarrhea and vomiting because it will be expelling the salt water that it has ingested.
The problem is that salt water may have affected the natural bacterial life of your intestines and diarrhea persists for more than a day. On the other hand, if the sodium level increases a lot in a dog, it can even die.
So the bottom line is to evaluate and use common sense. If our dog has drunk little water from the beach and has a little diarrhea but is well, surely it will be enough to go to a cool place and put fresh, clean water at your disposal to hydrate while the diarrhea is passing.
A slightly astringent diet like a little boiled rice with chicken meat (at room temperature and without bones), can be a good option to help you recover from diarrhea. The use of probiotics such as “pro-enteric” or “Daforte” can also be of great help.
However, if we observe that our dog is unwell, diarrhea persists, is down or is simply an old dog, a puppy or a dog with some chronic disease, we must go to a veterinaryn in an obligatory way.
How to prevent a dog from drinking water from the beach?
It may seem complicated to teach a dog to differentiate what type of water it can and cannot drink, but in reality it is much easier than it seems. At general levels with a little patience and insistence, in just a day or two our dog will know that he should not drink salt water.
The trick is always be attentive to our dog and that when we see him trying to drink water from the beach, we call him and offer him clean and fresh water. We can carry a portable drinker along with a bottle of clean and cool water for him.
When the dog drinks the water we have given him and not the beach water, we will congratulate him. It is also recommended to leave a drinking fountain under our umbrella, for him, making sure that he always has fresh water. It is a very simple and practical trick that will help us to avoid that our dog ends up intoxicated by drinking sea water.