Cherokee County

Dog dies nearly instantly after swim at popular metro Atlanta lake

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. — A heartbreaking Facebook post by a local couple went viral this weekend. They said their beloved dog ingested blue-green algae blooms at Allatoona Lake and then suddenly died that same day.

The owners said their dog was healthy one moment and dead the next.

The post by Morgan and Patrick Fleming was shared thousands of times.

Channel 2's Audrey Washington spoke to a veterinarian, who said the toxin kills almost instantly.

“One study showed that 58 percent of dogs die of this straight out,” said Dr. Sherry Weaver, of Animal Hospital of Towne Lake.

According to the Fleming's Facebook post, by the time they got Arya to the emergency room, she couldn't walk, and minutes later she was brain dead. They believe blue-green algae in the popular lake in metro Atlanta is what ultimately killed their dog.


Weaver said just one sip of the toxin is deadly.

“It completely kills the cells in the liver it can also cause neurological damage,” Weaver said.

Adrian Marius is a part of the Allatoona Lake life group. He heard about the death this weekend and wants the water here tested.

Washington asked Marius if dog owners should bring their pets to the lake.

“I wouldn’t. Not until they know exactly what’s going on,” Marius said.

Weaver said there are other things dog owners can do, if they still want their pets at the lake.

“If there’s blue green algae sitting right at the edge, try to find a different spot,” Weaver said.

This morning we thought, it’s so hot! Let’s go to the lake! We took our sweet Arya to the lake and had the best day...

Posted by Morgan Fleming on Saturday, August 10, 2019