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Could Water Actually Be Harming Your Dog?

How your dog's love for water could end in tragedy: This deep dive into water intoxication will change the way you think about your dog's hydration and playtime.

hyponatremia in dogs


  • It doesn’t happen often, but dogs — especially those who love being in water or playing with sprinklers or hoses — can develop water intoxication, which is a potentially fatal condition
  • Water intoxication causes hyponatremia, a condition in which sodium levels drops to dangerously low levels; hyponatremia is a medical emergency, and even with aggressive veterinary care, many dogs don’t survive, so it’s important to take commonsense steps to avoid tragedy
  • Signs of hyponatremia include lethargy, disorientation, and vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Hypernatremia, or saltwater poisoning, is another potentially fatal condition that can develop in canine companions who spend time at the beach consuming too much saltwater
  • Symptoms of saltwater poisoning include increased thirst, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, disorientation, tremors, and seizures; if you suspect your dog has consumed too much saltwater, seek emergency veterinary care immediately

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