Region’s residents warned of toxic algae blooms

John Reimann of Oakland is left standing in the Russian River after his dog Ginger has had enough of fetching in this 2015 file photograph. That summer, a warning went out to pet owners about a toxic blue green algae bloom in the river that can sicken or kill animals. (Kent Porter / The Press Democrat)


NAPA — Officials in Northern California are warning residents after two dogs died following a swim in a pond where toxic blue-green algae is growing.

People are urged to avoid ponds, rivers and streams in the area of southern Napa County.

The San Francisco Chronicle said Saturday that it’s the second report of dangerous algae in the Bay Area in a week. Oakland’s Lake Temescal was closed following an algae bloom there.

Algae poisoning in people can cause serious injury to the liver, kidney and nervous system if the affected water is swallowed. Exposure requires immediate medical attention.

Officials said the algae blooms are caused by sitting or slow-moving water with an abundance of nutrients.