A DEADLY toxic algae which has already killed two dogs is spreading across the UK, scientists have warned.
The potentially toxic water can be harmful to humans too, they have said.
It has been found in rivers and lakes across Scotland and the Lake District and the recent hot weather means it is spreading.
Two dogs have reportedly already died this summer in Scotland as a result of drinking the toxic water, The Lancashire Post reports.
When ingested, the blue-green algae can cause damage to the liver or the nervous system in both humans and animals.
Anyone who drinks it may develop rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, fever and muscle and joint pain.
Prof Laurence Carvalho, from the who works at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, said blue-green algae had been a particular problem this summer.
He said: “Not only has it been very warm but it has also been very dry, which means they have not been flushed out of water courses by rain.
“Animals will drink from water if they are thirsty and it seems dogs are particularly affected because they seem to be attracted by the smell of the algae.
“Algal blooms can be a major health hazard as they commonly produce potent toxins that can result in people experiencing skin rashes, eye irritations, fever, muscle pain and worse.”
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Warning signs have been put on affected lakes.
Experts are urging the public to be on the lookout for the toxic sludge and to report the sighting to the Environment Agency.
There have been no reported deaths as a result of contact with algae in the UK.
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