As temperatures rise and a hairy creature’s thoughts turn to summer swimming, owners across the country are asking themselves: is it ok for my pet to take a dip in the family pool? People start to wonder if chlorine poisoning is possible in pets. Here’s what you need to know:
Is Chlorine Toxic for Dogs and Cats?
Pool water contains very dilute levels of chlorine, and is unlikely to cause chlorine poisoning in humans or animals. From a risk management standpoint, a pet is more likely to become ill from a dunk in a standing pool of water, or a lake filled with unknown microorganisms than they are from swimming in a properly maintained pool full of chlorinated water.
What Are the Risks of My Pet’s Exposure to Chlorinated Pool Water?
Drinking chlorinated water may cause minor GI irritation, but it should not cause serious issues for pets. Fortunately, most symptoms related to chlorine are minor. Pets who swim for long periods in chlorinated pool water may exhibit some signs of sensitivity, such as red eyes or itchy skin.
Pets that swim regularly may experience more frequent ear infections. While owners may wonder if this is related to chlorine exposure, recurrent infections are more likely related to damp ears than the chlorine itself.