NewsRegionAnne Arundel County


Mussel crusted sticks near bay cause concern for pets

Posted at 10:34 PM, Jul 13, 2018

The Mahogathy River has seen an explosion of Mussels like this before in 2004 and 2014.

The particular bi-valves are called Dark False Mussels. The big rains we had this spring made the salinity count low in the water and that is ideal for these mussels. 

As these tiny mussels grow on everything, dogs go in the water and may chew on mussel crusted sticks. Dogs deaths have happened in the past when the mussels bloomed.

Mussels filter toxins from algae blooms, but that doesn't necessarily mean it can be harmful.

"We have not seen a direct correlation between any toxins in the dark false mussels so we can't say there is a linkage between that and any potential animal health issue," said Dave Michael, DNR

But there is a real benefit of all these mussels in the water.

"They are a filter feeder so they actually clean the water."

Despite the lack of any scientific proof still, some veterinarians think pets owners should be careful about letting their dogs use mussel encrusted things as chew toys.

"It is becoming a large concern."

So maybe it's best to just keep an eye on your dog in the water if you see an abundance of these type of oysters and relax and enjoy the clear water.