A WATER-loving dog spent 36 hours on a drip after swallowing potentially poisonous bacteria in a well-used lake.

Worried Dave McAnulty, 40, and Emma Carmichael, 40, rushed their Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Derek, to an emergency vet on Friday night, after he waded around and drank water from the lake at Canvey Heights Country Park.

A small notice advising people about an outbreak of cyanobacteria – also known as blue-green algae – had been put up by Castle Point Council.

However, Mr McAnulty of Keegan Place, Canvey, said more warning should have been given after he learnt about the algae’s potentially fatal affect.

Mr McAnulty said: “It shuts down their kidneys and liver, but once they show symptoms, it’s too late. I’m relieved he is OK, but I’m very annoyed with Castle Point Council for not signing this properly.

“There were two A4 pieces of paper stapled to a bit of wood placed about 7ft into the water, which are barely legible due to the size of the font used.”

The algae can produce toxins that are harmful to humans, animals and marine life.

Mr McAnulty claims fish in the lake were “gasping for air” at the water’s edge and one carp was floating dead on the surface.

A Castle Point Council spokeswoman said: “This algae is a naturally-occurring problem at certain times of the year and this year is particularly bad, due to recent weather conditions.

“Signs are posted around the water, but sadly they are frequently vandalised and as soon as we replace them, they are either stolen or defaced again.”

Derek was rushed to YourVets, in Rayleigh , where he was put on a drip straight away.

He was allowed home on Sunday morning having suffered from diarrhoea and tiredness.