Many local parks and hiking trails offer handy dog-friendly drinking fountains that are at dog level, which are great for when you have a parched pooch at the end of your leash. Simply fill up the basin and your pooch has their very own water bowl...right? However, if you notice that the doggy drinking basin has standing water in it, you might think twice before leading your pooch over for a drink.
I say this because just I strolled over to give Zazou a slurp of water at our ususal dog drinking hole, I noticed none other than a fluffed out pigeon bathing and doing the backstroke in the designated dog water dish (See Exhibit A above). Not good. Not good at all. Suffice to say we moved on to a different watering hole.
Don't Let Your Dog Drink from a Bird bath
Dogs drink water from lots of unsavory places, but a bird bath is one of the worst. Birds carry fungal diseases that infect both dogs and humans. Standing water often contains the parasite Giardia (protozoa) which lives in still water found in bird baths, wells, puddles, lakes, streams, etc. If you are going to give your dog an outside water bowl, be sure to put it someplace where birds won't get to it.
Giardia symptoms in dogs include, but are not limited to, recurring diarrhea, weight loss, loss of appetite, listlessness and fatigue, nausea and vomiting or excessive grass eating. Giardia is a very big problem, one that often goes undetected by most veterinarians...so be vigilant about where your dog gets their drinking water!