Downriver neighbors complain of smelly water; animals getting sick

- Many Downriver residents are wondering what's going on with their foul-smelling water that appears to be getting several animals sick.

The Great Lakes Water Authority has said the foul-smelling water in the Downriver communities was safe to drink and that the odor has been corrected, but some people claim it still smells - and now there are questions about some animals getting sick.

Ten 8-week-old mixed breed puppies from Melvindale are recovering from a bacterial infection. They had to be rushed to specialists at Wilson Veterinary Hospital after all of them, including their mom, began vomiting and having diarrhea early Sunday morning.

"Being able to say for sure where it came from, we don't know for sure. We know that our puppies were drinking tap water in the Downriver community. Since then, we have switched to bottled water," says Mike Diesel with Detroit Youth & Dog Rescue.

Other animal groups claim at least a dozen other animals have suffered the same symptoms within the past few days. All animals live in Downriver communities.

Other Downriver residents took to Twitter and Facebook Sunday saying the water still smells, asking city officials to share their thoughts.

The Great Lakes Water Authority, however, maintains the water is safe in a statement Sunday saying, "When taste and odor issues were raised in a number of Downriver communities, GLWA expanded its testing, increasing the number of samples being taken at the Southwest Water Treatment Facility, which serves these communities. Results of this scaled up testing reinforce that regulatory water standards are being achieved, and that the water is safe." -Cheryl Porter, COO, GLWA

It's not known right now what initially caused the odor. FOX 2 has not received any reports of boil water advisories.

We have reached out to several Downriver governments and politicians for their thoughts about the water. The majority have not been very vocal yet, but the mayor of Woodhaven says she will be conducting her own tests, independent of the GLWA.

UPDATE 1/16/2017 11:30 A.M.: The City of Woodhaven sent samples of their water supply to an independent lab, Paragon Laboratories. The City says the lab found the water samples to be absent of E Coli and Coliform Bacteria. 

This is a developing story. We will have updates on the latest water testings tonight on FOX 2 News at 5 p.m.

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