Many dogs love to swim, whether it’s in a lake or in a swimming pool, but even if your dog is a natural born swimmer he or she might need a little extra help. Here are some easy tips on staying safe in the pool.
Even if your dog is good at swimming, never leave a dog unsupervised in the pool. It’s easy to get distracted, but keep your eyes on the dog. If something happens they might not be able to bark for help. Drowning is a silent death both for people and pets.
Start slowly and build confidence
Most dogs are cautious the first times in a swimming pool. Start slowly and let your furry friend build confidence.
Keep track of the time
Swimming is great exercise, but it’s important to limit the time your dog spends in the pool. Especially older dogs and puppies often underestimate how tired they are. Even dogs in their prime might be using new muscles when swimming, and can tire quickly. Start with brief dips in the pool and increase the time gradually.
Teach your dog how to get out of the pool
Some pools have steps on one side. It is important to teach your dog where they are, because it’s impossible for a doggie to get from the water up on the ledge. Other pools only have a ladder. It is possible to teach a dog how to use a ladder, but it doesn’t come naturally to them, so this might take some time. Patient practice makes perfect!
When the swim is over it’s important to rinse off all pool water – otherwise your dog might lick it off and ingest chemicals. Chlorine and other pool chemicals can also irritate the skin. Also make sure to dry the ears. You can dab them gently with a soft towel.
Have fun, and enjoy the summer!