Swimming is not only enjoyable for you and your family in the summer, but also enjoyable for your dog. Many dogs love swimming and can learn to swim quickly, however it can be dangerous for dogs just like humans if you do not take safety precautions. Here are some tips for dog swimming safety:
- Teach your dog to swim like you would teach a human. You can spend some time practicing swimming in a shallow area, just like when teaching a child. If they have difficulty swimming, you can support their torso. Some dogs begin by paddling their front legs so supporting their torso can teach them how to stay afloat and encourage using their hind legs too.
- Never leave dogs unattended. Just like humans, dogs should be monitored while swimming. If your dog is within the pool gate, be sure to keep an eye on him.
- Consider a life jacket. If you do a lot of swimming or water activities with your dog, you may want to get them a life jacket. Just like humans, dogs also can become tired and get cramps when swimming, which puts them at risk of drowning. Having a life jacket for your dog on hand will be helpful if they become tired during water activity.
- Get a kiddy pool. Some dogs are better swimmers than other dogs. Smaller dogs with short legs can have a hard time swimming but may also want to stay cool in the hot months. Getting a kiddy pool allows them to cool off safely.
- Work on training a recall. This can prevent your dog from swimming too far away from you and can help them from getting caught in a current or direct them to a shallow area. Use the recall to show the stairs or ramps so they know how to get out of the water safely.
Prepare yourself for summer with these dog safety swimming tips!