June 13, 2012
Fun in the sun and beating the heat often means playing in water – for both humans and their dogs. Whether it be you own pool, the ocean, or lake you’ll want to remind yourself of steps you can take to ensure it’s a fun – safe – and rewarding experience for all.
As an inquisitive canine who understands playing it safe around bodies of water, I thought it’d be a good time to send out a few reminders for other pooches and their parents about water safety:
- If your dog is intending to go for a swim, make sure he or she knows how. Not all dogs can, especially the brachycephalic (short-snout) breeds.
- If your dog is used to swimming in one location or type of water, it’s still a good idea to introduce them to new places as if you were teaching them for the first time.
- Be aware of water conditions, including chlorine levels, temperature, if there’s a current, or other factor dogs might not be the best judge of. If possible, take a dip first to test the waters. (No pun intended).
- Rinse your dog off afterwards, no matter the water condition. Dogs tend to tolerate a lot, so best to take the time to rinse – including wiping down ears and other areas skin might be more sensitive. It’s also a good time to check for ticks!
- If your dog knows how to swim, then you the owner should know how to swim too. If something should happen, you will need to help while wanting to avoid two bad situations.
- Teach your dog where and how to get in and OUT of the water. Make sure they have easy access to an escape route, especially when exiting a pool or coming onto a boat.
- For dogs learning how to swim, consider using a life-vest to help them stay afloat and get comfortable in the water. Keep in mind it’s always important to gauge you dog’s comfort level and to use caution by not pushing them beyond their threshold. Gone are the old days of being thrown into the deep end to learn to swim.
No matter where the summer takes you, we wish you continued fun-in-the-sun, and paw-raising times together. Hmmm, I know there’s Canine Freestyle, I wonder if there’s Canine Synchronized Swimming? That might be fun!