Whether you have a swimming pool or enjoy visiting the lake or ocean, teaching your dog to swim can serve many purposes. Swimming is a great way to beat the heat and still get exercise. Also, should your dog ever accidentally fall in, if he’s already accustomed to the water, he’ll be less likely to panic.
When first introducing your dog to water, take it slow. If you can walk in the water with him, that’s going to be the easiest way to get him in. Use treats or toys to encourage and reward your dog through the process. Take the time to introduce him to water properly as opposed to simply “tossing him in”. We want your dog to enjoy swimming.
It’s also important to never leave your dog unattended around water. Even excellent swimmers can get hurt or injured by falling in. Remember to pay attention to when your dog is getting tired. Some dogs will push themselves past their limits, so take frequent breaks between swim sessions.
If you’ll be swimming in large bodies of water, it’s a good idea to invest in a dog life jacket. Use treats to make a positive association with the life jacket and work to get your dog comfortable wearing it in and out of the water.
It’s also a good idea to avoid letting your dog drink from pools or the ocean. Chemicals and salt can make your dog sick!
Most importantly, enjoy swimming with your best bud!
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