Teaching one’s dog to swim is a doable task once done properly. Many individuals assume that all dogs were born excellent swimmers, but this is simply not true. Some dogs may need extra help to learn the art as they may have never had to swim before or they were raised by humans.
Do Not Rush The Process
Surprisingly, some dogs can fear the water. It is understandable because it can be an overwhelming experience, if they are new to it. Heavier dogs, like the bulldog for instance, can’t swim. They will sink, so it is best to not forcibly throw a dog into water, whether they are light or not. Most dogs should wear life vests when the owner is teaching them how to swim. Factors that should inhibit this should be deep waters, and if the dog has shorter legs.
The Best Environment
It depends on the dog whether or not they can handle a noisier environment. If they are properly trained, they can still probably be trained, but it is best to be away from commotion as owner and dog can concentrate. Practicing i one’s own pool is ideal, but in other instances, a calm public lake would be fine for training.
Whether the person decides to use a flotation device or not, it is imperative to keep a leash on the dog for a number of reasons. For one, safety. Anything can happen as the dog can become an avid swimmer quickly and swim out too far, especially if the dog is in a lake situation. Also, the dog can be better controlled with a leash on. This can prevent the dog from sinking also, and help the owner to guide the dog out of the water when the training session is complete.
It is also important to start the dog off in shallow water. This will let them get used to the water and it’s temperature. This should be thought of as how a human would become more comfortable in water. Stand by the dogs side, as the owner will stay on a solid surface, as they guide the dog to deeper waters. To assist with this process, a toy can be used to make them feel more comfortable and allows them to have a prize to obtain in the water. This will make it easier for the owner to control the dog. Always provide encouragement in soft tones. If the dog begins to paddle with front legs to stay afloat, they should also paddle with their back legs. If they don’t seem to be paddling with the back legs, help them. This can be done by placing an arm underneath their stomach to support them. They should eventually begin to paddle back legs, an important factor for them to swim in a forward motion.
This may take more time for one dog than another. Dogs can panic in the water, and this is where the leash comes in. Comly lead the dog back to shallow waters and try again once they are calm. This can take multiple tries but once completed, it can be a rewarding experience to share a swim with the family friend.