Whether it’s the pool or the beach, swimming can be a great way to have fun with your puppy. It’s easy, however, for puppy parents to underestimate the dangers their fur-babies may face in the water. Even if your pup shows great talent at swimming, make sure you keep some of the following safety tips in mind before you pack up for the beach or pool.
- Test your pup’s swimming ability. Contrary to popular belief, puppies are not born with the innate ability to swim. Some breeds, like bulldogs and pugs, are also more than happy to be on land than on water.
The best way to test your furball’s swimming skills is to introduce them to water, either via pool or the beach. You and your puppy should enter at a shallow spot of the water. Keep a close leash as your pup enters and becomes accustomed to swimming.
Most importantly, make sure your puppy is comfortable at all times. Never force them into deeper spots if they don’t want to.
- Teach your pup the swimming basics. For instance, when your fur-baby paddles his front legs, you can teach them to float by lifting their hind legs up.
If you have a pool, you can also show them how to exit the pool by gently carrying them in and out of the water. Introduce treats and other goodies as your puppy continues to learn the basics.
You can also bring in a dog trainer to help you create a positive swimming experience for your pup!
- Bring swimming essentials. Hairless breeds or breeds with light-colored fur or pink noses are susceptible to sunburns, regardless if you’re at a beach or pool. Sunscreen for pups is definitely a thing! You can sunblock for your fur-baby at pet stores or online. You should avoid sunscreens that contain zinc, which is toxic to puppies if ingested.
You should also invest in a puppy life jacket, especially if swimming in an open body of water. It helps them keep afloat and in a worse case scenario, it gives you something to grab onto, should your fur-baby get caught in a current.
Never let your puppy drink from the ocean or pool water as it make them very sick. Instead, bring fresh drinking water to keep your furry friend hydrated and happy.
- Put up a pool fence or barrier. If you’ve got a pool, chances are your puppy may be a little too curious for its own good. Your furry family member may accidentally fall in if they’re not careful.
A quick and easy solution? A fence or pool barrier can help keep your fur-baby away from the pool when you’re not around.
- Learn puppy CPR. Knowing puppy CPR can save your fur-babies life in the event of an emergency. This includes mouth-to-nose resuscitation and chest compressions.
You can check if there are any pet first aid classes available near your location or contact a dog trainer for their recommendation.
Heading off to the pool, beach, or even a lake is a great and fun way to spend time with your little furry family member. By knowing the essentials in keeping your puppy safe in the water, you and your fur-baby can continue to have fun splashing around for years to come!
For more wet season safety tips, take a quick look at other blog: Tips for Walking Your Pup in Wet Weather.