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Comment Contest: How Safe Is Your Dog in Water?

Summer is the perfect time to remind your dog about swimming safety.By Natalie Lester, PetSafe Brand Marketing Specialist

Emma and Natalie love swimming together. Does your dog like the water?

You may remember (how could you forget?) that I adopted a sweet puppy just a few short months ago, but it feels like we have been together forever. Granted, we are still working on making good decisions, but through it all we have a great time (yes, even when she potties in the wrong spot and I have to clean it up).

We’ve made several visits to the PetSafe dog parks in Knoxville, and traveled a few weekends to visit friends and family. Even though we have been able to make so many sweet, fun memories together, Emma has already picked her favorite activity - she loves to swim! If your dog loves to swim, tell me about it in the comment section below to be entered to win one of our Pogo Plush Splash toys.

I gave her a bath only a few days after I got her, and even then it was so apparent how much she loved the water. Sometimes, if I can’t find her in my house, all I have to do is check the tub. She camps out there just waiting for a bath in her "swimming pool." Since the weather has heated up (to well above both of our boiling points), I have taken her to visit family and friends who have pools to cool us off.

I was interested to see how she would react to such a big “bath tub,” but my guess was that she would immediately be in love. I could not have been more right. If there is a pool in sight, I can almost guarantee my dog will be perched on the first step waiting for the perfect moment to jump in for a quick swim.

Luckily, Emma has a natural ability in the water, but there are several swimming safety tips we practice to be sure she stays safe. If your dog has the chance to go for a dip this summer, you will want to be sure to put this advice to good use. After all, everyone is looking for a chance to escape the heat!

1. Learn the doggie paddle. Even if you pet loves the bath like Emma, you still want to be careful to monitor him when he is in the pool. Never force him in the water if he isn’t interested, and be sure you are within an arm’s reach in case he gets tired or can’t find the steps. Every pool is different, so I always make sure I’m in the water before Emma gets in so I can help her find her way out. You never want to leave your pet around the pool unsupervised, especially if they love the water!

2. Float the boat. Some dogs, especially bulldogs, pugs, and other brachy breeds, are not designed for the water and may have trouble maneuvering in the water. Older dogs may also tire easy. Robin’s dog, Buckley, frequently visits the lake and she wears a Pet Saver Life Jacket. I actually ordered Emma a dog life jacket, too, because a little extra protection never hurt anyone. Though you’ll still want to be close by, your pet will be safer in the water with a flotation device.

3. Rinse him off. I’m sure you remember how sticky and dry your hair and skin feel after you get out of the pool. Your dog feels the same way. Be sure to give him a bath as soon as possible to avoid discomfort. You also want to remove all the chemicals from his skin so he doesn’t ingest them when grooming. To that point, you should also keep your pet from drinking pool water.

Have you taken your pet to the pool yet? Do you have any other swimming safety tips? What other ways are you staying cool this summer?


ABOUT NATALIE As the PetSafe Brand Marketing Specialist, Natalie manages The Paw Print blog and generates other brand related content including public relations and promotions. Before PetSafe, Natalie worked in the local media covering politics, education, and religion. Natalie’s puppy, Emma, spends almost as much time in the office as she does.

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I recently adopted a new puppy as well, shes a 9 week old daschund pitbull mix and the first time i took her to the beach she walked right in and a wave smacked her in the face! She started swimming right away with me but i always keep my hands under her belly to make sure i can scoop her up if necessary. My older dog a 5 year old pitbull liked the water but no so much as he would swim. Today i went to the beach with a 50 ft remmington dog leash and a water toy, it was like magic he ran into the water afterthat toy like a lab after a duck! I figured if he was to get tired i could get to him right away because hes attatched to me with the leash and he can only go so far. Im purchasing a doggy life jacket now that he likes to swim for extra protection. When the little one gets bigger ill do the same shedoesnt go deep. I feel like its betterto havedogs on leashes because you can contain them if necessary or get quick access in am emergency at the beach, 50 ft is morethen enough for any dog to roam around!

We adopted Artie a golden retriever mix a few months ago who loves water. I got him a life jacket for the lake. We showed him how to get up the ladder and out of our friend’s in-ground pool. Not all dogs know how to get out of a pool. We have a wading pool and because he is 80 lbs there is no danger of him drowning in it. We are playing in the water and sprinkler to stay cool this summer and we walk in the evening on the dead grass at the local park. We don’t take long walks but Artie needs exercise.

I also make my dog frozen plain Greek yogurt with peanut butter and banana for a special treat. Artie loves it and it is good for him too.

Layla is afraid of the water, but she loves toys. She’s a rescue and we are trying to teach her that she can have fun in the water. We took her to the beach, but she ran away from the water as the waves hit the sand.

It’s so great to hear all three of your stories. Our random winner selection choose response 3, so Lauren please email me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) to claim your prize. Thank you ladies for sharing! We hope you and your pups enjoy the water this summer.

Lady is a Chocolate Labrador Retriever, so she loves to swim and can swim forever. I take her lakes here in northern Vermont. But I also like to take her for canoe rides. She loves it and is calm when aboard. But as a precaution I alway make her wear her harness. That way when she swims alongside and wants to come back in or I want her back in I can assist her climbing over the gunwale by hoisting the top of her harness like a suitcase handle. She might be too large (65#) for some but I can handle it and she helps.

Checking water is very important. Bathing a dog needs to be given more emphasis. This is because of the fact that if you are careless in bathing, the animal may end up having some infections.  For example, if you don’t close the ears with large cotton ball, the water may enter into ear canals and may cause some ear infections with signs like constant discharge from the ears and shaking of head.

Our Bulldog loves water.  We have a wading pool for him to keep him cool.

We also take Gordo to Dog Beach, Ocean Beach in San Diego, CA and it is always the highlight of the summer for him.

[...] Emma’s short life, she has explored and discovered many things she loves – like swimming! However, there have also been a few situations where she isn’t comfortable and is obviously [...]

Not really sure how safe a dog can be underwater. I am not even brave enough just splashing water on my cat. However, Ii have one cat that does not react too much with water except shrugging it off.

Yes my dog also loves swimming too. I also enjoy watching him to swim, but not always. Someday I had to dry him over and over. Is there any solution for this?

I have a large playground, and a pond inside it. I use a PIF-300 wireless dog fence. I was thinking to switch to in-ground solution. But is there any solution so that I can restrict my pond too. I meant a general boundary for my dog. And then inside the boundary little places like garden, pond should be restricted too. Please suggest.


Hi Manas,

My dog loves swimming in our pond, too! I bought him a small plastic doggie pool to try to keep him away from the pond, but he still prefers the muddy pond to a clean pool. Maybe your dog would like this option better than mine did!

An in-ground fence is a great option for custom boundaries. You can let your dog out in the yard while keeping him away from your pond, garden, and playground.

Our Customer Care team would be happy to help you choose the right in-ground fence. Give us a call at 1-866-738-4379.

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