Are you looking forward to swimming and boating this summer? If so, you may want to bring your dog along for fun summer outings at a pool or lake. When swimming with dogs, you’ll want to be sure to always put Fido’s safety first. In this article, a local Fort Collins, CO vet offers some great advice on swimming safely with dogs.
While some dogs take to water like furry, four-legged ducks, others need to be taught how to swim. Never, ever, put your dog into water with the expectation that he will figure it out. Fido may be so frightened by the experience that he develops a lifelong fear of water. Instead, get into the water with your pup, and hold him gently. It may take a few attempts for him to figure out how to use all four legs. Reward him with treats and praise, so he feels positive about the experience.
The first rule of doggy pool safety is to show Fido where the stairs are. This is crucial, because if he falls in, he’ll be able to get back out again if he knows where the exit is. Don’t just show him once: test him a few times. It may not be a bad idea to put a visual marker near the stairs, such as a potted tree or patio set, to mark the exit. Another thing to be careful of is your pool covering. You don’t want Fido to hop onto a pool cover, thinking it’s a solid surface! Therefore, adding a fence around your pool is always a good idea. If you have a senior dog, a weak pup, a puppy, or a pooch with poor vision, a fence is recommended.
Before taking Fido to the lake, make sure your furry pal knows and obeys the five basic commands, which are Sit, Stay, Come, Heel, and Lay Down. This is crucial because it can keep him from jumping off a dock, or wandering too close to a dangerous area. Always bring a doggy life jacket along for your pooch, and never let him off-leash near the water unattended.
Do you have any questions about your dog’s health or care? We are here to help! Reach out to us, your local Fort Collins, CO vet clinic, for all your pet’s veterinary care needs.