It is believed that all dogs are excellent swimmers, they love water and are happy to dive into any body of water. This is just not the case: some dogs not only flatly refuse to go into the pool, but, it seems, do not know how to stay on the water at all. Read more interesting articles on the website.
How to teach a dog to swim?
- Be patient when starting your studies. Getting a dog acquainted with water is a long process that should not be accelerated. Moreover, you should not rush if there is a bad experience, after which the dog has a fear of water.
- They do not start classes immediately in the water. First, the dog is introduced to the reservoir in which it is planned to conduct lessons. Unobtrusive walks are what you need. It is important that the animal gets used to the place.
- At the second stage of training, the owner enters the water and invites the dog to join. This is where problems most often begin: not all animals are ready to wet their paws. In this case, you can use your favorite rubber toys, gently call your pet.
- You can invite a familiar dog who loves to swim for a walk. Joint games will help to overcome fear: the pet will not even notice how it got into the water.
- The first time you need to hold the dog, help her stay on the water. Even if she is ready to sail on her own.
- It is important to keep track of how far the dog swims and how long it is in the water. Do not let your pet swim for a long time, especially at first. An animal cannot always calculate its own strength.
- Don’t forget about positive reinforcement. Praise your pet every time he decides to go into the water or is simply interested in it, standing on the shore.
What to look for:
- Only healthy vaccinated puppies older than 3 months can be taught to water.
- Better to avoid bodies of water with slippery shores, fast currents and difficult access to the water.
- Remember that older animals and pregnant dogs get tired sooner.
- Do not let your pet swim with a collar or leash. This is unsafe: the pet can catch on to something, especially if the reservoir is wild, and get injured.
- Do not yell at the dog, do not use physical force or drag it into the water forcibly. The owner’s job is to instill a love of swimming, not aggravate the pet’s fears.
- It is difficult for a person to assess the degree of dog fatigue. But, if the pet is breathing heavily, does not float well in the water, place it in shallow water or even get out of the water.
- Swimming lessons, especially at the initial stage, should not take more than 5-10 minutes a day.
- For breeds who, as a rule, do not enjoy swimming, it is recommended to purchase a special vest. But don’t put it on right away and make your dog swim. First, you need to teach the animal to wear a vest, and only then gently introduce it to the reservoir.