Whether it’s the sea, a river, lake or pond – splashing around in water is something that is irresistible to many dogs. However, while it’s all fun and games for your dog, as a responsible owner, there are a few safety precautions you should take before letting your dog swim freely.
- Make sure your dog knows how to swim. While many of our canine friends love nothing more than a paddle in the water, it isn’t the case for all dogs. Not all pooches are natural swimmers, so ensure yours knows the basics of swimming and never force them into the water.
- Check it’s safe. While the weather may be calm when you and your pooch arrive at the water, we know all too well that British weather can be unpredictable. Watch out for strong currents and rip tides. Get clued up on tide times and danger spots before visiting the lake, river or beach.
- Start your pooch off in a shallow area. If your dog is a beginner at swimming, keep him on his lead and get into the water with him. As he becomes more comfortable with swimming, you can increase the depth and distance.
- Ensure your dog has an excellent grasp of recall commands. This is especially important if your pooch is swimming in open water off their lead.
- Bring a bowl of fresh water to keep your dog hydrated. This is key when you’re at the beach, as salt-water is highly dehydrating and may cause vomiting.
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