Teaching Your Dog To Swim

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How To Teach Your Dog To Swim

Swimming is not something dogs are born with, even though most dogs have the reflex to use their paws to help themselves in the water. This is learned gradually. Your support, understanding and encouragement will make this learning process easier.

As with humans, some dogs are better swimmers than others. They are better able to evolve in this element that is water and to move in it. Regardless of their predispositions, all dogs can learn to swim. All you have to do is to accompany them during this learning process and to make sure that it is gradual and always in a good mood. How do you teach your dog to swim? Our few tips will help you to do so.

    Are dogs born swimmers?

    Dogs are not born with the innate ability to swim. Although some are much more comfortable in the water and have more ease learning to swim than others, they all have to go through the first stages of learning to swim. Simply put, some dogs learn to swim faster than others.

    The dogs' relationship to water is not the same as ours. Neither is their perception of depth. You must give your four-legged friend plenty of time to get used to this element.

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    Where to teach him to swim?

    Of course, it would be counterproductive and even dangerous to choose a white water site for your dog's first contact with water. The current could be too strong for the animal, or even traumatize him and make this experience negative for your dog.

    Instead, it is best to choose a calm river, a small lake or a shallow dog pool. Make sure that the area is not off-limits to dogs beforehand.

    How to get him used to the water?

    Once you've chosen the ideal place to start learning to swim, you'll have to gradually get your dog used to contact with water.

    The most important thing is to associate this experience with a positive event in your dog's mind. To do this, you will need to set an example by going into the water (just soak his feet) and encouraging him to join you. Give him time to dip his paws in the water, to become familiar with the element. After a few minutes, you can motivate them by using a ball or a floating toy. Throw the object a few centimetres away from him to encourage him to join it and catch it. Don't throw it too far to discourage him.

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    Guide him in the water

    Gradually move forward in the water to reach a slightly deeper level, just enough so that the dog has no more feet. Some dogs will instinctively start moving their feet to float. Others will struggle, which can quickly tire them out and cause them to swallow water. If yours has difficulty floating, don't hesitate to help him by carrying him: one hand under the chest and the other under the abdomen. Observe their progress and let go for a few moments if you see them begin to float and swim on their own.

    Read also : Flatulence in Dogs : How to Reduce Flatulence in Dogs.

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