Summertime means fun in the sun – for you and your pup! Whether you live near a lake or the ocean, or love to take your pup in the pool – these three tips will help keep your dog safe all summer long!
1. Get the right equipment
No matter how seasoned a swimmer your dog is, purchasing a lifejacket could be one of the best things you do!
Just like humans, dogs can tire in the water. If they are in wild water sources like a lake or ocean, there can be strong undercurrents or rip currents which can cause fatigue sooner.
A quality life jacket will keep their head above water and help ease their fatigue.
It’s recommended that all dogs around water sources wear a life jacket. Even if you don’t intend on letting them swim. If you are spending the day by the lake or out on a boat or around your pool, make sure to bring a life jacket.
2. Check the water source
Before you let your dog into any water source, check the condition of the water and the temperature:
- Is it clear of algae and film?
- Is there a tint of color that shouldn’t be there?
- How cold or warm is the water?
- Will your pup be comfortable in the water?
Only allow your pup into water that you are confident is both clean and non-toxic.
You should make sure that the water temperature isn’t too cold for your dog – it’s advised that anything under 50 Fahrenheit, with exposure of more than a few minutes, is too cold for dogs.
Once your dog has exited the water source, you should rinse them down with fresh tap water to remove any salt. Make sure to also give them a thorough drying if they are a long-haired breed.
Be sure to dry their ears and paws too and make a quick check to ensure the water hasn’t reacted to your dog’s skin (e.g. Chlorine burns).
3. Socializing a Dog with Water
Just like any new experience, you should make sure your dog is happy and comfortable.
Introducing your dog to a lake, or open body of water, is very simple – don’t focus on the water.
Start by throwing some treats around the entrance to the water body while giving plenty of praise and encouragement.
Each time, throw the treats closer and closer to the body of water until you find that your dog’s paws gently touch the water.
Make sure to continue with plenty of praise and rewards and one day your dog should enjoy the water. However, some dogs do not like water – and that is OK! Do not force a pup to enter the water at any time.
Looking for ways to let your pup cool off this summer without the water? Consider daycare at Dogtopia where our temperature-controlled playrooms are supervised by certified Canine Coaches and filled with fun all day long! Find a location near you.