Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise your dog can participate in, as it has low impact on joints while still having the benefits of aerobic exercise. Some dog sports like dock diving harness certain dogs' love of water and retrieving to create very happy, tired dogs.
Swimming is perfect for the older dog or one that is recovering from surgery or has painful joints. Working with your dog on swimming is best done under the supervision of a canine hydrotherapist that can help build up your dog’s stamina slowly and knows what type of swimming is best for your dog’s specific needs.
Tips for Swimming Dogs
- If your dog is hesitant to go into the water, then going in yourself or encouraging your dog to fetch his favorite toy from the water is a good way to get him swimming.
- You might have to hold your dog in the water first so that he feels confident, then you can move on to encouraging him to swim on his own.
- Dogs with deep chests such as boxers or short nosed dogs might have difficulty staying afloat and should only swim while wearing a life jacket to support them in the water.
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