Answering an often-asked question, “can dogs swim in pools?”
Over the past decade, the phenomenal growth of the pet industry has clearly demonstrated that humans love their furry companions. Statistics show that more than half of millennial pet owners buy their pets gifts at least once a month!
For future homeowners, nearly 42% admitted that their pets, or the desire to have a pet, is a key factor in their decision to buy a house.
If your current or future home includes a swimming pool, how can we keep Fluffy happy and our pool in pristine condition? Can dogs swim in pools?
Sharing Your Pool with Your Dog
Most dogs enjoy spending time in the water. Whether it’s fetching a stick or chasing away an unwelcome duck, your canine will likely have a great time in any body of water, including your swimming pool.
Your dog may love swimming, and there are health benefits afforded to dogs that swim. Some of these benefits include:
- loosening of tight muscles.
- an increase in circulation, endurance, flexibility, range of motion, balance, coordination, and muscle strength.
- a decrease in swelling.
- building confidence.
- an opportunity to bond with humans.
Introducing your New Puppy to your Pool
It’s a misconception that all dogs have natural swimming abilities. If your pup is hesitant to get in the water, gentle guidance will lead him to confidence in the pool. If your dog doesn’t jump right into your pool, that isn’t necessarily a sign that he will never enjoy swimming. He may just have to be taught how to swim! If you’re interested in teaching your pet to swim, here are some tips on how to get started.
Pools and Pet Safety
Teaching your dog to swim is also one step you can perform to ensure your pool is a safe environment for your pet. Teaching him how to exit the pool is of utmost importance. Knowing how to safely exit will help eliminate panic in case of accidental entry. The AKC suggests putting him in the pool from different points, then guiding him toward the exit.
Always supervise your dog, even if they have strong swimming ability. Emergencies can arise, and you will want to be present if your pet needs your assistance.
You can prevent accidental splash sessions by utilizing safety pool covers and pool fences. Pool covers make your backyard pool safer for your pets by preventing entry to the water. Pool fences either block access to the perimeter of the pool, or the section of the yard in which the pool is located.
You may choose to utilize pool alarms and pet safety collars that respond to any pool activity or water submersion.
Chlorine and other chemicals in your pool, if kept at correct levels, are unlikely to harm your dog. In fact, the experts at petMD share that your pool is a safer option than swimming in a river or lake, which can lead to exposure to unknown microorganisms. Just make sure that your pool cleaning supplies, such as chlorine tabs and shock, are stored safely away from your dog.
Maintaining Pool Hygiene
If you decide to let your pet swim in your pool, make sure you’re maintaining it properly. Your pool may require additional measures to ensure it remains in good health.
If your pup has long hair or sheds a lot, give him adequate brushing before allowing him in your pool, to minimize the amount of hair that ends up in your pool filter. If your dog swims regularly, clean your filter frequently, to ensure your pool pump continues working at the optimum level.
Keeping your dog’s nails trimmed can also reduce the chance of damage to not only pool equipment, but other swimmers. It is not recommended to allow a dog in a vinyl pool, since his nails can cause damage.
Dogs can also transfer debris like dirt and pollen, into your pool. However, many pool experts suggest that one dog in a swimming pool has the same effect on pool water as three humans.
Just like sharing treats or going on a hike together, spending time with your dog in the pool can create lots of laughter and lasting memories for many years to come. With patience and proper attention, the answer to “can dogs swim in pools” is YES!