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How to teach a dog to swim?

Swimming is an instinctive action, and any dog will try to swim when in the water. But be aware that dogs with short legs, short muzzles, too heavy a chest and a light rump cannot swim or may stay in the water for a very short time.

A trainer or the owner can teach the dog to swim. It is important that the latter understands that the result requires constant and systematic work. Some owners are prepared to do this even if they realise that the animal will not be able to give them Olympic results.

Benefits of swimming for dogs

Regular swimming strengthens the dog’s bones and cardiovascular system, develops the chest and rebuilds the respiratory system, and with proper techniques, swimming involves all muscle groups, evenly loading and toning them.
Another great benefit of this activity is the development of stamina and self-confidence. The variety of time spent walking also develops ouryour pet’s intelligence and stress tolerance.

When to start training?

A dog needs to be introduced to water from an early age. But not before the puppy is 3 months old – only after all the vaccinations have been given and it is the season to go to the pond. It is the owner’s task to make the dog enjoy bathing.
Only healthy and vaccinated dogs, without skin lesions, will be trained. It is recommended that recently recovered dogs should refrain from bathing, as even the slightest cold will weaken their immunity, as well as bitches that are six weeks or more pregnant.
It is preferable that the dog trusts the trainer completely during training and understands the commands next to the Aport. This will greatly accelerate the achievement of the goal.

Preparing for training and overcoming fears

Before the training session, you need to choose a suitable location. This should be a clean and preferably uncrowded shore with a smooth landing.

It is best to start with a walk along the edge of the body of water. Observe your dog and assess his interest in the waterBasically, every dog loves the water, even one that wasn’t born a swimmer. But if a dog is brought to a body of water for the first time, there is always a small chance that he will be afraid to enter it. Many dogs that are afraid to enter the water actually want to do so. They wander along the shoreline, barely wetting their paws, barking at their owners and wagging their tails, behaving in an exciting and playful manner. If the dog shows interest, sniffs the water, tries to drink or even goes in for a short time, encourage it with a treat and show that you like it.

The next step is to enter the water near the shore and invite the dog in. If she comes, praise her again. If the dog is scared and does not dare to enter the water, encourage it by luring it with a treat or toy. Do not force the dog into the water under any circumstances. It is best if you have a dog with you who knows and likes to swim. Cheerful company and another dog’s confidence work best.

Swimming training requires attention and a wise attitude

overcoming vandens fear, if any, the dog quickly becomes comfortable in the shallows: it starts playing with its owner, fetches a ball thrown into the water, and swims to it on its own.
Many dogs that have not been taught swimming techniques do not perform them correctly, even if they have innate ability. As a rule, self-taught swimmers use only their front paws. From this, they get tired quickly and point the water sideways. The earlier the animal is taught the correct technique, the easier it will be for it to learn.

Usually the owner holds the dog under the belly with a hand and moves it along the shore, allowing it to gain confidence in the water and to understand how to use its paws correctly. The animal can then be invited to follow you deep down, or to throw an object.
It is important not to overfreeze the dog during long-term training. If a slight tremor is noticed, the session should be stopped.

After bathing

If the training has been carried out in windy weather, the dog should be wiped with a dry towel, especially the ears, as they are most vulnerable to the wind when wet. If there is a dense water body nearby

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