12 Swimming Safety Tips for Your Dog

Dachshund lifeguard

Dogs are playful, active creatures who like to play and engage in various activities, and what better summertime activity than swimming? Dogs love to swim, and while it can be a great sport, swimming can also be risky if safety precautions aren’t taken, so it’s crucial to ensure they do it properly.

And for your help, we have compiled a list of 12 swimming safety tips for your dog to help you keep them safe while they’re enjoying the water.

Some Critical Factors To Consider

Before jumping to safety tips, here are some essential factors to consider to ensure extra safety for your dogs.

Don’t Assume All Dogs Can Swim

Many people believe that all dogs have an inherent ability to swim. That is untrue. Most dogs will try to do a doggy paddle if they find themselves in the water, but not all dogs are strong swimmers or can stay afloat.

Your dog’s ability to swim depends on its body type. Breeds like Standard Poodle, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, English Setter, Irish Water Spaniel, Portuguese Water Dog, and Labrador Retriever are great swimmers. On the other hand, breeds with large chests and short legs, like the Bulldog, struggle to keep afloat.

Therefore, bear those things in mind when you train your dog to swim. Some dogs may require a life jacket to stay afloat because they weren’t all designed for swimming.

When Teaching Your Dog To Swim, Go Slowly

When first introduced to the water, many dogs are apprehensive, so they go slowly to prevent overwhelming them. Not all dogs will immediately jump in; you must persuade them.

Bring your dog into the shallow water with you.

As he follows you in, compliment him and keep telling him to stick with you. You can try luring your dog further into the water with one of his favorite toys.

Accidents Can Happen

The first important thing for Pet owners is to try to safely remove their animals from the water if they are in danger of drowning. While attempting to save a dog or cat who is drowning, it’s critical to look for yourself.

Instead of jumping into the water to try to save the animal, it is advised to toss a rope or a life preserver or try to hook the animal’s collar and carefully pull it out of the water.

After saving them from drowning, dry them and give them warmth as soon as possible to avoid hypothermia.

After that, must first clear the pet’s airway of any water. You can turn small dogs and puppies upside down to let the water drain from their lungs. You should lay larger dogs on their side with the upper body elevated to allow the water to escape from the nose and mouth.

Observe the pulse. Start artificial respiration immediately if your pet’s heart is beating, but it may not breathe. To open the airway, gently close the animal’s mouth and lengthen its neck.

Exhale until you watch your pet’s chest rise while covering their nose with your mouth. Continue until the animal can breathe on its own, then take it to the vet.

12 Swimming Safety Tips For Your Dog

1. Never Leave Your Dog Unattended Near Water

Dogs are generally attracted to water and love to play in it. However, it’s essential to never leave your dog unattended near water, as they can quickly get into trouble.

Dogs can drown in just a few inches of water, so it’s essential to always keep an eye on them when they’re near pools, lakes, or even bathtubs.

If you’re going to be away from your dog for more than a few minutes, it’s best to put them in a safe place where they can’t access water. These precautions can help prevent a tragedy and keep your furry friend safe.

2. Make Sure Your Dog Is Wearing A Life Jacket or Vest That Is Appropriate For Its Size And Breed.

Keeping your dog safe while enjoying activities on or near the water is essential. Ensure your dog wears a life jacket or vest appropriate for its size and breed.

Certain breeds are more at risk than others. Smaller dogs, such as cavapoo haircuts, are particularly vulnerable to the cold and can quickly tire when swimming.

As a result, it is essential to ensure that your cavapoo is wearing a life jacket or vest appropriate for its size and breed.

Dogs have different body shapes and sizes, so it’s essential to find a life jacket that will allow your dog to move freely and not restrict its movement. In addition, make sure the life jacket is adequately secured, so it doesn’t come off in the water.

And always supervise your dog while it’s near the water. These precautions can help ensure your dog has a safe and enjoyable time swimming or boating.

3. Be Aware of Potential Hazards In The Water, Such As Sharp Rocks or Debris

Swimming is a great way to stay cool in the summer heat, but it’s essential to be aware of potential hazards in the water. Sharp rocks or debris can cause cuts and scrapes, and high water flow areas can create dangerous currents.

It’s always a good idea to check the depth of the water before diving your dog in and be aware of your surroundings while swimming with your dog. Take simple precautions to enjoy a safe and fun summer swim season.

4. Do Not Allow Your Dog To Swim In Areas Where There Is Heavy Boat Traffic

Dogs are known for their love of swimming, but it’s essential to be aware of the dangers of letting them swim in areas with heavy boat traffic.

The propellers on boats can cause severe injuries to dogs, and the noise from the engines can startle them and cause them to panic. In addition, boats create waves that can knock dogs off their feet and sweep them away from shore.

For these reasons, it’s best to avoid letting your dog swim in areas with heavy boat traffic. If you must let your dog swim in such an area, keep a close eye on them and be ready to call for help if they get into trouble.

5. Don’t Let Your Dog Drink Ocean Water

Your dog may become quite ill if they drink from the ocean. The osmotic impact of salt water draws fluids into your dog’s intestines. It can result in vomiting and diarrhea (often referred to as “beach diarrhea”), both of which can induce dehydration.

Compared to regular diarrhea, beach diarrhea is severe, develops quickly, and rapidly dehydrates dogs. Dogs who drink enough salt water may get serious kidney damage that is highly dangerous.

When taking your dog swimming, make sure you have enough fresh water on hand to minimize the chance of them getting sick. If you notice your dog starting to drink from the water, keep a keen eye on them and call them over if you see them drinking from the ocean.

6. Do Not Throw Sticks or Toys Into The Water

It may seem harmless fun to throw a stick or toy into the water for your dog to fetch, but it can actually be very dangerous. If the stick or toy gets stuck underwater, your dog may be unable to get back to the surface.

It can lead to drowning, even in shallow water, or other injuries. For this reason, avoiding throwing sticks or toys into the water for your dog to fetch is best. If you want your dog to enjoy a swim, take them to a local dog beach where they can safely splash around in the waves.

7. If They Become Fatigued, Get Them Out Immediately

Help your dog out of the water as soon as possible if they fatigue while swimming. Your first concern should be their safety, so ensure they have enough time to relax and recover before they resume their water play.

8. Avoid Bodies of Water That Are Known To Have Harmful Bacteria or Pollutants

Although swimming in a pool is a great way to stay cool in the summer, it’s essential to be aware of the potential health risks. Pools can be a breeding ground for bacteria, and if they’re not properly maintained, they can pose a severe health hazard.

The same is true for lakes and rivers. Although they may look clean, they can contain harmful bacteria that can cause illness.

If you’re planning to take your dog swimming in any body of water, be sure to check for warnings about bacteria or other pollutants. Taking simple precautions allows you to enjoy the summer without risking your health.

9. Strong Currents Are Dangerous

Do not allow your dog to swim in any moving water. Your dog is in grave danger from waves and strong currents. It is better to avoid moving water and stick to shallow pools, lakes, and ponds.

10. Rinse Your Dog Off With Fresh Water

It is essential to rinse your dog with fresh water after they have been swimming in salt water or chlorinated water to remove any irritants from its fur and skin.

11. Have A Plan In Place

Make sure you remember where your dog was last seen in case they get lost while swimming, and get in touch with your neighborhood vet clinic and animal shelter as soon as possible.

12. Never Force Your Dog To Swim

If they seem unwilling, some dogs do not enjoy it and prefer to stay on dry land! Respect their wishes and find another activity to enjoy together instead.


Following these 12 swimming safety tips, you can help ensure that your dog has a fun, safe experience every time they take a dip!


How can I keep my dog safe around the pool?

Pool safety for dogs is essential. Dogs can quickly become distracted by the pool and drown if not supervised. Here are some tips to keep your dog safe around the pool:

  • Make sure your pool is properly fenced. A pool fence is the best way to keep your dog safe and secure. Ensure the fence is at least 3 feet high and properly constructed, with a tight mesh that won’t let your dog through.
  • Never leave a dog unattended in the pool.
  • Always keep a close eye on your dog and take appropriate action if they are distracted or distressed.
  • Keep your dog on a leash when in the pool area. A leash keeps your dog close to you and within your control. If your dog is unruly and begins to wander off, be sure to call your dog back using a loud voice.

Is Swimming Stressful For Dogs?

The short answer is no; swimming is not stressful for dogs. Swimming is a great way to get your dog to exercise, and it is also a great way to bond with your dog. But it is essential to follow safety measures to avoid any unlikable situation.

Why Dogs Should Not Swim In Pools?

Dogs should not swim in pools because of the dangers that can come with them. Swimming with a dog can be risky because they can get swept away in the current or pulled under by the pool’s water.

If a dog gets into the pool and cannot get out, it can drown. Additionally, dogs can get sick from swimming in pools and contract parasites from the water.

How Can I Keep My Dog Safe Under Water?

There are a few things you can do to keep your dog safe while in the water:

  1. Make sure your dog is properly fitted with a life jacket.
  2. Make sure your dog is supervised correctly while in the water. If your dog is not supervised correctly, it could get into trouble or drown. Another thing you can do is to make sure that the area where they are playing is safe and free from rocks or other objects that could injure them.
  3. Be sure to keep an eye on your dog to avoid any uncertain situations.

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