Not All Dogs Can Swim

Dogs are born with the instincts to bark and play, but what about swimming? The term “doggie paddle” would lead one to believe that swimming is another inherent trait, however, some breeds of dogs are better swimmers than others, and some dogs just can’t swim at all.

Water Spaniels, Golden Retrievers, Irish Setters, and a number of other breeds have been bred to be great swimmers. These dogs usually have strong limbs and longer bodies. Some dogs are not as good at swimming. Typically they fall into the following categories.

Top Heavy Dogs
Oftentimes these dogs just don’t have the proper strength needed to keep them afloat. They are top heavy with short hindquarters. Some examples of this type of dog are boxers, dachshunds, pugs, and bulldogs.

Brachycephalic Dogs
These dogs are limited by the shape of their face and the ability to breathe. Brachycephalic dogs (dogs with flat faces) are usually the same dogs that have short, stout legs. The facial structures of these dogs make it difficult for them to pant effectively, which is extremely important in a highly aerobic exercise like swimming. Their short muzzle, compact skull, and compressed upper respiratory system just aren’t compatible with swimming.

Panicky Dogs
It may not always be easy to spot a dog that won’t be able to swim. This is because temperament plays a huge factor in their ability to swim. Dogs that have a panicky nature usually have the most problems. How does your dog react to rain? If this small amount of water is bothersome, it is very possible that being thrust into a pool or lake will result in a negative reaction. Frightened dogs will scratch and claw in search of safety. This will lead to quicker fatigue and possibly even drowning.

Older Dogs
As dogs age they lose muscle strength and flexibility – two very important qualities of a good swimmer. This can be very depressing for dogs that have loved to swim throughout their life. Luckily there is a solution for all dogs mentioned here………..USE A LIFE JACKET!!!!

It is our mission and top priority to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for all the dogs staying with us. In some cases we may determine that certain dogs are not suitable to go in the pool either for their safety/comfort or that of our staff. If pool activity is deemed favorable, it is our policy that each dog be outfitted with a life jacket. We have various sizes of life vests available for our “swimmers”. You may also provide us with your own. For those dogs whose owners do not have a life vest, we will charge an additional $5.00 to provide one. This is a flat fee for the entirety of the current reservation.

By signing below, owner acknowledges that he/she has read this document in full and agrees to the terms within. Furthermore, he/she holds harmless Dawg Paradise and their staff for any injury or medically related incident that may occur as a result of his/her dog(s) participation in pool activity provided all reasonable precautions have been taken to prevent said incident.

*All forms are for those with upcoming reservations only.