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Drew Orleans 03-13-2014 04:08 PM

Swimming Lessons (Age to Start?)
 
How young can a puppy be introduced to water? I know you should only let him do it for short sessions when he is young but how young can I start?

Also, I know they aren't suppose to jog or run until about 6 months or so... does the same go for swimming?

Thanks

Galathiel 03-13-2014 04:37 PM

Swimming doesn't stress the joints like pounding out in jogs/runs. At 10 weeks, I took my pup to the lake and let him decide how much or little he wanted to get in the water. To my surprise, he LOVED the water and would splash and leap through it. However, it was a few months before he actively started swimming out deeper than he could stand up. I normally only stayed about an hour letting him splash around and play with a toy in the water while my son and I waded out with him.

Drew Orleans 03-13-2014 04:40 PM

Tempted to try my 8 week old out in the pool this weekend...

Galathiel 03-13-2014 04:47 PM

You never know. However, unless you have a zero entry pool, it might be a little overwhelming as they can't control the depth of the water on their own as easily.

Drew Orleans 03-13-2014 04:48 PM

Pool I'd use is heated and has a shallow lounge area.

Thanks for the warning though.

Cheers

boomer11 03-13-2014 05:32 PM

This was my pups first time at any large body of water. He was 10 weeks. Just go in the water and call the pup to you. If he is mentally ready he'll come. If not then just try again in a few months. The Golden in the video didn't swim until after a year old. Depends on when the dog is mentally ready.



Waldi 03-13-2014 05:59 PM

when dog is ready they will swim, it may be a curse, my golden will not miss any opportunity to get wet, if it is too shallow she will lay down in the water LOL, my gs puppy started to swim at about 7 months on her own.

DJEtzel 03-13-2014 06:11 PM

My border collie puppy was swimming at 8 weeks... I supervised but never limited his swimming.

SuperG 03-13-2014 06:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Drew Orleans (Post 5193898)
How young can a puppy be introduced to water? I know you should only let him do it for short sessions when he is young but how young can I start?

Also, I know they aren't suppose to jog or run until about 6 months or so... does the same go for swimming?

Thanks

My experiences.....my opinions....

The first GSD pup I had, I blew it big time....I spent a lot of time at the lake, skiing the course....figured the pup could hang out on the platform...bad decision...pup thought she could walk on water....stepped right off the platform and down she went...I was a millisecond away from going in after her but up she pops...needless to say, it took months to get her somewhat comfortable with swimming but never became what it could have been due to my screw up with her indoctrination.

My current shep frigging loves the water and swimming....I learned from my mistake. Bought one of those kiddy pools they sell at Home Depot, Menards, Toy R Us..etc...they are dirt cheap. After a few sessions with lawn sprinklers...which all my sheps have completely loved, terrorized and destroyed....I put the hose in the pool, which the dog was fascinated with of course and filled the kiddy pool up...threw in a few of her toys and voila'....I now have a dog named Jacques Cousteau. First time to the lake, no aversions whatsoever..started slow..in the shallows mainly and having her fetch my sandals ( they float )..soon enough she is acting like a lab...loving the water. Oh, one thing some of my friends find odd about Kaia is she will put her head underwater to retrieve items and it is a first for me...never had a dog do that before.

Anyway, I put a premium on a dog being comfortable around water since I spend a lot of time enjoying lakes and rivers and want my pooch there with me...and comfortable. I also put a big emphasis on indoctrinations for pups as I have learned my lessons. So, I don't believe there is a time which is better than any other time to get them swimming, I just suggest the process is one which does not create any undue stress on the pup....letting them test the waters on their own without being goaded would be my approach. Of course as their protector, one is always thinking one step ahead of the pup to prevent any bad experiences....except me the first time around.

Nothing like a GSD that LOVES swimming.

SuperG

sourdough44 03-13-2014 07:25 PM

Ideally you want a shallow entry to warmer water. Try to go in yourself too. You don't need or want deep water, a shallow beach is ideal. With the right conditions almost any age can be O.K., full fledged swimming can be save for later.


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