Teaching a Dog To Swim - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
Knighted Member
 
fuzzybunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 2,507
Teaching a Dog To Swim

My girl, Bunny, is 5.5 years old. I'm going to a lake this weekend with a friend and her little dog. Bunny will go in the water up to the top of her legs but is afraid to go in an further and swim. I'd love to teach her how to swim but I'm not sure how. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Jazz, Shiloh Shepherd, 5 yrs old, CGC HIC
Bunny, GSD X, 7.5 years old
fuzzybunny is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 03:40 PM
No Stinkin' Leashes Moderator
 
Cassidy's Mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 31,980
Is there a toy she loves? You could try tossing the toy out just far enough that she has to swim to get it. That's what worked to get Dena swimming. We started with the tennis ball thrown close, into shallow water, and then gradually a foot or two further each time. Finally, she had to swim a couple of strokes to reach it and then after that there was no stopping her! She'd been around water for a few months before we were able to get her to swim, and she loved it but would only wade in up to her belly until that point, so be patient and persistent. Some dogs just don't love water, but if she's going in on her own I bet you can get her to swim.

Keefer followed Dena right out the first time he was in water deep enough to swim in. Halo splashed around her first time near water, and the second time we were at the ocean. She would jump away from the waves because she hadn't seen them before, but I think the very next time we took her swimming she followed Keefer in, so we really didn't have to encourage either of them to do it, they just did.

Are Bunny's doggy friends swimmers? Sometimes just being around other dogs who are swimming will get a dog to give it a try. My dogs have taught other dogs to swim.

-Debbie-
Cava 1/6/18
Keefer 8/25/05-4/24/19 ~ The sweetest boy
Halo 11/9/08-6/17/18 ~ You left pawprints on our hearts
Dena 9/12/04-10/4/08 ~ Forever would have been too short
Cassidy 6/8/00-10/4/04
Cassidy's Mom is offline  
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
Knighted Member
 
fuzzybunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 2,507
Thanks for the reply. She's not really big on toys but I'll definitely buy a new one and try to entice her with it. My friend's dog is a swimmer so maybe that'll help. I plan on going in to. I'm hoping it's a gradual decline because that might help.

Jazz, Shiloh Shepherd, 5 yrs old, CGC HIC
Bunny, GSD X, 7.5 years old
fuzzybunny is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 05:36 PM
Member
 
jimj's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 91
Any issues with water in the ears? Do you have to do anything special with 'em after swimming?
jimj is offline  
post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 05:38 PM
Crowned Member
 
Shade's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 8,694
I taught both Alex and Jazzy to swim the same way, I used a very long leash and went into the water and waited. If they didn't move I gently tugged the leash and they would follow me in, thankfully neither was very afraid of the water so it wasn't hard

Alex loved the water and would swim at any chance, Jazzy only goes in the water if I'm in the water as well

Shanna

My Pack:

Jasmine - Female Miniature Poodle - born Aug 15, 2010
Loker Delgado Von Stalworth - Male GSD - born Jan 26, 2012
Koda & Zazu - 7 year old male cats
Alex - Male Cocker Spaniel (rescue) - RIP Cuddlebug 2007-2010
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Shade is offline  
post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 05:41 PM
Crowned Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 4,832
All of my earlier dogs were waders and not swimmers. Nothing I could do about it, that's just the way they were. I wouldn't hold my breath on your dog suddenly discovering the joys of swimming no matter what you try.

One of my current dogs is part fish and loves swimming. Another one of my dogs is a wader but gets all upset when my other dog goes deeper for a swim and will try to go out too. The problem is that he just can't swim well and is in serious danger of drowning. I put a life vest on him now so I don't have to dive in and rescue him.

Elaine and the herd
Elaine is offline  
post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 05:52 PM
The Administrator from the Great White North, eh?
 
Castlemaid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Northern British Columbia
Posts: 16,991
Keeta liked to play in shallow water, but would not swim - she felt too insecure and scared about not being able to touch bottom, I guess. I didn't push her, and waited for her confidence to increase, but after two years (she would have been around three by then), I decided to take a more direct approach.

On a river bank with a steep drop off, I went in with her on leash, and gently pulled her in. We swam a couple of seconds, then I swam back to shore and let her touch bottom for a few seconds, then pulled her out to swim, and swam back to the shore and let her touch bottom, and so on. The idea was to show her that the shore will always be there for her to go back to. After about four or five such swim/shore/swim cycles, she caught on, and LOL, she was having a great time, and I barely could get her to come out!

She still prefers to wade and play in shallow water than to swim out to retrieve objects, but she will go in and swim on her own if it is very hot day, or if she spies something out on the water that she wants to go and check out.

Lucia


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
2009-2018

Keeta BH, OB1, TR1, AD
Rottweiler/Hairy Dog mix?? 2004-2015
Castlemaid is offline  
post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
Knighted Member
 
fuzzybunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 2,507
Well, I won't push the issue with her. Either way, she'll still have a blast if all she does is wade.

Jazz, Shiloh Shepherd, 5 yrs old, CGC HIC
Bunny, GSD X, 7.5 years old
fuzzybunny is offline  
post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 08:11 AM
Master Member
 
cindy_s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: DE
Posts: 572
I actually teach them to swim. I bring them into the water and support their bodies with both arms. There is always a bit of resistance at first, but they quickly learn that they are safe. Maybe not real happy at first! Then I start moving around with them in the water when they are calm. They will start moving their legs in a swimming motion, but I keep them supported initially. When they are close to shore, I let them go on and swim out on their own. I don't think I've ever had to repeat the whole procedure more than twice for any one dog. They quickly learn there is nothing to fear. Just my experience, but I've had 7 "water rats" throughout my life. All were taught this way.
Either way, if you choose to try to teach swimming or just let your dog try to figure it out on her own, have a good time!!!!

Cinzar's Dark Shadow Too (Ruger) CGC, RN 1/8/05
SG Quinn Z Old Farm (Cues) IPO 3, KKL 6/7/09
cindy_s is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome