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Duke (RIP) loved the water. Literally would jump and the ocean and retrieve a ball from 12 weeks on. From this I assumed GSD's loved water. My experience with my 11 week old Frisco is the opposite. I know it's early, but he runs away from the in and out tide. I don't think he is going to love the water, which is fine given our recent shark infestation here in New England.

Just curious if your GSD likes the water?
 

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All mine do, swimming is a regular exercise outlet for them during the hotter months. I would not give up on Frisco too quick, some pups take longer than others to see the fun in swimming. You might try introducing him to calmer water at a lake and see how that goes.
 

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mine like swimming but with the warnings about blue algae and the sewer leak in a neighboring county, we are staying out of the rivers and ponds. Hose play in the back yard will have to do.
 

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Lyka HATES the water, in any form but drinking water. Sprinklers come on? She books it into the house. Kids playing with the hose? Books it into the house. Seeing another of our dogs being bathed? Books it and hides inside the house. She’s just terrified of water.

Crios and Seiran both love it. But it’s an in ground pool, not the ocean. Floki was weary of the water, but DH said he followed Seiran in the other day and had been a water otter ever since. So 1 out of 4 hates the water.
 

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Luna absolutely loves the water! Ocean, rivers, pools, lakes, puddles, whatever has water, she loves. She wouldn't go into the pool at first when she was 9 months old. Just kept barking at the pool cause she was unsure so I bought a doggy life vest which kept her afloat to help her feel more confident and safe. Now she has no use for the life vest and is obsessed with the pool. You should get your pup a life vest and help him enjoy the water with lots of treats as well! He's still a baby and he'll learn through experience to either love the water or hate it.
 

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Thanks for all the feedback. Yeah, it might be too early to tell. We do have a pool and he loves to hang over the edge almost falling in to bark at us swimming and runs back and forth. I have picked him up and brought him in to get him wet but have not let go. I know puppies can swim but I don't want it to traumatize him and make him afraid of the water or have him think when we go in, he will stay away for fear of being pulled in. I had a GD that I did this to at an early age and when we went swimming, he stayed clear. He never liked the water, but Duke the GSD would walk in and out, swim, etc.

After I brought Frisco in a few times and put him back down on the deck edge, he still never went away and still got on edge and barked at us seemingly like he wants to jump in, so I don't think he is afraid of the water. It's just the ocean this week is why I ask, he didn't even like walking in the relenting tide. I do kind of hope he is a swimmer.
 

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I think he will like he is still a bit young to tell. I do agree with the others try swimming in the more calmer water and patience and not make a big thing about it. You can introduce him to water let him become comfortable with it and have fun near it if he seems reserved about it. I would not force him he has to want to go in on his own even if he is following another dog or you or chasing a toy in the water. I would put a long lead on for the first few swims if you are not going in with him.

Max was a winter pup so his first swim was when he was 5-6 months. he loves the ocean and the big waves he always liked even as a young pup he would walk through the surf.The riptides can be strong and the waves on most days so I made sure his first swim did not drag him out or Knock him down. Which I don’t think he would mind. For first swims though the bay where there the tides were mild were best for first swims. I am watchful of the ocean it is rough. I keep him from going in the ocean when the sun goes down. Once or twice he has seen something in the water at that time of day that looks like he was going to jump in after but called him away.

Luna did not ever care for surfing the waves in the ocean lol maybe if the ocean had a deep connected sand bar she will want to swim otherwise has not much interest in the ocean. Luna much prefers the calmer bay. She was an older pup to by the time summer came around. Her first swim she followed us in the water to do some small swims in the bay in the spring time. In the summer second time we brought Max with luna and kids and we all swam in the bay. They both have lots of fun in the water. Luna would just swim around all day if she could. They both watch over the kids and want to swim out to them if they go under. The hose to them is bath time.
 

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IME with my dogs, I find that they either like to swim or they like to splash around on the water's edge. It seems to be an either or proposition. And then you have the ones that simply prefer their water squirted from a hose.
 

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Dogs learn a lot from other dogs. If you have friends with dogs, take the puppy with and let him watch.
 

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All of my dogs are water hounds! Frisco is still a baby, let him choose to go in on his own terms. I’ve found a natural water source with a sloping bank is ideal, even better if you have another water confident dog to show them the ropes. Never force him in!
 

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It took Leo a few months to adapt to the water, he now can't get enough of it. We take him to a beach at Lake Michigan where he can run and swim off leash.
 

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One thing I’ve noticed is how both our wgsl dogs were/are absolute nutters for anything water. I’ve noticed the same with a few other wgsl dogs as well. The hose, water bowl, lake, river, puddles, if it’s wet it’s like OMG!!! Water!!! My others thoroughly enjoy swimming, especially play fetch, but none will get wound up over the other stuff.
 

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Nope. He jumps over puddles.

I live in Florida. You think he would. But lakes are filled with alligators and the ocean was full of Red Tide when I got him. Tried to get him in a pool and it was a no-go. I was in the pool and he just circled the entire pool trying to figure out how to get to me without actually having to get in. lol

My last dog LOVED swimming in lakes. But I was living up North then.
 

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Mine watched another dog retrieve a ball in a lake as a pup and that’s all it took. She loves to retrieve so will swim fast for that. Wish she liked to swim relaxed just to swim.
That’s what worked with my last dog. He was ball crazy and wanted to get to the ball first. I think he was about 6 months old. Couldn’t keep him out of the water after that.
 

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Mine both love to swim, paddle, get wet, get sprayed by the hose, pretty much anything related to water. The puppy loses her ever-loving mind and goes flying down to the goose pond, jumps in and swims 2 or 3 times a day. Then she doesn't shake till she's back beside me or my DH. Then everyone is wet!
 

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Yes it sounds like wgsl’s may be part dolphin. If I had a lake , ocean or pool in the backyard they would be in all day so would I. We have a water park near us at the end of season before they close it down for the year they open it to the dogs. I have not been down but some may want to see if a water park near them does the same.

If anyone on Instagram - island dog has some great videos and photos - in Zanzibar
https://instagram.com/the_island_dog?igshid=1gon43jiepeeh
 

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My pup ran right into the lake at 16 weeks and started swimming around his first time there. He loves a small kiddie pool in the backyard too, he will lay right down in the pool and drink from the hose as I fill it for him.
 
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