Post # 1
We have a boxer puppy, and we have been told that boxers don’t like water. I was really shocked because I thought all dogs loved to swim. So far, I know our puppy loves baths (though he won’t move AT ALL in the tub – he freezes), but he hates the rain and puddles. He does love snow though.
I don’t want to scare him or throw him in the water, but I do want him to be integrated in our summer family activities. We just got a boat, and we love to swim. So my question is, what is the best way to positive introduce our puppy to the boat and swimming so he enjoys it?
Post # 3
Don’t have advice, unfortunatly, but PIC PLEASE!!!
Post # 4
@MrsPanda99: My dog is the same thing. Hated rain and puddles, liked playing in sprinklers and stays completely still when we bathe him.
Here’s what we did: bought him a doggy life vest and brought him on the pontoon boat.
When we went swimming we closed the little door to the ladder to close him in. We had no idea how he’d react. *Note we go to a lake and sometimes stop at the little islands to swim at a “beach.”
So we brought him along mainly for that reason, he can run around unleashed and we won’t lose him on a tiny island.
Well we stopped in the middle of the lake b/c we got hot and just wanted to cool down. Since the door was closed, he was poking his head over it, looking at us and whining. Then to our surprise, he scrambled over it and jumped in!!
Eventually he learned to climb the ladder (at first we had to push him up and help him).
Now he loves to go on our boat. He adores the attention he gets every time he “dives.”
Also, he had been on few car trips before my father bought the boat.
ETA: I added some details
Post # 5
@maloussii: I have an awesome slow-motion video of our dog jumping in. I’ll share when I get home 🙂
Post # 6
@maloussii: Lol +1!! I love boxers, especially puppies!
Post # 8
@Chrysoberyl: That’s a great idea. We have been logging at doggy life jackets, and I think it is a great idea. I know dogs can swim (in theory), but swimming can also get tiring. I would LOVE if our furbaby would just jump in because I don’t want to force him in. He follows me everywhere, so I’m hoping that when he sees me in the water, he will come too. Thank you, and yes, we loooooooooove pet pictures!! Lol.
Now we just have to figure out how he can go pee on the boat 😛
Post # 9
@MrsPanda99: Yeah he can definitely swim b/c we take the life vest off when we camp. But if his legs get tired he’ll be safe.
Our dog is pretty well trained. No accidents for a good 4-5 years now. Usually we stop NEAR land (not on land b/c of the nasty Georgia clay – it’s rare that you find a good SANDY island) but we can tell when he has to pee b/c instead of diving and climbing over and over again, he starts swimming towards land.
Post # 10
i have a boxer / staffie cross she’s now 18 months old and has just learnt to love water. But i can’t overly advice as she learnt water wasn’t as bad as she thought by accident when she fell into a lake on boxing day. She was chasing some ducks and didn’t notice that the snow ended and water began -_-
Anyway since then when er’ve been on long walks when it’s warm she’ll always go for a swim in the ponds etc, so maybe it’s something they just grow into. She still won’t go for a walk if it’s raining though (tbh i don’t blame her) and she has an annoying habit of if it starts to rain when we’re already walking of just sitting down and refusing to walk in the rain.
Gotta love doggies 😛
Post # 11
We have two bully breeds. Both REFUSE to go outside when it is raining and will gallop and LEAP over puddles to not get their feet wet. Our male stands stock-still for a bath and lets you do as you please to him. He will harumph if you spray him directly in the face. (I don’t read this as enjoying the water, just him being a tolerant dog that allows us to do anything we want to him)
Our female on the other hand, acts like you are trying to water-board her when it’s bathtime. We physically have to wrestle her into the tub and lay on her to get her clean. This is how she has been since we got her 5 years ago.
The first time we took her to a doggie beach, she played with the other dogs in water up to her ankles which we were HIGHLY impressed with. She went bounding after a lab and all of sudden she sank like a stone. (The beach had a drop off point about 15 feet from the shore line) My fiance (then boyfriend) had to kick off his shoes and drop his pants to go in after her. She had NO IDEA how to swim and her stocky body and skinny legs are not condusive to swimming. So, we never went back to doggie beach.
Then we went to the bay on a REALLY hot day. Our male showed no interest in going into the water. Yet our female was enthralled by the lapping of the water and the STICKS! GLORIOUS STICKS! They were just floating around…. free for the taking. After a few throws of some sticks, she was barreling right in and having the time of her life!
We live right off the water and now when you say “Wanna go swimming” they both go NUTS. We just bought our female a life jacket because she is a bit too cocky in the water and still isn’t a fluid swimmer. (It looks more like not drowing then actually swimming)And because of her cockiness, if a stick is beyond her reach, she will swim to Europe to fetch it.
We also keep them teathered with 30 ft leads that way if need be, we can drag them back in.
Our male is an extremely STRONG swimmer. If you hold his harness he can actually drag you back into shore.
Moral of my long-winded story: Even scaredy dogs can learn to LOVE the water.
Our female will let us bathe her outside now with no problems. She knows she needs to have the salt water cleaned off before she can go in the house. So she happily lets you hose her down.
And our male now doesn’t mind getting his tootsies wet if there is a kiddie pool for him to loll about in.
Post # 12
@MrsCDMcC: LOL @ more like not drowning than swimming. I would even happily take that! I was thinking about getting him a kiddie pool for the backyard so he can practice. I guess I won’t know until we try to take him, but I was just hoping for some positive stories for encouragement (I’m terrified he will hate it and have to spend big chunks of the summer without us because we aren’t giving up the boat, or the beach!).
Post # 13
If you have a dog park with a pond/swimming area you can try that. It took my dog a few times to get used to it but he loves swimming now. He loves playing fetch so I’d toss a ball out into the water.
Post # 14
My dog hates water (rain, baths, all of it) but a couple years ago she went on vaction with us including the beach and my friends boat. I didn’t get her a life vest becuase it was a one time thing, but I considered it.
Basically when we got to the beach I picked her up and carried her to where the water was about 1ft deep, and dipped her feet in. Then we moved to the deeper and I lowered her into the water but still holding her. She had never been in water before so I didn’t know if she could swim or not. She was not happy about it at first, would instantly turn herself around and go back to the beach. But as the day went on she got more comfortable and by the end was swimming around. Not sure how large your dog is but if you can hold him like that it’s worth a try.
Post # 15
@MrsPanda99: He will be fine. If he is toy motivated… that will be your go to. Introduce him to the water from the shore at first. Go in and have him follow you in. Play with toys. make sure it is a HOT day.
Taking him on a noisy boat and tossing him overboard will terrify him (Though that is EXACTLY how my siblings and I were taught how to swim!)
If he still hates the water, then work on him just enjoying the boat. Just because you are swimming doesn’t mean he can’t stay safely on the boat to watch.
How old is he?
Post # 16
we started with the kiddie pool in the backyard. moving in to a lake with a beach next so she can wander in on her own