New Member
I definately want Guus to learn how to swim. My other dog Buck loves it but I don't remember how we taught it. I remember his first time on the beach he was afraid to go into the water but somehow he got over it.

I think the best way is to start slowly by walking through the water with Guus. And if he's comfortable with that maybe through a toy a bit further into the water. Or maybe walk towards the more deeper part and see if he'll follow.

Anyone got any tips for me?

luna may

New Member
Sorry, I practically live in the middle of the dessert when it comes to things like lakes, or ponds, or even rivers... Don't even mention waterfalls ;).
On the other hand, we sure do have a pretty nice coastline. If only it weren't mid-winter... Call me in half a year, though, and I'll be glad to help xD.
Just kidding :LOL:.
I think that you could asocciate water with pleasant things, and having fun, so he would be much keener to step into them.
You can take him to a water source, or even one of those little flat portable-baby-home-pools (if you have one), and let him check it out. He'll probably start circling it, sniff it around, and mabe try to touch the water. Let him experience dipping his foot in the water, then putting a whole foot in, then mabe even stepping in with both front legs. Once he sees it's not scary, even fun, (is it summer where you live? If it it, I bet he'll also enjoy cooling down a bit ;)), then he might build up his courage and dive in.
If he's scared, you could try reinforcing him to inch deeper into the water, click&reward style :D.
Good luck and have fun! :doglaugh:


New Member
Our previous dog hated almost anything to do with water. She'd always walk around puddles, and would position herself to drink at the stream keeping all feet out of the water. Bath time was always a nightmare! She never did learn to like going in the water, even on the hottest days when all the other dogs were happily paddling around a deeper section of the stream or even diving into the mill pond. She hated going out when it was raining and would just quickly get her business done and start pulling me back home. She never had a bad experience with water as far as I know, and we got her when she was 8 weeks old so I'm pretty certain it wasn't due to trauma. Some dogs just have their own very strong quirks and preferences.

Meanwhile, Joey and Bonnie seem to both go directly from puddle to puddle - the more mud the better! :dogtongue: As a result, they get lots of showers and have gotten used to the noise of the spray head. Was a bit tough on Joey at first, but now he gets this funny resigned look on his face when I pick him up and enter the bathroom.

So you could start by simply walking your dog through any puddles along your way. If there are any really shallow streams around you, you could walk with your dog across them. On the beach, watch the dog carefully as you approach the water and see when the dog starts to hesitate. If the dog isn't showing any fear then sure, go just little bit into the water and slowly increase. But the wave action - both noise and movement - might be a little scarey at first, which is why I suggest puddles, streams and ponds first. You can also setup a kiddie pool like Luna May suggested.

Just take it really slow and easy, and don't force the dog to go into the water. Make it fun, perhaps with a toy that floats. I could imagine my terriers going after a floating toy as the waves move it back and forth. :dogsmile: (unfortunately, we're far from any ocean, but have lots of streams and ponds around here.... oh, and muddy puddles!)


New Member
Thanks! I did take him to the beach a couple of times already. But it's too cold for swimming. He was okay with getting his paws wet although the sea approaching did gatch him by surprise. You can see here, it's funny how he runs from the water.



Experienced Member
if you have another dog who love water take them too, my sisters dog luka hated geting into cold water (if it was your bath he would jump right in) but a few times at the beach or river with storm he learnt to like it, if it wasnt by accident chasing storm it was storm putting his herding talents to use and getting luka into the water, now he'll go into anything


New Member
Hehe, he looks so cute running away from the water :) . I think it's a good idea to take him swimming with another dog who's used to it. Buck loves to swimm, as soon as it's warm enough I'll take Buck and Guus together.


New Member
Guus looks pretty cute running from that wave.
Most water dogs I have had did not like water as a puppy. Most of the time we got them used to it by putting them in water no more that chest deep at first (out doors ie. a kiddie pool or small lake, a calm river will do too). A few times I've had to go swimming with them. Once they realize that your not going to let them get hurt and that they can swim, the dog usually takes it from there.
Most of the pittbulls I've known couldn't swim that well, but I had a Pitt/greyhound that would follow me around while I paddled my canoe. usually I had to go to the shore so he could get in. (A dog getting in a canoe in the middle of a lake typically gets you wet too).
I think the most important part of getting your dog used to the water is for you to be in the water with him as a safety blanket and to coach him on.
Remember you don't need to teach him to swim, you just need to help him get used to the water and being in it.
I hope that helps.


New Member
Thanks Cavalier. I'll take him to the lake when it gets a bit warmer. I can put on my wellies and walk with him through the water as a start. Soon the sea won't scare him so much anymore :) .


Emmas never been in deep water, but she has a kiddie pool all her own. She was very freaked out at first but before long she was running across the yard at full tilt then jumping headlong into it and splashing around in circles,having the time of her life!