Dogs and Swimming Pools

Let’s go swimming, Lassie! A great number of households have swimming pools that their pets can access. How safe is this for the pets? We all know that dogs can swim. In fact, some are bred specifically to be good swimmers. However, should pet owners be concerned for their pet’s safety when it comes to the swimming pool?

Unfortunately, they should. There are a great number of risk factors that many families don’t consider when they allow for their pet to have close access to a pool. Regardless of being good swimmers, dogs can drown by accident. This can happen in a number of ways:

  1. Your pet could accidentally slip in if there is standing water around the pool edge.
  2. If you have multiples pets, one could accidently get pushed in during playtime.
  3. If a pet jumps into the pool without any human family members, it may not be able to get out. Dogs are especially vulnerable in pools without steps.

In order to prevent a tragic accident, there are some ways to make your pool both a cool and safe place for your pooch. Follow these steps for dog pool safety:

  1. If you don’t already have steps into the pool, try to get some. It would be especially helpful to your pet if the steps have a non-slippery surface. You can even find specialty stairs now that are designed for dogs to get in and out of pools.
  2. Only allow dogs in swimming pools when there are others in it as well (and by others, I do mean human “others”). Train your pet as you would for any other command, and reward it with treats.
  3. Be sure that your dog has access to the pool only when you allow it. This can be done by keeping your pet indoors or by placing a fence around the pool. Depending on your pooch, another option is to create a playpen or play area for your furry friend.

The family pool does not have to be a dangerous place for pets. With just a few precautions, it can become a fun, family activity where even your dog can join in.

Do you have a family pool? What measures do you take to protect your pets? Tell us in the comments!

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