Many dog breeds around the world are renowned for being water dogs and actively love being in the water. Seas, rivers, streams, and pools, so many dogs are happiest when swimming. This article sets out to explore the relationship between Goldendoodle and the water and we answer such questions as doo they like water and can they swim? Let’s dive right in and explore the watery world of Goldendoodles.
Goldendoodles do enjoy the water but this enjoyment might not always be apparent from the get-go. To build up their confidence introduce your Goldendoodle to the water slowly. Once this is achieved positively and steadily your Goldendoodle will enjoy regular swims.
As with a lot of things, it’s never a one size fits all answer, so we’ll first take a look at the best way to introduce your Goldendoodle to water. We’ll also provide you with our very own top tips to keeping your dog safe in the water and look at some things you may not have considered when it comes to taking your dog swimming such as grooming.
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Goldendoodles and the Water
Before we begin, it’s important to pay heed to the fact that every Goldendoodle born on this planet has its own personality consisting of their unique likes and dislikes. You can’t assume by choosing a Goldendoodle that they will be predisposed to a love for the water. They may very well love it from their first experience with it or indeed may need some coaxing and encouragement. Now that we’ve said this, we can talk in more general terms but always bear in mind how different each dog can be.
Ordinarily, Goldendoodles adore water and for this, we can look back to their parents – the Poodle and the Golden Retriever. Both historically considered water dogs, Poodles, and Golden Retrievers were trained to fetch hunted waterfowl and bring them back unharmed. Due to both parents having this affinity to the water you would be permitted for hoping your Goldendoodle too will be keen to get wet. As we’ve already hinted though, it’s not a given and may take time to build up their love for the water.
Introducing Your Goldendoodle to Water
Firstly, let’s look at when you can give your new pup their first water experience. You will need to wait until they’ve received their vaccinations and have been wormed. You should also seek advice from your vet to ensure they are fit and well enough to start regular swimming. We also highly recommend training your pup before swimming because commands will come in handy once your dog is in water. Once you feel your dog knows who is boss and is up to date with their vaccinations you can now think about taking them in water.
It’s very important to start gradually with new water experiences because if a dog gets scared when put in the deep end (excuse the pun) then you may find they take an instant dislike to water. One of my own dogs (a border collie) sadly fell into our garden pond as a small pup – he was scooped right up but I’m certain this gave him his aversion to water, he now avoids it at all costs, including puddles! So, take it slow with your new pup and it might be best to keep your dog on a leash for the interim.
You may consider purchasing a pool designed for dogs if you want it to be a frequent activity. But to begin with, a large bowl of water will be just fine. We don’t recommend very deep water to start with. Make sure you have the time to sit with your dog while they are in the water because they shouldn’t be left alone. Also, be sure not to leave them in water too long when they do start to move around and gain confidence in deeper water. Dogs tire easily in water – a general rule of thumb is 5 to 10 minutes in the beginning then increase by another 5 minutes per month of age.
Top Tip: If you live near a beach then you have the perfect opportunity to introduce your dog to the water. A leash and shallow waters are a must until you and your dog have built up trust.
Once your dog swims confidently and enjoys this you can do this activity a few times a week.
Can Goldendoodles Instinctively Swim?
So, the golden question…. when you put your Goldendoodle into deeper water will they know how to start swimming? It’s not a given so don’t assume that they will. If you build the experience up slowly as we recommend, then your pooch will gain confidence in the water as it gets deeper.
It’s important to have a clear way for them to get out. As for getting in, once confident they’ll happily bound in of their own accord. If your pooch isn’t so keen to learn and doesn’t seem confident then you could try a life vest. Dogs swim in different ways, some may be almost fully submerged while some will keep as much on top of the water as possible.
Our Top Tips for Keeping Your Dog Safe in the Water
We’ve put together some tips for keeping your pooch safe in the water so that it can become an enjoyable activity for all with minimum stress.
- Constant Adult Supervision – Pick a time when you can be with your dog for the whole time they are in the water. They should never be left unattended as they can tire easily or suffer from ailments such as cramps.
- Always Ensure Your Dog Can Get Out – Whenever you choose to take your dog swimming please make sure they can get out on their own.
- Extra Food and Water May be Required – Your dog will burn many calories during their time in water and due to this will need some extra food. They will likely require a good drink of fresh water afterward too.
- Don’t Overdo It – Your dog will tire very quickly swimming so it’s important not to overdo it. As they get older, they will last a bit longer in the water.
- Make Sure all Treatments are up to Date – Whatever water you use for swimming be sure your dog’s flea, worming, and vaccinations are all up to date.
- Clean Your Dog Pool Regularly – If you use your own doggy pool then it’s important to clean it regularly including the filter which can become clogged with hair.
- Dry Your Pooch Well – Your dog will need toweling dry after a swim and it’s important to keep an eye on the ears which can get infected if too much moisture remains. Dogs tend to do a good job of shaking the moisture out but just keep an eye on any unpleasant smells. You can buy dog ear solutions that help with keeping them clean.
- Safety in Open Waters – If your dog enjoys rivers and the sea then please take great care of staying away from the currents and being aware of high and low tides. Life vests are so important as is a good knowledge of the open water.
- Watch Out for Hazards in The Sea – By hazards, we mean sea creatures such as jellyfish, fishermen and any other risks that you may encounter.
- Be Mindful of Heat Exhaustion and Hypothermia – It’s imperative to be aware of climate factors because both of these conditions are so dangerous to dogs and can escalate very quickly.
- Avoid Diseased Waters – From time to time there will be warning signs up near rivers or streams warning you to keep your dogs out due to things such as algae which can cause illness in your dog.
Grooming Your Goldendoodle After a Swim
Will your Goldendoodle need any specific grooming regime after a spell in the water? The simple answer is, yes. It will depend on where your dog swims as to how strict a routine they need once back home. Dog fur can dry out when in contact with water chemicals and salt so it’s important to get rid of all the dirt. Using a conditioner can help too.
Whatever their swim environment, it’s essential to give your dog a thorough rinse to get rid of any dirt and chemicals. If your dog has had a more vigorous water session then a full bath with shampoo will be necessary, paying attention to all crevices such as under the collar and armpits. When using a regular shampoo be sure it’s a gentle one because over-washing your dog can be harmful to their skin.
Drying your dog with a towel is necessary and it’s a good way of warming them back up gradually too. Pay particular attention to the ears, Goldendoodles have a narrow ear canal which can sometimes cause issues. After this just do your usual brushing routine and then let them rest, they’ll be needing it. Remember to leave them a meal and plenty of drinking water to refuel.
Benefits to Doggy Swimming
- Helps reduce obesity
- Can help conditions such as arthritis and hip dysplasia
- A good way to reduce stress
- Increases health and fitness
- Pre/Post Surgery exercise (always after consulting your vet)