Dogs need adventure and excitement to keep them stimulated and happy. There are so many different smells and textures for their paws to keep their brain working. Just remember to bring a towel when you take your dog swimming in the sea!
Things to check before your dog swims
- Check whether your local beaches allow dogs. Not all beaches allow dogs and some have certain restrictions.
- Check the quality of the water in your area before you take your dog swimming. This is important for both your health and your dog’s health. Water quality can be checked here and here.
- Check tide times in your area.
Essential items for your trip
- Remember to bring a long lead so your dog can play. If you are in an area where dogs are allowed off-lead, make sure they have a very reliable recall.
- Water to drink and to rinse the salt water off of your dog
- Suncream if it’s hot and sunny
- Pet wipes
Luna's First time in the sea
Luna experienced her first time in the sea yesterday. She enjoys going to the beach but is always wary of the sea as she was rescued from the streets of a city so she’s not seen it before. As Luna is getting braver and calmer, I decided it was time to teach her the sea is safe and fun for her to get her paws wet.
The sea was quite calm which is not only good for beginners but all dogs. Do not let your dog swim if the sea is rough or if there are rip-tides. They could easily be swept out to sea and struggle to swim. It’s important to remember that not all dogs know how to swim so it’s best to take things slowly so they don’t get out of their depth.
I had my treat bag filled with biscuits and chicken but I still wasn’t sure this was enough to tempt Luna in. However, it turned out she trusted me enough to come into the shallows.
As Luna was still very nervous, she was only coming to me as the waves went out to get the chicken and then backing away to get out of the water again. This is why a long lead is important to allow her to escape the sea if she wanted to. It’s important not to force your dog into the water if they don’t want to as not all dogs like swimming.
Tempting...Tempting...Treats always work for luna
Luna started to get braver and was staying next to me in the water to wait for the next treat.
Also, apparently there was a lovely sunset behind me but I was so focused on Luna and her reactions that I didn’t have time to look!
When I’d checked the tide times before our visit, I knew that the tide would be coming in. So, rather than going deeper into the water I stayed where I was. Luna was still happy even though the tide was coming in and the water was getting deeper.
Luna made it quite a long way in for her first time! She was up to about half way up her legs before I was running low on treats. Another good tip for new experiences is to end it while it is still a positive event. So I made sure that I took Luna out of the water while she was still calm. I gave her lots of biscuits and we had play time on the beach.
Now you’re prepared for taking your dog swimming, or at least for a paddle in the shallows! Don’t forget that although there are lots of things to be aware of to keep both you and your dog safe, it’s supposed to be a fun day out. Remember to take some toys and lots of water and you can have an exciting, new playground for you and your pet.
Luna had her second time in the sea today! We went at low tide and she loved running through the wet sand and rock pools. She even took a brave jump into a slightly deeper one! (Well…her body wasn’t in the water but it was almost up to the top of her legs!)