Cinema Veterinary Centre

Water Safety for Dogs

Posted on Jun 17, 2013 by jronchetto  | Tags: pet safety

Summer is here and the temperature is already soaring.  Cooling off by the pool or heading off to the beach or lake are great ways to beat the heat with your pet.   Water fun can quickly turn into disaster if you’re not careful however.  Here are some helpful tips from the ASPCA to help keep your pets safe around the water.

  • Don’t leave pets unsupervised around water—not all dogs are good swimmers and some may even panic when they are in the water.
  • If you are introducing your pet to the pool for the first time it is important to teach them where the stairs are and how to get out should they ever be unattended and accidentally fall in or become fatigued while swimming.
  • Heat from the sun is more intense around water. Watch your dog for signs of sunburn or heat stroke. Symptoms include: excessive panting or labored breathing, diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, weakness, and dry tacky gums. Try to keep your pets off hot sand or pavement as it can blister paws.
  • Buy your dog a life jacket- and use it. Just like with people, it’s easy for your pup to develop a cramp in her leg, become exhausted too far from shore, or get overwhelmed by tides if swimming in a river or ocean. If you’re spending time on a boat or near docks, it would also be a good idea to consider purchasing a life jacket for your pup. Accidents happen and a life jacket can save their life.
  • Rinse your dog off after swimming to remove chlorine or salt, as well as bacteria or dirt they might pick up from a pond or lake. Be sure to remove wet collars to prevent hot spots.
  • Try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals that can easily cause a bellyache. Water from lakes, ponds and rivers should also be avoided as it often contains nasty parasites that cause vomiting, diarrhea and other health issues.  And of course, salt water from the ocean should never be ingested.