Safety Checks Before Taking Your Dog In Pool

Want to take your canine friend into the pool to take a dip and beat the scorching heat without risking its safety in any way? Read through this article to take your dog in the pool and learn about some water safety advice to ensure they stay out of danger.

Dog in Pool: Get Them Ready for the Action With Complete Security

Fortunate enough to have a pool in your backyard? Planning to take your furry friend in there so that they can wade, lounge and splash their paws in the water? It’s important to teach them safe pool manners so that the experience is always fun and cool for them. After all, pool safety should be a concern for everyone including your dog.

However, first of all, it is important to make sure your doggo is comfortable getting into the water. After all, not all dogs are good swimmers, and not all breeds are at ease in pools. If left unsupervised near a pool, several brachycephalic breeds with flat faces or extremely short snouts like the bulldogs, pugs, and boxers may drown.

So, whether you have a dog that is averse even with its weekly bathing schedules or a Retriever or Otterhound that loves to jump in the pool, there are pool dangers and safety precautions that you must be aware of.

In this article, we have rounded up all the important information you need to know to ensure pool safety for dogs at all times.

Are Chlorine Pools Safe For Dogs?

If you are wondering if dogs swimming in the pool are safe, the short answer is: Yes, with supervision. According to the CDC, the recommended level of chlorine in swimming pools is 1 – 3 milligrams per liter (mg/L).

You can let your dog join you in your chlorinated or saltwater swimming pool, as long as they don’t drink a lot of water from it. This is because if your dog swallows too much pool water, they may get water intoxication and their blood sodium levels may become too diluted.

But if you are wondering about skipping chlorine in your swimming pool, please remember that it is an essential component of your swimming pool since it breaks down into hypochlorous acid and hypochlorite ions, both of which destroy microorganisms and bacteria lurking in the water.

Moreover, if you have a saltwater pool, your dog could become salt poisoned if it consumes too much pool water. If you’re having trouble convincing your dog not to drink the pool water, keep fresh water nearby so that they may quench their thirst with drinkable water.

Furthermore, the effects of chlorine on dogs are comparable to those on humans. However, your dog may experience minor skin irritation, which you can alleviate by rinsing them off after they’ve finished swimming in the pool.

You wouldn’t want to encourage your dog to jump into chlorinated water if it has a skin disease or has a really delicate coat. This is due to the fact that chlorinated water can cause skin irritation, dryness, and itchiness in some sensitive dogs, making their fur brittle and dull.

Are Chlorine Pools Safe For Dogs?

How Dogs Affect Your Pool?

You may or may not have heard this but did you know that a dog in a pool equals nearly three people in the water? This is because if you allow your dog to swim in the pool, it will shed its hair, dirt and oil from its skin into the water.

You might not want to hear this but dogs always have small particles of fecal matter stuck in their fur. So, unfortunately, even if you can’t see it, your dog will bring dirt, dander and whatnot into the pool, and it will all end up in the skimmer and pump basket. This will further have a great impact on the pH level of the pool as well as use up the pool’s chlorine at a faster rate.

Is It OK to Let Your Dog Swim In Your Pool? Is There Any Additional Care Required?

Many people consider their dog as part of the family and enjoy it when their furry friend joins them in the pool. However, knowing about the impact of having a dog in the pool concerns people and makes them ask whether they should allow their doggo inside or not.

  • This is completely true that dogs swimming in pools affect the water chemistry.
  • Their fecal matter in the pool water will also increase the risks of transmission of Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs) such as E. coli, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Hepatitis A, etc.
  • Moreover, the fur of your dog in the pool will get entangled in the pool’s equipment necessitating more frequent service and/or replacement of parts, as well as greater service and maintenance charges.

However, with good and regular maintenance and a few additional tweaks to restore the water clarity, swimming pools are generally safe to be shared with dogs. So, if you want to swim with your canine friend, your pool water will need to work harder. Here are a few effective steps you can make for the same:

  • Adjust the pH balance of the pool water and the chlorine concentrations in it frequently, since the added bacteria from your dog may throw off the pH balance.
  • Make sure your pool’s filtration system is working properly, and clean the filters on a regular basis.
  • De-shed or brush your dog before allowing them in the pool to reduce the quantity of dog hair in the filter!
  • Manually clean the pool after each swimming session.
  • Once the hair has settled, additional skimming the next day will be beneficial.
  • Empty the pool water regularly to make sure you have clean water all the time.

After knowing all this, if you are planning to prohibit your dog’s entry into the pool for the sake of hygiene, please don’t! Your doggo might love its swimming sessions and would really get upset if you don’t let them take a dip in the pool. You can rather buy one of the best pets pool for them so that they can beat the heat without sharing the pool with you or your kids.

Pool Maintenance

Safety Checks Before Taking Your Dog in Pool

Before you allow your dog to swim, here are a few things you must take care of:

1. Determine Its Swimming Capability

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), not all dogs are natural swimmers. So, don’t expect your furry friend to be able to swim as soon as you take them to the pool. Most importantly, understand your dog’s swimming abilities before letting it swim. Even if you have a retriever, don’t expect him to be a strong swimmer. Please keep in mind that strong swimmers are determined by personalities more than breeds.

2. Teach Him How to Swim Patiently

If your dog is already an excellent swimmer, that’s fantastic; if not, take the time to train him.

  • Begin with a small pool with shallow waters.
  • Carry your dog in your arms in the pool and gently lower him into the water.
  • Never force your dog into the pool or throw him in.
  • During the first exposure, be ready for an apprehensive reaction from your dog.
  • Gradually let go more and more until your dog’s instincts take over, and he begins to swim on his own.
  • Be patient throughout the process as some dogs can learn swimming within a few days while others may take weeks or even a month and a half.

3. Familiarize Your Dog With the Pool

The key to an easy and smooth swimming experience is familiarizing and guiding your dog a little deeper into the pool. ​This will boost its confidence and help it learn to swim more quickly. Whether your pool has stairs or you are using a pet-friendly pool ladder or ramp, teach your dog to enter and exit the pool safely.

However, make sure to be patient as most dogs fear when they attempt to exit a pool for the first time. After all, they aren’t used to walking up the ladder. Furthermore, knowing how to exit the water will reduce panic in the event of an accidental fall.

4. Train Your Dog To Obey

If your dog responds well to commands like “sit”, “stay”, “leave it”, “down”, etc., teach them another essential command – “come”. Your pal should always come when you call because this makes sure they leave the pool obediently and immediately as soon as you call them out. To master this command, reward your canine friend with affection and a treat every time he obeys you.

5. Make Sure Your Dog is Comfortable

Before you let your dog into the pool, confirm if he is fully comfortable and physically healthy enough to swim. This will make sure he can enter, swim and exit the pool on his own – without panicking or risking his safety.

Safety Checks Before Taking Your Dog in Pool

Some Important Things To Remember When Your Dog Is In The Pool

Once you are confident about letting your dog swim in the pool, here are a few important pointers to remember when they are inside:

1. Invest In a High-Quality Dog Life Jacket

Whether your dog is a rookie or a seasoned swimmer, a great-quality dog life jacket that fits your canine companion properly will always keep you at ease. However, make sure to buy one that comes with adjustable straps and a handle so you can quickly grab and lift your dog out of the pool if necessary.

2. Keep Your Dog Hydrated

According to the ASPCA, higher temperatures intensify near water. So, to prevent your dog from drinking chlorinated pool water and to make him stay hydrated, keep drinking water nearby and offer him easy access to shade.

3. Always Make Sure to Supervise

Even if your dog is a strong swimmer, never leave it alone in or around the pool because emergencies occur unpredictably and you never know what may happen.

4. Trim Its Nails

Make sure your dog’s nails are cut before letting them free in a vinyl swimming pool. Uncut nails can snag the pool lining, causing discomfort for them and costing you money!

5. Don’t Forget to Check the Water Temperature

Before allowing your dog to swim in the pool, make sure the water temperature is appropriate. Only a few breeds can survive really cold water, so keep that in mind.

Some Additional Tips to Enhance Dog Safety While Swimming

That was not all! Here are some more important (and effective) dog safety tips you must practice:

1. Be Regular With Your Cleaning Schedule

Since a dirty pool could make you and your dog potentially sick, make sure to clean it regularly and maintain the water with the recommended levels of chemicals.

2. Always Keep Chemicals & Cleaners Away

Although you would need to work harder with your pool cleanliness and maintenance, always store concentrated chemicals and cleaners out of your dog’s reach. After all, there is a big difference between tolerating low chlorine levels in pool water and a huge stash of cleaning supplies.

3. Restrict Their Entry When You Are Not Around

  • If you have an in-ground pool in your backyard, always make sure to keep the gates closed and ensure everyone in the family knows and follows this rule.
  • If you have a pets pool, drain the water when you’re not home to supervise.

4. Enclose the Pool

  • As a precaution, consider installing high pool fences that are effective in keeping your dog out of the pool area.
  • If pool fences don’t seem to be a feasible option, you can also purchase a safety pool cover to protect your dog from water dangers when the pool is not in use. Please keep in mind that, according to ASTM regulations, a safety pool cover must be well-fitting, strapped to the deck, and capable of withstanding 485 pounds per five square feet.

5. Do Not Mistake a Safety Pool Cover for a Floating Pool Cover

There have been hundreds of incidents where countless dogs, even excellent swimmers, have died as a result of an unexpected tumble into a covered pool. Falling beneath or on top of a floating cover is extremely disorienting, for the dog, making it nearly impossible for him to find his way out. Always choose a safety cover that fits over the entire pool and meets the ASTM safety standards rather than a floating pool cover.

6. Invest in Some Precautionary Gadgets

  • Moreover, you can also invest in a gate alarm that will alert you if your dog manages to push through the gate in case it is not properly secured or the latch is broken.
  • You can also get a pool alarm system that detects motion in the water and instantly notifies you if your dog has gotten into the pool water accidentally or out of curiosity. The sensor on the alarm is usually triggered by the waves caused by your dog’s motion. A pool alarm system also makes a great investment if you have kids at home.

7. Purchase Some Safety Adds-Ons

If you want to buy one of the best pools safe for dogs, consider choosing one with a seat or a ledge. It not only helps your dog sit back and relax when it needs a break but also signifies that there are multiple points of entry and exits for your doggy.

8. Don’t Neglect the After Care

Always rinse your dog with normal water after exposure to chlorinated pool water to make sure their skin doesn’t become irritated. You can also avoid ear infections by gently drying their ears with a soft towel.

Most importantly, do not allow your dog to sit in a wet collar; otherwise, they may develop hot spots, a painful skin condition characterised by reddish, moist, and swollen skin caused by allergies, infection, parasites, or moisture trapped within the coat.

Remember to pay attention to other areas that may remain damp for longer than usual, such as the ears, groin and armpits, as these areas can develop moisture-induced irritations or infections fast.

9. Notice If They Exhibit Any Unusual Symptoms

As long as your pal appears happy and healthy, let him enjoy the water. However, if your dog seems to have an adverse reaction to chlorine, he might show strange symptoms and signs of irritation or allergies such as red eyes and coughing.

In such a case, remove them from the pool immediately and seek medical attention as soon as possible. If your dog really enjoys its swimming time, consider providing him with a pets pool alternative once it has recovered.

10. Learn How to Perform Dog CPR

Pet parents should always learn how to do CPR before they let their dogs wander around and enjoy in pools. Dog CPR allows you to think more clearly, and jump into action straight away without feeling panicked.

Frequently Asked Questions About Pool Safety For Dogs

Still have some questions before taking your dog to the pool? Here are our answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about dog safety in the pool.

Should you let your dog swim in the pool?

Although it is true that dogs leave bacteria in pool water and can affect the water’s pH significantly, it is your choice to decide whether or not to let him get into your swimming pool. If you allow your dog inside, you will need to be more cautious about safety and maintenance. Also, it will be a time-consuming process to keep your pool chemical levels in check and make sure your filtration system is working well.

Can dogs swim in a chlorine pool?

In most cases, a well maintained chlorinated swimming pool with chlorine levels of 1 to 3 milligrammes per litre (mg/L) is safe for dogs to swim in and is not considered dangerous. However, if your dog swallows too much pool water, it may get water intoxication or salt poisoning. Moreover, some sensitive dogs are allergic to chlorine and might get skin irritation, dryness, and itchiness.

Can my dog swim in pools?

Yes. Your dog can swim in a pool as long as he knows how to swim properly and chills under your supervision.

The Bottom Line

When summer temperatures soar, taking your dog in the pool is a great way to cool them off and have fun with them. Furthermore, swimming is an excellent way for dogs to burn off those excess calories, remain in shape and even lose weight. So, to keep its swim time as great as it should be, never ignore pool safety for dogs and never leave your dog unattended no matter how well it swims.

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