If you’re like me, you’d think that all dogs naturally know how to swim. Boy was I wrong. On our first attempt, at Mark’s pool, Lady panicked and furiously paddled the water with her paws in no particular direction. Had the pool been larger and if we weren’t there, I’m sure Lady would have met an unpleasant chlorinated demise. Of course, her Daddy tried to assist her by trying to keep her afloat so that she wouldn’t panic and learn to accept the water but she wanted out of that unfamiliar situation and QUICK! Mark ended up with a million long angry red scratches all over his body after Lady was through with him. That first plunge into the water only ended up making Lady run away from us when we approached her so we were discouraged.
We tried incorporating toys and treats when we tried to coax her into the water so that she’d associate swimming with good feelings but she was a sly one and would not venture past the first step into the pool to grab her toy or a treat. So I had the idea to buy her a Petco Yellow Dog Flotation Vest to make the transition easier. I went to Petco and picked up one of these and it has helped Lady immensely. Granted, with it on, she still struggled because she thought she would sink but over time she realized it was suddenly not as scary with this flotation device on. After 3 more tries at the pool she still hates water and won’t go in unless dragged but she understands it’s not as life threatening as she perceived it to be. She now swims out with no problem.
Mark also had the brilliant idea of throwing her in the pool as punishment for picking up persimmons which are supposedly bad for them to ingest but oddly enough she actually likes it and thinks it’s a fun game. Go figure.
Mark showing Lady how to float in her life vest
Lady with her Life Vest
Melissa, Mark, and Ladybaby
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