Last week, Sugar went to an indoor dock diving pool. It’s a facility that Sugar is unfamiliar with. As a responsible pet parent, I did my online research about the place. Typically, I personally try to check out the place before setting up an appointment. Due to the great reviews and driving time of an hour, I called and reserved a time for Sugar to swim and dock dive. As soon as I got Sugar’s Super Shammy towel and her new Flotte KONG toy, she immediately sensed it was a water adventure.
As a retriever, Sugar loves to swim and jump. Sugar, as a senior dog, continues to be strong and fearless.
The day of Sugar’s dock dive swim, I shared the photo collage below on our FB Page. I was very amazed on how many likes/comments/shares it created. I simply wanted to share how Sugar at 12yrs old can still jump.
To be honest, I did not take many photos that day because I was a bit nervous for Sugar. I was not impressed by the set-up of the pool particularly the ramp. I found the ramp narrow and the steps were not as sturdy as I would like for Sugar’s weight.
Sugar being familiar with dock diving, she immediately knew that she needed to jump in order to retriever the toy. If you are new or trying out dock diving with your dog, remember these 5 Safety Tips …
1) It is very important to introduce your dog to the RAMP, exit ramp. If you do agility with your dog, you get familiarized with the course by walking. Same idea in dock diving,. Take your dog to the ramp and do a short retrieve into the pool from the ramp.
2) Safety GEAR: lifejacket/collar/leash – If you are doing dock diving in an indoor facility, it is recommended to wear a lifejacket even though your dog knows how to swim. If your dog gets hurt or injured you can easily help by using the handle on the lifejacket. For beginners, many uses a leash release + command to let their dog jump into the pool and retriever the toy. In events and competitions, dogs do not wear lifejackets.
3) Must have PATIENCE – Many dogs will immediately jump into ponds, lake, rivers, and ocean but a bit hesitant on pools. Provide confidence to your dog by throwing a toy in short distance for a couple of times. Build a momentum from there and always use happy exciting verbal commands. Be prepared to get wet and be in the water with your dog.
4) Don’t Over JUMP your dog! PAY ATTENTION to your Dog. For average dogs, dock diving is tiring. Take breaks between jumps and stop when you notice fatigue from your dog.
5) As a pet parent, CHECK the dock dive pool first and make sure you have knowledge about the faculty managing it. It’s is also a good idea to learn PET CPR.
I reserved the pool for 30 minutes but Sugar spent only 20 mins. She had lots of rest and leisurely swims in between. Have you tried dock diving with your dog?
Golden Woofs is participating and sharing these safety tips in the DogFenceDIY Safety Tips 2014 Round Up. Golden Woofs is being compensated for this post.