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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know it may seem silly but Cherry (foster turned failure) won't swim. She's a year old and likes the water but when she gets chest deep she gets a little scared and backs off. Our three year old Haley does great..jumps right in and off she goes. Cherry's been in the pool while other dogs are in there and I thought that would help but she won't go past her chest. It isn't my pool but the dog park pool so people are not allowed in it but I have waded deep enough to try to encourage her. Here's a few things I've tried so please let me know if I am missing something:

1. Tried throwing favorite toys in the shallow end to encourage her to play...nothing is favorite enough to wade out in the water past her chest.

2. I tried getting in with her past her chest.."no, mom you can drown I'm not doing it" attitude from her.

3. Tried other dogs and tried only Haley in the pool to get her to swim.

I know some dogs just don't take to water but she really looks like she wants to she just does not have the confidence she can. What can I do to encourage her to just do it?
 

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I would take her to a lake or somewhere where you can go in with her and holding her, go into deeper water. Let her go as you still have arms under her to make her feel secure.
 

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Why do you consider her a foster turned failure?
I think she means she was a foster dog, but she was a "foster failure" so she kept her.

Our Bodie would not swim until he was over two years old. On Dog Whisperer, I saw Cesar Milan taking a dog in the pool on a collar and leash, so I put Bodie's collar and leash on and he went right in! It was amazing. We'd been trying to get him to go in the water for over a year (no leash) and he'd refused. I think Bodie felt safer because he was attached to me. Now he loves to swim.
 

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I wonder if she had a bad water experience w/her prior owner. :(

I don't have any good advice, but yeah, you could try leashing her like Brenda said.
 
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Shall we change Labrador's for a week ???

No, iam just kidding ;)

Try to make him/her enthousiastic with playing, and go to water that's not that deep ...

Deep enough to get the belly wet, and then .. i hope for you .. that the swimming wil start ;)

But what ever you do, dont force them to swim, that may end up with a Labrador who doesnt like swimming at all! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
bibber said:
Why do you consider her a foster turned failure?
I think she means she was a foster dog, but she was a "foster failure" so she kept her.

Our Bodie would not swim until he was over two years old. On Dog Whisperer, I saw Cesar Milan taking a dog in the pool on a collar and leash, so I put Bodie's collar and leash on and he went right in! It was amazing. We'd been trying to get him to go in the water for over a year (no leash) and he'd refused. I think Bodie felt safer because he was attached to me. Now he loves to swim.
That's what I meant by calling her a foster failure. She was a foster and I failed to find her another home. ;D

I was just trying to keep it short and sweet. I'll try this method and see if I can make any progress..sounds like a good idea.

mitziandjudysmom said:
I would take her to a lake or somewhere where you can go in with her and holding her, go into deeper water. Let her go as you still have arms under her to make her feel secure.
I may try this at the beach but being from Florida I am myself leary of the lakes with the gators in them. A calm day at the beach when the waves aren't crashing all over the place could make for a nice swim.
 
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A dog is never a failure! :-[

You can teach him or her "things" until he or she die's ;)

So a failure ... nah, neh .. i wont put it that way :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
zoesmom said:
I wonder if she had a bad water experience w/her prior owner. :(
That thought did cross my mind but she's gone from being completely terrified of the hose and water in general to hopping right in the pool as long as it is the shallow end. I wouldn't force her to go in, I know that would do more damage than good but she wants to so bad. I just don't know how to help her along. I'm thinking I am going to have to get in that dang pool at the park. I know I'm going to look like an idiot but I just have a feeling that would really help her get her confidence she can do it if I am standing right there.

Felix said:
Try to make him/her enthousiastic with playing, and go to water that's not that deep ...

Deep enough to get the belly wet, and then .. i hope for you .. that the swimming wil start ;)

But what ever you do, dont force them to swim, that may end up with a Labrador who doesnt like swimming at all! ;)
This is where we are at now. A few months ago the pool alone freaked her out. She use to tug at Haley to not get in it at all like she was trying to warn her. Happy go lucky Haley is like "hey kid..it's just the pool..chill out". But now Cherry will get in up to her belly and stick her whole face under the water and just walk around with her head under water. Cherry stands right at the drop off from the shallow end to the deep end and bats her paws like she really wants to do it but she's not sure if she can. I'm going to try the leash first and if that doesn't work then I'll just get in with her and we'll see what happens.
 

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I have one lab (Neo - rescue) who we can't keep out of the water. Our other lab (Cosmo) will only wade in as far as his paws will reach. We introduced him to the water when he was a pup (in the fall) and he never had any traumatic experiences. The following summer he would not go in the water. We have tried bringing him out on his leash, my husband has carried him out and Cosmo immediately swims back to shore. We have thrown his favorite toys only to see them float away. I just think that some dogs don't like to swim and I have one of them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Felix said:
A dog is never a failure! :-[

You can teach him or her "things" until he or she die's ;)

So a failure ... nah, neh .. i wont put it that way :p
I guess I confused some of you with my foster failure term. She was a foster but I adopted her so I was the foster failure. I'd never call my dogs failures. If they don't get something I want them to do I failed not them. Love my girls way too much to even think about calling them failures! ;D Hard heads, yes. Biligerent, yes. Daddy's girls, oh yeah but never failures.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Jen said:
I have one lab (Neo - rescue) who we can't keep out of the water. Our other lab (Cosmo) will only wade in as far as his paws will reach.
And this may be the case with Cherry but I want to be sure. If she doesn't want to swim no big deal. I just see her trying to and want to help her along if she chooses to do so. I'm sorry but I did giggle when I saw "we've thrown his favorite toys to see them float away". But I've fished a few out of the pool so you can giggle at me too.
 

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Well this was Ty's first swim yesterday...he wasn't so sure about it at first. I'd kinda lead him in with his collar and he'd pull and tug away and run out of the water. So I started throwing his tennis ball in the field, to get him in the retrieving mode...then i threw it into a little shallow area of the pond. At first he slammed on the brakes, but wanted the ball so bad so he kinda put his paws in a little and grabbed the ball and got the heck outa there. (see picture)



So I threw it in the same place over and over and pretty soon he was just bounding right on into the water to get it. So i started throwing it farther and farther out...the first time it was too far for him to reach it caught him off gaurd and tried to "bound" and jump his way back on the shore. Soon thereafter I threw it noticably farther and he just jumped right in..and as soon as he started swimming he just loved it and went back in several times having a ball.



So, I'd suggest what some of the others did..wading out there and just holding her while she starts to dog paddle then releasing. Or the leash idea...thats a good one. Good luck!
 
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HaleyCherry07 said:
Felix said:
A dog is never a failure! :-[

You can teach him or her "things" until he or she die's ;)

So a failure ... nah, neh .. i wont put it that way :p
I guess I confused some of you with my foster failure term. She was a foster but I adopted her so I was the foster failure. I'd never call my dogs failures. If they don't get something I want them to do I failed not them. Love my girls way too much to even think about calling them failures! ;D Hard heads, yes. Biligerent, yes. Daddy's girls, oh yeah but never failures.
Oke, it's clear now! 8)
 

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Sometimes you have to wait until the water is warmer. Sometimes you have to take the pup in the water with you. I got Grace used to water by taking her in a pool with me in my arms. It really boosted her confidence.

This was Grace at 4 months....it also helped that she was a summer puppy!
 

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Ten minutes before you have to leave to go do something important put her besides the pool and tell her she does not have time to go in. If she is anything like mine, she will go in the pool
 

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I wish I knew--Timber has NEVER liked to swim. We would take her and my dads two labs and Willow out, and Willow would jump right in with the boys, but Timber just looked at them like they were crazy. Now that we are near the ocean its the same thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
JeffG your pics of Ty's first swim are great! He looks like a pro!

Lab Dad said:
Ten minutes before you have to leave to go do something important put her besides the pool and tell her she does not have time to go in. If she is anything like mine, she will go in the pool
True...very true ;D
 
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