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Thread: Water Suggestions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    South West WA
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    287

    Default Water Suggestions

    My lovely Kelpie LOVES her walks her walk path is the local river front and a small stretch onto the beach.
    I was wondering if anyone had any advise to get her swimming at the beach.
    I always take her ball and I have found that by throwing it in the river she will run no problems into the fresh water to get the ball no matter how deep. She even dunks her head under water to grab the ball.
    But as soon as we get to the actual beach she doesn't want to know the water. If I throw her ball in any deeper than her ankles she refuses to chase her ball and I have to retrieve it. I am guessing it is the waves putting her off the beach so I was wondering if there are any tricks I could try to help her go swimming at the beach.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    S.E. Subs Melbourne
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    57

    Default

    This may or may not be helpful but my son (3 yrs) is deathly afraid of the sea and will go no more than ankle deep, however, taken to the local pool he'll quite happily wade around in armpit deep water without a second thought.

    I'd assume that much like my son, your dog is fearful of the sheer expanse of the water and i'd imagine the best way to gain confidence would be regularly visiting the beach, possibly going in yourself and teasing the dog to want to come to you etc. Time, coaxing, patience and plenty of positive reinforcement.

    At the end of the day though, some dogs just aren't 'into' the sea i guess.

    HTH

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Adelaide
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    My dog loves all water, from the garden hose and sprinkler, to rivers, dams and the beach.

    some other dogs that are more wary, will follow her in. Sometimes by accident, ie they're playing chasing, mine goes in the water and the other dog follows - oops all wet now.

    It may be that your dog associates the smell and taste with feeling sick - some dogs first experience of seawater is to drink a lot of it.

    You could also pick a day that is going to be flat calm and see if that makes a difference.

    This website would help you pick which day.
    Seabreeze Wind & Weather Forecasts (Waves,Wind,Tides & Swell) for Kitesurfing, Kiteboarding, Fishing, Sailing, Boating, Windsurfing, Surfing, SUP & more

  4. #4

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    One time I went to see the horse whisperer (Monty Roberts) and he said one of the best ways to make an animal want to do something is try and stop it from doing what you want ie reverse psychology
    I've used it many times on horses and dogs to make them want to do things they aren't very keen on.
    Sometimes making an animal think something is not allowed makes them desire it much more.
    Rather than dragging the dog into the water, try pushing it back out and gradually sneak into the water further each day.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Perth, WA
    Posts
    1,257

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    When I got my dog she was afraid of the swash at the beach. Gradually she got a little braver and would get her feet wet. She didn’t want to swim - she just didn’t like the shelf that drops off ie. Not being able to touch the bottom.

    I ended up getting her swimming by taking treats and coaxing her into the water, and getting her to hang around that spot just before the bottom drops off. Then I held the treat out further and further so her feet would have to leave the ground just for a second or two. So I was building up her confidence, and eventually she had her first swim!

    The whole time I was teaching her to swim I looked and sounded like a mad woman. Clapping and cheering/encouraging her on and making a big fuss when she stepped out of her comfort zone.

    To this day she still won’t just jump straight into the ocean and swim. She needs her toy as motivation and I need to throw it out just a little way at first, to get her confidence up. But Take her to a lake, and she will walk straight in and swim after the ducks!

    So in short, I would take your dog when it’s very clam and as flat as possible, those waves are scary. Take treat/toys (whatever motivates her) and be patient. I’m sure she will get there eventually

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    South West WA
    Posts
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    thanks everyone. will try all of those. The hardest part is our beach has perfect conditions for kite surfing all year round so flat days aren't very often LOL.
    the main reason I would love for her to swim in the ocean is beacuse I have found that when I can get her coverred salt water it seems to help with her fleas

  7. #7

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    Salt is fantastic for skin conditions, especially ones like hot spots. It can be very drying though so you need to make sure you rinse all the salt water off when you get home.

    Mine aren't big water fans but one of them doesn't mind a dip in the shallows of the creek. She HATES the beach though, I think it's the waves that she finds scary and the loud noise.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Adelaide
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    dragoncharm, your best bet for calm weather is first thing in the morning between the land breeze and the sea breeze or afternoons when northerlies are forecast (inland) because they cancel out sea breezes. But I imagine you are close to the roaring forties. I have seen dead calm on the southern coast of Australia (the bite) so it happens.

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