There are so many pets, mostly dogs, who just LOVE the water. For example, labs, retrievers, and spaniels were originally bred to hunt game in the water. While their hunting days may be over, their love for water is still inherent.
Kids always get a good laugh when their dog dives into the pool with them and if the dog can swim, what harm is there really?
There’s been debate on whether or not the chlorine in your pool is safe for your pet. According to the American Kennel Club, “A dog’s eyes, nose and ears are more sensitive than a human’s and as such may be a tad more susceptible to the effects of chlorine.” Just like dogs drink out of the toilet bowl, they don’t discern what is “good” drinking water so discourage them from lapping it up.
How does your dog being in the pool affect your filter system? The go-to statistic is a dog in the pool is equivalent to about 50 people in the pool at one time. Think about that from a health perspective! That’s not to say your dog’s hair will damage your system but it will make it work harder.
What risks of infections exist for your family if your dog is an avid swimmer in your pool? The jury is still out on this one. Most waterborne illnesses like crypto are associated with transmission from people. If your dog has been vomiting, has diarrhea, or skin infections it’s best to keep them out of the pool to prevent any kind of infection to your family.
Just as you want to keep your children safer around the pool, especially when it’s not in use, you need to do the same for your pets. Pets are our family too! Using pool barriers, covers, and locks will help keep your dogs out of the pool when you’re not using it! And a swimming lesson for your dog couldn’t hurt. It’s a common misconception that all dogs know how to “doggy paddle.”
So, the answer? It’s up to you! The important thing is to keep your pet and your family safer around the pool.
*Good rules of thumb for your residential pools.