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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-22-2009, 04:53 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Swimming

When I go swimming with Seattle our 8 year old Golden, my wife gets in and then I get in Seattle swims towards me and then panics, why does he do this? Can a golden tread water? John
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-22-2009, 04:58 AM
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I can't answer why he panics, but yes they can tread water, my Ollie holds himself in one place waiting for a decent sized wave for him to body surf on
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-22-2009, 09:51 AM
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I think treading water must be an acquired skill, because lots of Goldens can only really go forwards without stopping.

Some dogs try to "save" people who are swimming because they don't realize that you're fine. Is there any way you can show him that you're safe and fine or give him a "job" that doesn't involve coming straight at you? If he's a fetcher, you could throw a ball a few feet, and have him bring it back to you in the water, then you can kind of direct him around you in a circle, take the ball, and throw it again. We used to do that just for fun with my older dog because he loved to fetch and he'd get you with his front nails if you didn't teach him to go around when he returned the ball to a swimmer.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-22-2009, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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I know that Seattle is 8 years old can he actually be taught something new? What kind of a job would you recommend?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-22-2009, 12:09 PM
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Old dogs learn new tricks really well. The adage is so completely wrong.

The easiest thing to do is build on something he already likes. Does he enjoy fetching tennis balls in the water? If so, I'd teach him how to bring them back to a swimmer without scratching. It's not hard to teach him to swim to an extended hand and bump the ball into it. Fetch is a game that triggers a dog's working ability on a very deep level.
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