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Hi Everyone,
This is my first post, though I've been a passive absorber of all the wisdom in many threads for a while now. Our male golden, Summer, turned a year old a couple of weeks ago (pics attached). Barring some visits to the beaches in Half Moon Bay, Carmel, Santa Cruz, etc, we haven't been able to give our pup a swimming experience. Given that he comes from a line of fantastic swimmers, we want Summer to be a swimmer as well. In the presence of other dogs he will tentatively walk a little into the ocean waters and then promptly run away as the waves come in, indicating so far not big fan of the water. This might have been exacerbated by the fact that the waters have always been super cold when we've taken him this past fall and winter and we haven't really waded in ourselves as a result, just sort of relied on the doggie friends to coax him in. I was wondering if anyone in the Bay Area has found dog-friendly lakes where we can introduce Summer to swimming properly? There is one dog swimming center in Pacifica, CA, but it's far from where we live (Sunnyvale, CA) which makes it very hard to make it to their timings during the week (and they don't appear to have any weekend slots for new clients). Any suggestions will be helpful!
Thanks!
 

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Welcome! Summer's a good looking boy.

There are several members from the SF area, hopefully they will see your post and be able to give you some suggestions.

I live on the NC Coast, the surf here is strong, my guys have never liked swimming at the Main beaches. I am lucky enough to live less than a block from the Intercoastal Waterway, we have a small beach and the water is very calm, great for taking my boy swimming. I can let him run off leash too where I can't on the main beach.

Hope you find a place to take Summer.
 

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The best place to go which is also the closest would be the Delta, around the Discovery Bay Resort or Orwood Resort.

Its fresh water and only about an hour drive from where you live. The tricky part is to find a good place by car.

We have a boat, so its easy to take the dogs, find a quiet cove (with no boat traffic) and let the dogs swim.
If you dont have a boat, then its literally looking on the map on your phone, Near Discovery Bay Resort or Orwood Resort. and pulling off the side of the road, walking down and letting the dogs swim.

I see a bunch of people doing this & picnic/fishing all the time by car but, since Im on the boat, I cant really see what roads they are on. But the Delta spans hundreds of Miles, so its just a matter or doing some driving around and finding a good spot.


Other then that, its really Lake Tahoe - specifically Kiva Beach on south shore. Over the spring/summer, I take my dogs there to swim. Many times, I'll just do a day trip for them to be able to swim all afternoon. Then drive home. Tahoe when it isnt snowing is realistically only 3.5 hours away, so not too bad of a day trip for the pups. I bring beach chairs and an Umbrella and some food & just hang out for the day.
 

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Here is a picture of where Orwood & Discovery Bay are.

The 3 circles are areas where I think are accessible by car and are in areas that wouldnt have much boat traffic.
If I were going to bring my dogs swimming, Id try these 3 spots first.
 

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Hi Everyone,
This is my first post, though I've been a passive absorber of all the wisdom in many threads for a while now. Our male golden, Summer, turned a year old a couple of weeks ago (pics attached). Barring some visits to the beaches in Half Moon Bay, Carmel, Santa Cruz, etc, we haven't been able to give our pup a swimming experience. Given that he comes from a line of fantastic swimmers, we want Summer to be a swimmer as well. In the presence of other dogs he will tentatively walk a little into the ocean waters and then promptly run away as the waves come in, indicating so far not big fan of the water. This might have been exacerbated by the fact that the waters have always been super cold when we've taken him this past fall and winter and we haven't really waded in ourselves as a result, just sort of relied on the doggie friends to coax him in. I was wondering if anyone in the Bay Area has found dog-friendly lakes where we can introduce Summer to swimming properly? There is one dog swimming center in Pacifica, CA, but it's far from where we live (Sunnyvale, CA) which makes it very hard to make it to their timings during the week (and they don't appear to have any weekend slots for new clients). Any suggestions will be helpful!
Thanks!
Have you been to Steven's Creek? it has been a long time since I have been, but my dad and I used to take the dogs there when we were in the area (my parents live in Davis). If I'm remembering correctly, dogs had to be on lead, but we would let the dogs swim!

In the summer Lake Berryessa is amazing, far for you, but great hiking, kayaking, and other lake activities and super dog friendly!

I also think starting in slow moving water (lakes/reservoirs) with easy entry (aka not a pool that "drops") helps dogs build confidence in the water!

best of luck!
 

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When I adopted my first golden (he was 1.5 years old) in April 2000, I used to bring him down to Monterey from Morgan Hill (where I lived at the time). Charlie was interested in the water, but got knocked over by a wave and then refused to go in. We continued to play in the sand, then went home. We went back the following weekend, and another person and their dog were playing, Charlie started playing with the dog, and the other dog got him into the water and swimming :) He was a swimmer ever after! The beach in Monterey *was* dog friendly, which is why we went there.

There's a reservoir in Morgan Hill off Dunne Ave I used to bring him up to, until on one of our walks he jumped over a rattle snake; after that I only brought him to the parking area that had direct access to the water, no more hiking there for us. (I'm a well documented wuss).

I used to bring him to the dog-friendly beach in Santa Cruz, until he got caught swimming after a tennis ball near some very aggressive waves, almost feeling like it could be a rip tide - he barely escaped that; I was about to go in after him when he managed to get out of whatever that crazy churning was and get back to shore. I never felt good bringing him there again. It was the area over to the far left of the beach; I'm sure it's a safe area because it is dog-friendly, but that incident scared me so I avoided going there again.

Again, this was all a fairly long time ago when I lived in the Bay Area; I'm closer to Lake Folsom and Tahoe now and will be bringing our 5.5 month old pup up there after he gets his rattlesnake and lyme boosters next week (probably in May, just to be sure with the vax).

ps: Summer is gorgeous!!! Have fun finding new places to swim :)
 
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