It is always fun to see your dog jump in the pool and swim around with his funny “dog paddle”. We throw balls in the water for him to catch or see how high he will jump as he plummets into the water. We get him all excited around the pool through our encouragement and direction.
Now, the entire family is in the pool playing and having a good time. Then, all of a sudden and out of nowhere, we get a “doggie missile” vaulting at us from the side of the pool. For some strange reason, they always like to “come at us” from the back and the first moment we realize what is happening is when we have their claws scratching our back.
Our dog means no harm and is only trying to play. Unfortunately, a crazed dog going nuts in a pool full of people is normally not a good thing. It is not easy or safe to have small children in the pool when the seventy-pound Golden Retriever is splashing, pawing, and nudging them.
The problem is that we taught them to do all of this when we encouraged them to be crazy around the pool when we were alone with them. We need to retrain them not to be crazy around the pool. This can be a very difficult thing.
It is often easy to teach our dog to do something such as sit, come, or walk. It is often much harder to teach them not to do something that was previously acceptable. Proper behavior modification training is needed for you to be successful.
Robin and I have a great method that has worked with us when we had a very active Springer Spaniel that loved the water and loved to be a part of “anything pool”. Please take a moment to read our dog training blog titled “How Should I Play with My Dog in the Pool”.