Poodles are the second most brainy and sensible dog breed after the Scottish Sheepdog. They are also known widely as ‘Caniche’ – a French word, which is based on two words Chien canard – that means “duck dog” (in the earlier times, used for hunting ducks). Also frequently known as the ‘Pudelhund’ – a German word, where pudel translates into “splash in water”, coincidentally relating to the word “puddle”. The origin, however, is quite disputable.
Albeit it is only a mere coincidence that the word “poodle” reminds us of the word “puddle”, it is very true that poodles enjoy swimming as much as they love to relish their swimming experience. How did Poodles adapt to their major ability to swim? As mentioned above, they were primarily used for waterbird hunting.
Now to answer the question, can Poodles swim? Poodles are certainly known for their playful qualities and it is no less than a fact that poodles, indeed, are great swimmers. As poodles make great swimmers and can also remember their experience of swimming, they tend to be very fond of swimming, even without the assistance of their owners.
In this article, we have tried to answer the most common questions concerning the capabilities of poodles to swim. It is very important to make sure that you do not push your dog into swimming to the point where it might become life-threatening. You must look out for your dog constantly when they are learning how to swim.
Are Poodles natural swimmers?
Most of the poodles are usually natural swimmers. Poodles are naturally built to swim. They have characteristic webbed feet and instead of multiple coats of fur, they only have a single coat. Because of the presence of excessive hair on their ankles, chest, and head, they can maintain the normal body temperature even while swimming in cold water.
All these physical traits make poodles great natural swimmers. But again, not all poodles have the natural ability to swim. But due to these traits, it becomes easier to train them.
There are three kinds of Poodles: the standard, toy, and miniature poodle. The standard poodle is the largest and also the oldest breed of poodles whereas the toy poodle is the smallest breed. Irrespective of their sizes, all these poodles are great natural swimmers with some variabilities. The standard poodles are very energetic. As a result, they can be trained to swim for several hours without them getting tired.
The miniature poodles are the most energetic, even if their size is fairly small. Unless you want them to chew out or scratch your furniture, doors, or plants, taking your miniature poodle out for a swim helps them free up a lot of energy built inside them.
The toy poodles, with some safety measures, also make great swimmers. However, this breed of poodles tends to wear out their energy faster than the other two types. Consequently, they get tired earlier and hence, cannot swim constantly for a long time. You might also want to take care that you do not bring your toy poodle into deep pools or lakes unless the poodle is highly trained.
Taking care of your Poodle around water
As mentioned above, although most poodles have a natural likelihood to swim, some poodles might just be the opposite. They might not be very fond of swimming, therefore, you must not push your dog into swimming thinking that it might have the ability to swim just like the other poodles. When taking them near the water for the first time, they should be under your constant supervision.
As a responsible owner, you must take care of any difficulty that might arise while trying to teach your poodle how to swim and you must look out for any signs of danger. Some poodles might take a while to get used to swimming, but that does not mean that you should lose your patience or give up.
How to train your Poodle to swim?
Though a majority of poodles are born to be natural swimmers, some might need the training to release their fear of water. Below are some steps and precautions about training your poodle to swim:
Do not be hasty
Bring your poodle close to the sight of water. Let your poodle act on its instincts. Do not rush, let your poodle allow you to do something as small as wetting its paws instead of putting it straight into the water.
Be your poodle’s best friend
We all love it when our best friends help us do something we are afraid of. The same applies to your poodle. Having its best owner by its side will encourage your poodle to go into the water as it trusts you. So go ahead, and take a dip into the water along with your poodle!
Begin the training in surface water
Taking your poodle directly into deep water is going to scare your pup. Try to take things slow and first train your poodle to swim in shallow water. Once you feel like it is ready to take in with the deep waters, you may go for it while providing constant supervision.
Praise your poodle
You might want to use some of the same tricks on your poodle that you use on dry land too. When your poodle accomplishes one thing, encourage it by giving it pats, treats and praises. This will motivate your poodle to go further.
Safety comes first
If you are taking your poodle into the water for the first time, make sure you buy a life vest for your poodle. Drowning incidents among dogs occur more frequently than we think and it is of utmost importance that we prioritize their safety as much as possible.
Poodles are great at being trained. They are graceful, loyal, highly intelligent, loving, and charming. They make great house pets. In addition to that, they are hypoallergenic and shed very less.
They are pretty great swimmers, as reviewed above, and hence, can make your swimming experience more fun and enjoyable!