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Pets and Pools: Keeping Your Dog Safe

Dog Playing In Pool
Having a pool in your backyard can be a great source of fun and refreshment for the entire family, especially in the summertime. But is a pool safe for your outdoor pet? Not all animals are good swimmers, and ingesting pool water can be dangerous for animals as well.
To make sure your summer is full of fun and free of danger, keep these tips in mind.
Put a Fence Around Your Pool
One of the safest things to do with your pool is put up a fence. This will keep not only your dog safe but smaller children as well. There are a variety of pool fences to choose from if you're worried about bars and grates obscuring the pool. Don't leave chairs near the fence, as a dog could use this as a springboard to jump over into the water. Make sure any gaps in the fence are covered.
Supervision
There's a reason that pools have lifeguards. Supervision is the best way to keep anyone - not just your dog - safe. If your dog likes to cool off like you do, keep an eye on them while they're swimming.
Don't assume a dog paddling in the water is doing fine; dogs can tire and drown just like any person can. Be on the lookout for a pet who's coughing or choking on water so that you can prevent small problems from turning tragic.
Other Pool Safety Precautions
It might be beneficial to cover your pool with a pool net or dome for an added level of safety. Make sure also to avoid leaving tempting toys out of the pool.
If your pet won't stay out of the pool and you're worried about them, consider installing a pool pet alarm. A small device attaches to the dog's collar and activates an alarm if they get too close to the pool.
Buy a Pet Vest
For a dog that is a poor swimmer, you can purchase a life vest or life jacket. This device is obviously not a complete substitute for supervision, but the bright colors on the vest will help the dog be more visible. And just like with human life vests, a vest will give the dog more buoyancy to keep them afloat when they're playing in the water.
Keep Chlorine Tablets Away from Dogs
Luckily, the chlorine found in pools doesn't cause serious issues for pets if they happen to swallow a little water - but the amount can make a difference. A dog or cat might exhibit minor gastrointestinal irritation, red eyes, or itchy skin if they spend an extended amount of time in the water.
The concentrated chlorine tablets pose the biggest danger from pool chemicals. Make sure to keep chlorine tablets out of reach of your pets.
Know Your Dog
Some dogs are better swimmers than others. You should do some research on your dog's breed to know how closely you should watch them. For example, poodles are such good swimmers their name actually means to splash in German. You also probably don't have to worry as much about Irish and English setters, Labrador retrievers, and the appropriately named Irish water spaniels and Portuguese water dogs.
Also, keep things like your dog's age in mind. Older dogs are likely to tire more quickly in water or not swim as well, but you may be able to teach a younger dog dog some simple swimming techniques and rules.
It's great to have a pool from a company like Mr. Pool Inc. this summer, and if you can find some peace of mind that your pet will be safe, you'll be able to relax in the water without worry. Review these tips with your family, and you and your pet are sure to have an enjoyable time keeping cool. For more safety tips or supplies, contact us today.