Can Goldendoodles Swim? Best Ways To Introduce Goldendoodles To Water
If you love the outdoors and want a dog, you probably should look for dog breeds that love nature and water as much as you.
Goldendooodles (aka Groodles) are a super popular Poodle Mix breed between the Poodle and Golden Retriever.
So can Goldendoodles swim?
Yes, Goldendoodles like to swim, they are bred from two different breeds of water-loving dogs. They keep their swimming ability and enthusiasm. From boating to lakes, pools, and the beach– Goldendoodles love the water.
Introducing Goldendoodles to Swimming
Goldendoodles tend to love water, but you cannot assume that your Goldendoodle knows how to swim immediately.
Like introducing any new concept to a dog, the best results are achieved if you take puppy steps. Slowly introduce your Goldendoodle to the water.
Goldendoodles tend to love water, but an exception is sometimes bathtime. You need to have a top Goldendoodle appropriate shampoo or you will end up with a smelly Goldendoodle! See why Goldendoodles can sometimes stink, and then check out the Best 6 Goldendoodle shampoos reviewed and tested.
Some slow initial introductions for a Goldendoodle puppy can include
- Play with a hose in the backyard
- Fill up a kids pool with water and let your Goldendoodle hop in and out or splash around
- This need to be a hard shell kids pool, soft plastic tends to fall victim to Goldendoodle puppy claws
- Take your Goldendoodle for an initial relaxed visit to a dog beach and let them play in the waves, or at least near the waves
Dogs are very clever, and Goldendoodles are particularly smart. Goldendoodle are intelligent and highly trainable. This makes it easier to successfully introduce them to water. Build their confidence slowly over time for the best results.
Swimming is in the family remember, both parent breeds Poodles and Golden Retrievers were originally used as hunting dogs. They were bred specifically to help hunt water birds like ducks! Genetically both breeds have a strong affinity for the water, you just need to introduce it in the correct way.
The sensation of swimming and exposure to water scenarios throws an awfully large amount of brain and physical stimulus at your dog though. It can be overwhelming at first. Take time for the sounds, smells, sensation, and weightlessness of swimming to be accepted.
Safety for Goldendoodles That Swim
Just like humans, even the strongest dog swimmer can get into trouble. Goldendoodles love swimming but there are dangers and situations that you need to be mindful of.
You need to prepare yourself and your dog for swimming.
- Ensure there are enter and exit points easily avaialble for yoru dog (even at the beach)
- Identify hazards (there are some you may not expect0
- Take frequent breaks
- Consider safety measures
Consideration 1: Entry and Exit Points
For all types of swimming, your dog needs to be able to easily enter exit the water on its own terms.
Goldendoodles will self-regulate and take a timeout if they are feeling overwhelmed or tired. Dogs get better at this as they get older. For puppies (and also very old dogs) enforce timeouts and rest times to prevent dangerous over-exhaustion.
For a lake or a beach, just ensure your dog can get out of the water without assistance. Show them the entry and exit point a few times.
For pools, it is vitally important that the entry and exit place or ladder are shown to the dog many, many times. Dogs can lose spatial awareness and struggle to find steps or ladders, particularly when they are submerged.
Consideration 2: Identify Hazards
Dogs should only swim under supervision. Do not let your dog swim alone, ever. Full stop. Ensure that areas of water, lakes, or pools are restricted access for your dog when left alone.
Goldendoodle LOVE water and some will go and play in water solo if given the chance. IF at all possible, deny them this chance. Then give them extra playtime once you are around to supervise!
Hazards in a pool setting include chemicals or cleaning equipment that your dog might sniff or eat.
Hazards when taking a puppy to the beach or lake are a little more complex. You can see this detailed post explaining everything you need to know and do before taking your puppy to the beach.
Essentially, be mindful of
- Sea life (like jelly fish and rotten fish)
- Garbage left by other beach goers
- Fishing equipment like lines and hooks
If at the beach or river you will also need to be mindful of currents, tidal flow, underwater hazards, and debris. Also, check the quality of the water. If you would not jump in yourself, it is a safe bet not to let your Goldendoodle.
After swimming be sure to check the paws of your dog. Goldendoodle paws can become damaged fairly easily by hazards or even dog sunburn. Troubles with the paws can see your Goldendoodle licking, chewing, or biting its paws.
Consideration 3: Take Frequent Breaks
The warmer months are such a fun time to explore nature and enjoy the beaches, pools, and lakes! You do need to be mindful of the signs of over-exhaustion, sunburn, or heat stroke in your Goldendoodle.
Signs of heat exhaustion LINK can include
- Excessive/rapid panting and drooling
- Coordination problems and difficult walking
- Vomiting and or diarrhea
If any of these three signs of dog heat exhaustion occur, take a timeout and cool down your dog. If they persist it is time to head home immediately. Hydrate your Puppy and monitor them closely for improvement.
Another reason to take frequent breaks when you are swimming with your Goldendoodle is that dogs can actually get sunburn.
Lighter coats of Goldendoodle will be more prone to sunburn than darker coats. There are actually dog sunscreens available, but you should not use human sunscreen unless it is specifically dog friendly. Many human sunscreens have chemicals that can cause harm.
- Protects from Sun
- Skin and coat conditioner
- Aroma Therapy
- Non-greasy and non-oily Solution
- Only FDA Compliant Pet Sunscreen
See our dog and puppy sunburn article for preventative tips and to learn what to do if your dog is sunburnt.
A tent or awning will provide excellent temporary cover for a doggy break. A large shady tree to rest under is another great option.
Consideration 4: Safety Equipment
If you are boating or your dog isn’t an expert swimmer, get a personal floatation device.
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These life jackets are form-fitting, help with buoyancy, and are typically reflective or brightly colored.
What is even better is that most Goldendoodle appropriate life vest or floatation devices can double as a temporary harness. This means the dog can be safely leashed while wearing it.
They also tend to have handles, which makes grabbing and moving your dog in the water easier. This helps if there is unexpected danger, or some kids swim too close. Goldendoodles are great with kids, but can get startled by strangers in swimming situations.
Goldendoodle Grooming After Swimming
If you do let your Goldendoodle swim, you need to be all over two elements of grooming. The experts agree that you need to start grooming your Goldendoodle puppy from around 5-6 months of age.
Whether it is pool water or saltwater, a thorough rinse-off is essential as soon as possible after the swim is over.
Get any chemicals, dirt, sand or bacteria off your dog ASAP. Be mindful to wash deeply to remove sand or grit that might be caught under a collar, harness or safety floatation device.
After a big session, you need to consider washing and shampooing your Goldendoodle. The best Goldendoodle shampoos are natural, protect the oils of the coat, and contain moisture (typically delivered through aloe, coconut rough, or oatmeal).
We reviewed and tested the 6 Best Goldendoodle Shampoos here.
The other thing you need to consider after your Goldendoodle swims is their ears.
Groodles inherit many wonderful traits from the Poodle – but the narrow ear canals filled with hair are an issue. Activities like swimming can lead to dirt, wax and bacteria build-up.
It is quite simple to clean your Goldendoodles ears at home, you just need a basic ear cleaning solution. If your dog swims often, you may need to do this once every week or so in the warmer months. Otherwise, wait for there to be build up before cleaning.
Simple ear cleaning solutions are cost-effective and easy to use.
My Goldendoodle Does Not Like To Swim…
Even though most Goldendoodles will take to water like fish – not every Goldendoodle will love to swim.
Gradual, positive exposure will get all but the most stubborn Goldendoodles to learn to love splashing around with you.
Sometimes dogs can have had a traumatic experience with water. Dogs who have been through this will need positive reinforcement and time to learn to return to swimming.
Don’t despair if you are one of the minority who has a Goldendoodle that does not seem to like the water. With persistence and patience, you will get there!
If it is too cold to swim with your Goldendoodle, check out this MASSIVE list of 35 indoor activities and games to do with your dog. being stuck inside does not have to be boring!
FAQ about Can Goldendoodles Swim
Are Goldendoodles water dogs?
Yes! Goldendoodles are water dogs that love to swim. They like the beach, boating, rivers, lakes and the ocean. Goldendoodles can safely swim in most pools. Getting your Goldendoodle away from water is sometimes the biggest challenge!
Do Mini Goldendoodles swim?
Yes! All sizes of Goldendoodle can swim. The endurance and time that a miniature, toy or teacup Goldendoodle can swim is less than larger dogs. But mini Goldendoodle like the water and can be safely introduced to pools, beaches, lakes and boating.
Can Goldendoodles Swim In Pools
Goldendoodle can safely swim in most swimming pools. You do need to be mindful that the dog does not drink the water. Ensure the chemical levels are safe for humans and dogs too. Swimming with dogs can complicate pool maintenance. Despite this most owners with pools swim with their Goldendoodles.
Conclusions About Can Goldendoodles Swim
If you are looking for an active dog breed that loves the water – you really can’t go wrong with a Goldendoodle. The question shouldnt be “Can Goldendoodles swim?” it should be “How do I get my Goldendoodle to STOP swimming”
Other Poodle mix breeds like the Bernedoodle also love to swim.
Important Goldendoodle swimming further reading
- 7 Things you need to know BEFORE taking your puppy to the beach
- 6 BEST Goldendoodle Shampoos Tested and Reviewed
- Why Won’t My Goldendoodle Stop Barking?
Or for something fun check out our super list of actually good Star Wars dog names.