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Yamahopper

A lab that can,t swim.

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I got a 3 year old yellow lab that sinks. When he was young he junped off the dock and sank,i had to reach down and get him. He loves runing in the water and chasing balls but only neck deep. He is a little fat,but the lard should float. Any info or tips? I have been in the lake with him,i do not think he fears the water till his feet start leaving the bottom. My wife named him hunter,I am thinking wader.

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The only thing I can think of is are you bathing him on a regular basis?

We all know how labs have quite the oily coat and usually an odor to boot. Well, many folks take it upon themselves to bath their labs with dog shampoo. Well, as nasty as it is, I don't bath my dog once everything thaws until hunting is over. The oil in a lab's coat functions as a water deterrent and floatation. Washing them free of oil means they stay wet longer when they get out (and cold too during November). Also, since oil is less dense than water, it also helps them float.

Maybe not the case, just something to think about.

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Hey thanks for the reply. The sinker gets very few baths except for lakes and rivers. I have to admit this dog sheds hair all year long alot,maybe this is the problem? Seems to have a very thick coat all the time. I am still confused on this one,but we are beginers. any other ideas please!

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i had a lab-cross that could not swim. i had to get my neighbor & dog to go to the lake with me. My dog watched his dog and finally caught onto it and learned to love it.dont give up hope and good luck

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Thanks again, he did do the freeze thing. Maybe i panicked before the dog did. I am going to do the dog buddy thing at the river. There is allways 3 to 5 dogs he knows and i will bring them to a calm pool to see if he will catch on. Up north he stands next to a golden retreiver in the lake and looks at the sunfish just to be with him. He may have hope yet on the swim thing.

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As long as there is no soap used, a dip in a lake or river won't wash the oil out of their coats.

I guess I didn't ask about his jump off the dock I assume once he hit the water he panicked and splashed violently? You had said he sank...he didn't just freeze up did he?

I have a buddy with a cross that would never swim (same thing bigtrav mentioned)....until she saw my dog retrieving. Then slowly she tested her doggy paddle. At first dogs can be very inefficient at swimming. When they get nervous and think they need to keep their head way out of the water. Their front paws come out of the water and splash which in turn gets in their face which creates more panick. Is this what happened when he jumped in??

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I had a golden that lept off the dock when only a few months old. It was fall and the leaves on the water gave it the impression (to the dog atleast) it was land. The pup lept off the dock expecting to land on solid ground, instead it was floundering in water. Prior to that the dog was never in the water. It took a couple of years to break the dog from it's fear of water. However, it did become a fine water dog. It just took a while to get over that traumatic experience.

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I guess I am lucky. I let my pup play with a couple of teenagers when she was just a few weeks old. She was swimming on her own in short order and loving it.

Mw brother had a lab/setter cross that never did figure out the swimming game. He would follow you out 'til the water was belly deep, then stand on his hind legs and continue. Once the water was over his head, he would founder. Since he was not going to be for hunting, we never spent any time getting him to get it right. I imagine he would have learned had we spent the time.

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He just hasn't figured out that he also needs to use his hind legs to swim. The first summer with my first lab I had the same problem when her hind legs left the bottom she would panic and try to stand up. After the water warmed up and we took her to the beach with us and we were in the water with her swimming around her she got the idea and we would all her to us and she got braver and went on to be a awsome water dog, to the point were she would just go out and swim around for fun!!

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This past May, my female yellow lab, then 9 weeks old, bailed out of the boat. My buddy and I were out fishing on Big Cut Foot Sioux and she had her front paws haning over the side. My buddy and I both knew she was going in, so we went into shallow water and sure enough over she went. She swam a big circle and then came back to the boat. I lifted her in and wrapped her in my jacket as she got the "shiver's". She was content the rest of the day. This is my first dog, but what the other guy's say makes sense. Get your pooch around some "swimmers" and he/she should catch on.


bmc

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You know - they make doggie life preservers, and even some in a lovely shade of pink....
(snort!)

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