It is a mistake to believe that all dogs have a good “swimming gene”, they are not all born with a natural ability to swim.
Dogs generally fall into one of these categories when it comes to swimming: natural swimmers, those who just are not built for the water and should stay away from it and dogs who can be thought to swim. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule.
Some dogs love water, others shy away from it and although it will be quite general we can name their breeds in a list. The rankings in this article are based on the opinions of dog owners and veterinarians who share their opinion on dogs and swimming.
Do You Let Your Dog Swim?
The majority of owners let their dogs swim, if they like water and when the conditions are safe. Dogs that enjoy the water should not be stopped from doing so, but there are some things to keep in mind. Most dog owners prefer to let their dog swim in the pool as they think this is the safest option. Others do not mind if their dogs swim in open water. Do you let your dog swim and where?
Dog Breeds Who Love Water
Some dogs just love splashing around in the water anywhere they find it. They can equally enjoy a kiddie pool or a dog-friendly beach, they are happy with any option to swim. We have gathered some opinions about which dog breeds love water and we are curious if you agree.
- Labrador Retriever
- Golden Retriever
- Portuguese Water Dog
- American Water Spaniel
- Irish Water Spaniel
- Chesapeake Bay Retriever
- Curly-Coated Retriever
- Flat-Coated Retriever
- Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
Dog Breeds Who Hate Water
Not every dog likes water, some prefer to stay away. The dogs least likely to dive right in belong to the small dogs group like the Chihuahua which tops our list. Let’s see what other breeds shy away from water.
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Bichon Frise
- Shih Tzu
We know you would love to see your doggy paddling in the water or have a companion to play with in the pool, but some dogs just do not like to get wet. Of course, this is a generalised statement and it depends on every dog individually. Some canines have gradually learned to like water because they have been exposed to it from an early age or their owner has trained them to enjoy the experience.
There are also dogs who adore swimming but do not like to take baths. This is a whole new topic which we may discuss in another article. Fortunately, with a little time and patience, many dogs learn to swim and to enjoy bath time.
Does your dog love or hate water? Does our ranking match your experience?