Dogs And Swimming Pools: Safety And Maintenance

A refreshing pool can tempt even your four-legged companion on a hot summer day. If your dog likes to swim, it's usually okay to let him in the pool, as long as you take steps to avoid damage and maintenance concerns.

Pup-Friendly Pool Design

Not all pools are designed for dog use. Those with vinyl liners are likely to develop leaks from the stress of your dog's nails. If you plan to let your pet swim, a concrete or fiberglass pool is less likely to suffer any or to develop leaks. You can further prevent scratches and damage to the pool's finish, while also making it safer for your dog, by installing a pool ramp to make entering and exiting the pool easier. If you have a walkout pool, a ramp won't be necessary.

Dog Preparation

Dog hair can quickly clog a pool filter, leading to necessary pump repairs. Brushing your dog and keeping them groomed will minimize the amount of hair that's shed during swim time. If you have a breed with thick hair, a groomer can thin the hair for the summer months. Not only will this help keep your pool clean, it will also keep your pup cooler.

Nails are another concern, so keep them trimmed if you plan to let your dog in the pool. Long nails can scratch the finish on your pool's liner, which will require resurfacing. Nails also pose a safety danger because they can scratch other swimmers, leading to both injury and the chance of infection.

Daily Maintenance Pointers

You can minimize repairs and cleaning to your pump and filtration system by cleaning out the skimmer and pump filters each time after your dog has been swimming. A single dog places the same amount of stress on the filtering system as several people, mainly because of the amount of hair that's shed during swimming. Keeping the filters clean ensures water continues to circulate properly and the pump doesn't break down.

You can use both chlorine and salt water systems safely with a dog, but you must manage the chemical balance carefully. Daily water testing is usually necessary if you let your dog in the pool, otherwise the water can quickly become unbalanced.

Going for the Deep Clean

Weekly professional cleaning can be a good idea if your dog swims. Your maintenance technician will make sure all skimmers, filters and pipes are clear of debris. They will also help keep the water in balance and monitor the entire system for any stress or damage, so you can repair small issues before they become big problems.

Allowing your dog in the pool is similar to having a pool with children. It's best to keep them out of the water when they are unsupervised. With a little extra care, your dog can swim safely and your pool will survive without any damage. Contact a swimming pool repair company for more tips on maintaining a pool used by a dog.