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Category

Pool Safety For Pets

Your backyard pool is a great place to stay cool and make memories with your family and, if they enjoy it, your pets.

Whether or not your cat or dog enjoys swimming, it’s important to have safety measures in place to prevent accidents. An estimated 5000 family pets drown every year in swimming pools. The silver lining is that swimming pool accidents are preventable with these precautions.

Can My Pet Swim In The Pool?
Supervised swimming in a chlorinated pool is a relatively safe activity for pets. Short-term exposure to chlorine is usually not an issue, though your pet should not be allowed to drink freely from the pool. They should also be rinsed afterwards to prevent them from ingesting chlorine by licking it off their paws and coat.

Keep in mind that some pets simply hate to swim. Cats and dogs are equipped with the mammalian diving reflex, which means their body reacts with built-in safety measures when they’re immersed in water. Your pet will automatically start paddling when they enter the water, allowing them to stay afloat for a short period of time, but this does not indicate that they enjoy swimming.

If your pet immediately tries to exit the pool or clings to a trusted human, they most likely don’t like to swim. Some water-phobic pets eventually learn to love swimming with the help of treats and toys, but it’s best to avoid forcing your pet to swim if they are fearful.

If your pet does enjoy swimming, always supervise them. Also, teach them how to safely enter and exit the pool. You may need to install a specialized ramp and teach your pet to use it if they cannot exit the pool without help.

Pool Safety Precautions
It’s imperative that your swimming pool has multiple layers of protection to keep your pet safe, even if they don’t swim. Pets that don’t swim may still enter the pool area in pursuit of prey or a toy.

Your pool should have a gate around the perimeter to prevent your pets from accessing it. Small pets may squeeze under or between panels of the gate, so you may need to use additional chicken wire to keep them out.

Remember that a gate is useless if your family members tend to leave it open. A self-closing, self-latching gate keeps your pets safe.

You can use technology to alert you if your pet enters the pool area. Many home surveillance cameras can sound an alarm or send a notification to your phone if motion is detected in a specified area. There are also collar attachments that link up with an alarm system to alert you if your pet bypasses the pool gate.

A pool safety net or cover provides yet another layer of protection. While many people only cover their pool in the winter, it’s not a bad idea to cover it when it’s not in the use through the summer. Not only can you prevent accidents, but some covers can also retain heat, reduce evaporation, and prevent debris, bugs, and wildlife from entering.