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Do Border Collies Like Water?

by Lucy

It is a well-known fact that Border Collies were bred for working and herding flocks on farms. These dogs are masters at their original jobs. But, in recent years, Border Collies have become popular as domestic pets. You’ll find that these intelligent creatures make loyal and faithful companions too. Border Collies do as well in the country as they fare in cities.

But, many animal lovers wonder if Border Collies like water and love to swim. After all, who doesn’t want to head to the beach on a hot, sunny day and play fetch with their best friend? There’s no leaving your furbaby behind, is there? So, without further ado, let’s delve into the matter of Border Collies and water.

Do Border Collies like water? Most Border Collies don’t mind water. Many of them seem to love baths as much as they love to run in the water on the beach. Border Collies are often trained as search and rescue dogs and required to swim into deep water to help people swim to land.

Yet, many pet guardians claim that their pooch seems to be afraid of water. Your Border Collie’s reaction to water differs from dog to dog and your dog’s personal history with water. So, let’s dive a little deeper!

Do Dogs Like Water Naturally?

The affinity for water in canines varies from dog to dog. Many dog breeds, such as the Pugs and Bulldogs, do not make good swimmers.

Many people assume that dogs naturally love water. Yet, nothing could be further from the truth. Many dogs love water so long as they have their feet touching the ground. But, when some dogs see large and deep bodies of water, they are terrified.

On the other hand, some dogs hate to shower but aren’t reluctant to jump into a lake and swim with their humans. Dogs, just like humans, are individuals.

If your dog has had a bad experience with water in its puppyhood, you may be sure that your dog will not enjoy being close to water. Conversely, if your pup has always had fun with its human family being around water, it will relish playing with or around water.

Do Border Collies Like To Swim?

Swimming is an amazing activity that helps increase muscle mass and prevent arthritis and other age-related problems. Swimming for dogs is a low-impact activity that reduces strain on the muscles. It keeps your fur baby fit. There are even vets that recommend swimming for dogs after certain procedures for faster recovery. 

It is a well-known fact that all dogs have the innate ability to paddle in the water. But, that doesn’t mean that all dogs then have the aptitude to swim well. Many dog breeds such as Pugs and Bulldogs are brachycephalic with short snouts and flat faces, making them bad swimmers.

Also, many breeds like the Dachshund or Corgi, with their elongated bodies and short legs, don’t do too good at swimming either. The Basset Hound isn’t suited to swimming as their long, floppy ears are prone to ear infections when water enters their ear canal. 

Fortunately, the Border Collie does not have any natural impediments that stop them from becoming adept at swimming. These vivacious beasts can swim for as long as twenty minutes at a stretch in deep water. Many Border Collies make champion swimmers. 

Why Is Swimming A Good Idea For Your Border Collie?

As mentioned earlier, swimming is a fantastic workout that will help your dog have leaner muscles and a stronger body. Yet, that isn’t the only benefit of helping your Collie learn how to swim. You see, Collies are prone to obesity, diabetes, and heart conditions. Teaching your fur baby how to swim will keep it fit and prevent several health concerns. 

Furthermore, Collies are very active animals that do develop behavioral issues if they aren’t constantly occupied. Border Collies do exceptionally well in environments with a proper routine.

If you cannot channel your dog’s high energy levels and inbred facility for structure, your Border Collie will happily indulge in chewing on your furniture or shoes. They mainly seem to enjoy ripping cushions apart when they are bored.

Additionally, Border Collies have double coats of fur. Now, out in the open on farms where the temperature, as well as the pollution levels, are relatively low, your dog will do just fine.

But, as a pet in your house in the city where the temperatures are soaring, your Collie’s body is also likely to become overheated. Swimming is the ideal solution to keep your Border Collie cool. 

How To Help Your Border Collie Like Water?

There is a strong probability that your Border Collie will love being close to water and swimming. But, you need not worry if your fur baby isn’t particularly fond of swimming either. You see, dogs are brilliant at picking up skills. And border Collies are especially a marvel at training and skill development.

So, the very first thing to keep in mind when you want your furry friend to know how to swim is to start early. The younger your pup is, the more receptive it will be to new experiences.

You should begin to teach your dog how to swim when it is between 2-5 months old. Your dog will have the necessary strength and endurance to withstand its first swimming lesson at this age.

Another aspect to keep in mind is that you never just throw your pup into a large body of water and expect it to swim. That is precisely how dogs develop a fear of water.

The best way to teach your dog how to swim is to take small steps to get your dog to enjoy being in the water. Playing games that involve water or jumping around a kiddie pool does go a long way in helping pet parents teach their dogs to swim.

Initially, the water level where you teach your fur baby swimming should not be above the knees. Slowly, you can increase the water level as you see that your puppy is enjoying itself and paddling. Swimming in deep water for the first couple of times should not be unsupervised. If you are by your pet’s side when it goes into deep water, it will help your pet be at ease.

Furthermore, you can arrange playdates for your fur baby, particularly with other dogs that love to swim. Social settings help dogs just as it assists kids. When your pet is going to be around other dogs that are comfortable around water, your fur baby will understand that being around or in water is safe as well as fun. 

Lastly, if your dog does not seem to enjoy being around water, you should never force it. There isn’t a single moment that your fur baby wouldn’t love to spend with you. Instead of making swimming a bad memory for your pet, you should be smart and use their love for you to teach them to swim.

If you play with water around your canine when they’re young, they’ll eventually learn to bear it. If you spend long hours on the beach, your furry friend will tag along just to be by your side and gradually put up with being in the water with you. 

The basic concept of teaching your fur baby to swim shouldn’t be about learning a skill; it should be about having fun. The more your pet enjoys being with you, the more attuned it will become to being in the water. Swimming will then come naturally to them.


There is no such thing as ‘all dogs love to swim.’ It is ridiculous to make such sweeping statements about dogs. Your dog is an individual and has likes and dislikes just like you. You will find that while one of your four-legged friends enjoys bathing, the other runs in another direction when it’s shower time. 

Teaching your fur baby may be essential, but nothing is more vital than the comfort of your dog. If your pooch seems to hate water, you can undergo training to learn to put up with being around water.

There are even swimming classes that you can take with your pet to teach it to swim. But, it isn’t a skill that should be forced on your dog, as that will reinforce negative associations with swimming. 

Swimming is a fitness fix for your Border Collie. But, if you really want your buddy to be a happy swimmer, you have to take it slow teach them using baby steps.

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