Paddle boarding with your best friend can be the best fun and the most challenging at times. All dogs love to swim but best of all they love to be with you. Hanging out with you is their job in life, please take me with you, PLEASE! When you come home, any time of the day they will great you with most love ever, I know mine does.
Start your dog off as early in life and your relationship as possible. Do not give him a choice, instead share with him that this is your new life. (sink or swim) Most dogs will do what you do, others will come around. It is like teaching him to sit, training him to go potty outside. Persistence is key, remember you are the boss.
Teaching him young at 8 weeks is key, putting him on a board in the pool or at a lake is key as often as you can gives him a new life. Remember, all dog just want to please you because they are your best friend and you are their best friend. Trust is a given, accept it and believe it.
Red is my best friend and has paddled with hundreds of customers all of our friends for ever. That is one benefit of socializing your dog, he is now everybody’s friend and has a memory file of everybody he has met.
How to position him on the board, at first he will put himself where he best feels most comfortable. Then you will find out if he is one position dog or multiple position dog. My dog Red is all over the board which promotes my balance, wish for that. If he is a one position dog then you will figure out where it is best to position yourself. Paddle paddle paddle until you fall off or he falls off.
This brings us to an important bridge, should he where a life vest or no life vest. I have always opted for no life vest. There are many dog folks that insist you need a life vest for a dog. Most of these folks never go near the water and wear a life vest when in the water. You can say that there maybe dogs that fear the water as well. I have seen plenty and they become accustom to riding on the board the more they go. If you know how to swim would you wear a life vest? I will when in a storm or a dangerous situation, safety first. Dogs are natural swimmers, some are to big and muscular that make it hard for them to float. Some just can’t swim. I have started all of my dogs off with life vests until they look at me, really dad, I swim with you all the time. It is our responsibility to teach them how to swim.
Now the fun begins, surfing with your dog. There are a lot of dogs that will ride in a cart, on a bike, in your backpack or the back of your truck. The more they do it the more they master the balance of the danger. Use a teather at first to keep them out of harms way. Beleave me, there are dogs out there that have no idea what danger is, watch them carefully. Find a boat or a beach that has an easy wave and paddle out to catch a wave. Be sure you have mastered surfing first as your dog will love you more. Once you have caught a few wave you find your dog will want to ride up front. He will actually recognize the wave and position himself for the best ride. He is your buddy, you partner, your best friend. Dogs love having fun with their best friend too.
This is the part your dog loves you so much because they trust you to keep them out of harms way. Dogs hold their breath underwater, honest they do. So when you wipe out or they have fallen off, get back to them quickly. Helping them back on board is very easy for you and your dog. Simply put your hand behind his head after he has reached your board. He will brace off your hand as he pulls himself up on the board. Do not pull him by the scruff of his neck, that hurts. Best of all, try all of theses simple fun tasks to enjoy life with your best friend.
PS. Keep his paws protected.
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