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Can Corgis Swim? Do They Like Water?

Kit Copson

By Kit Copson

two happy welsh corgi pembroke dogs at a beach

Some dogs take to water like a fish—especially natural swimmers like Poodles, Irish Water Spaniels, and Labrador Retrievers—whereas others just aren’t built for swimming. Corgis, for example, aren’t naturally the most adept swimmers, but that doesn’t mean that all Corgis hate the water. In fact, some Corgis can swim pretty well.

Read on to find out more about Corgis, how they are in the water, and some safety tips on taking your Corgi swimming.

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Can Corgis Swim?

The truth is that Corgis aren’t built for swimming due to their short legs and barrel-like body types. It’s also true that in water, they don’t have the natural grace of a Poodle or the confident strides of a Golden Retriever. All that said, a quick search on YouTube confirms that some Corgis can swim and greatly enjoy it!

Whether or not your Corgi will enjoy swimming really depends on the dog as an individual. Some Corgis love the water, others hate it, and some are happy just splashing around or cooling off in shallow water.

corgi dog swimming in shallow water
Image Credit: Atit Siriprarob, Shutterstock

Swimming Safety for Dogs

If your Corgi enjoys swimming, paddling, or even just splashing about at the water’s edge, it’s prudent to follow some key safety guidelines to make sure they don’t get into trouble in the water.

Always Supervise

As with any dog breed, it’s important to supervise your Corgi around water and never leave them alone—no matter where you are. This goes even for dogs that swim well as they may still run into trouble. Be vigilant for signs of tiredness or distress.

If you have a swimming pool in your yard, block your dog’s access to it (i.e. by fencing off the area) until you allow them to go in the water at a time you can supervise them.

Learn CPR

It’s a great idea to learn how to perform CPR on a dog as this could be lifesaving if your dog ever does get into trouble in the water.

Choose Appropriate Swimming Areas

If you’re visiting rivers, lakes, ponds, or the beach, be sure to choose calm, quiet, shallow areas without strong currents and waves. It’s also important to be mindful of water temperature—stay away from very cold water. Avoid areas with blue-green algae as this can be toxic to dogs and try to keep them away from fishing hooks and other gear.

Use a Leash for Beginners

If your Corgi has shown enthusiasm for water and wants to go in a swimming pool for the first time, choose a shallow spot and keep them on a leash. This will give you better control as you gauge how well they take to the water.

Corgi playing with a ball toy
Image Credit: Elena Rogulina, Pixabay

Never Force Your Corgi into Water

This goes without saying, but as a reminder, never just plop your Corgi into a pool, lake, or any body of water and expect them to be okay. This can be incredibly dangerous, especially if you don’t know how well they can swim. Let them go in at their own pace from the water’s edge. If they don’t want to go, never force them.

Kit Your Corgi Out with a Life Jacket

For extra peace of mind, kit your Corgi out with a canine life jacket if they enjoy spending time in the water. This could save your Corgi’s life if they start struggling to paddle from tiredness or otherwise get into difficulty. Life jackets also make it easier for you to see where your dog is in the water.

Install Pool Ramps

If you have a swimming pool that your Corgi loves taking a dip in, make sure they know how to get out, whether by using steps or a ramp.

Only Let Your Corgi Swim in Short Bursts

To prevent your water-loving Corgi from getting too tired, make sure they only swim for short periods at a time and have plenty of breaks.

corgi dog sitting on a big rock
Image Credit: ElfinFox, Pixabay

Teach Important Commands

If you let your Corgi swim, it’s crucial that they’re able to follow commands to come back when they’re called.

Bring Water

If you’re taking a trip out with your Corgi, bring your own water along. Avoid letting your Corgi drink seawater as this can make them unwell.

Rinse and Dry

When your Corgi exits the water, rinse them off to get rid of any chlorine, algae, or saltwater on their fur and thoroughly dry them off, paying special attention to their ears. This helps to avoid ear infections.

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To sum up, though Corgis aren’t the best swimming breed due to their body types, some Corgis do enjoy swimming. On the other hand, some Corgis don’t enjoy swimming or paddling in water so it’s important to respect their boundaries. It really depends on your dog’s preferences. If you do take your Corgi swimming, always plan ahead how you’re going to keep them safe.

Featured Image Credit: Jus_Ol, Shutterstock

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