I said in a brief post the other day that Gwen was going to get “Swimming Lessons.” Here is the story of that; but first let me back up and tell you how we ended up getting signed up for that in the first place! Because, to tell you the truth, it was kind of a spur of the moment sort of thing!
Facebook is a glorious thing (sometimes) which allows you to find out about events and things in the area and also lets you
stalk check up on follow what your friends, family, co-workers are doing. It also allows you to follow different groups or interests in the area. Along with all the horse stuff that I “follow” are quite a few Corgi and dog pages. One of the local dogs pages had a flyer for a “Howliday Party and Open House.” I saw this and knew that we just had to go! So on Sunday, we plugged the address into our GPS, got Gwen into the car, and headed off to this Howliday Party & Open house.
The place is called Wag-N-Splash and it is an indoor pool for dogs. It is used for fun, exercise and therapy. The organization that their event was raising money for is Daisy’s Place Retriever Rescue. Its mission is to find safe and loving homes for older Retrievers and mixes. I have a soft spot for Labs, especially Black Labs named Dayzee/Daisy (or any variant of the name). I knew that I wanted to go to the event and would be perfectly fine donating some money and buying some raffle tickets!
Oh and by the way, I won one of the raffles!!! I won a penguin toy and an antler! I haven’t got them yet, will pick up on our next visit. 🙂
We went, I bought some raffle tickets, we got Gwen’s picture taken (I will share that once I scan in the picture — it is adorable!), we bought a fleecy toy, and we talked to the lady about what they do there and ended up signing Gwen up for a “swimming lesson!” I don’t know what else to call it a “session” maybe? I like saying swimming lesson best. 🙂
Gwen was signed up for 8 am the next day (Monday). We rolled out of bed, took puppy out to go potty and then grabbed some cereal bars and loaded up in the truck. Gwen wasn’t allowed to eat before she went swimming since it was going to be at the time that she normally eats. Reminded me of the waiting 1 hour to swim after you eat rule. I think the next part can be told with pictures and video! Yes, I took some videos and I apologize in advance for the ridiculousness at the ends…I couldn’t figure out how to make it quit recording.
Heading to Gwen’s first swimming lesson! She would make a very intense driver. Can you imagine Corgis driving?? They’d probably ram into the other cars to make them go where they wanted and would certainly use the horn.
All dogs are fitted with life jackets until they are comfortable in the water and can swim without them. Safety first!
The life jacket gave Gwen some buoyancy issues so they switched her out to this floaty collar thing, similar to the floaties that go on your arms but made for dogs. Gwen did MUCH better with this thing! The vest made her kind of list to the side since she doesn’t have legs to counter balance her or a tail to be a rudder.
Such a sleepy puppy once she was all done! She curled up on the floor behind my seat in the car and went to sleep. Then proceeded to sleep aaaaaaall day!
This is the toy we bought to help support the Daisy’s Place. This thing is bigger than Gwen (almost)!
Gwen was all sorts of tuckered out when we got home. We had so much fun watching Gwen play in the water! She is signed up to go again this weekend! I am not sure how much she actually enjoys it but it is good exercise for her and would definitely benefit her health in the long run if we are able to find something similar elsewhere (being military, you know).
The first session is introductory to see if the dog likes the water and to help them to gain confidence in the water. After the first session the owners are allowed to go into the pool with the dog. I think the “instructor” is still in the pool for safety reasons and such. Andrew has plans to get in the pool with Gwen next time, he is looking forward to it immensely! Next time we are going to take a couple of Gwen’s toys (that are waterproof of course!) to see if she will try to play with them. They have toys there but she wasn’t interested in them in the water so much as she was when she was on the pool deck.
The pool place is run by a couple of sisters and the swims are by appointment only. The water is a salt water system so the dogs are not forced into contact with the chlorine which is not very good for them. I wish that there was something similar to this close to my parents because I think Dayzee would LOVE it! Dayzee likes to play in the swampy water that is right off the beach at home and I think sometimes she goes into the ocean but I don’t think she likes the surf that much. I remember going down to the beach for the first time with Dayzee and my Dad. We took her down to the lagoon part that is right before you get to the Navy section. Dayzee loved it! My dad told me that if Dayzee started to drown that I would have to jump into the lagoon and save her…Thank God she can swim!
Gwen is a quick little swimmer! We didn’t know how she would be since she’s so long and has stubby legs but she sure was quick! Quick on land and quick in the water!!! There is another Corgi that swims there too. She was supposed to come in right after Gwen but we were only there for a short swim so we didn’t get to see the next dog. The ladies said that their dachshund swims and can’t use the life jacket either since he is built similar to Gwen and he uses the neck ring thing too. “The Corgpedo” comes form how fast she is…like a torpedo! Here are a couple little video to finish off this insanely long post! You don’t have to watch the videos, but I thought I’d share them either way. 🙂
And this last video shows her swimming with the floaty collar: