While most dogs can swim, some breeds like Labradors are just better than others. So, where do our beloved Rotties stand? Are rottweilers good swimmers?
Rottweilers can swim, but they may not be as good as other breeds. They weren’t explicitly bred for swimming or watersports. But this intelligent and courageous breed can learn to be a strong swimmer.
Further, we will go through why aren’t they good and how you can teach them to swim. We will also put a light on some benefits of swimming for Rottweilers.
Why aren’t Rottweilers good swimmers?
The reason why Rottweilers aren’t natural swimmers is simply that they weren’t bred for it.
Rotties originated in German, where they were used to herd livestock. Farmers would also use them to pull the cart from town to town to sell goods. At the end of the day, farmers would tie the money around the rottweiler’s neck to protect it from thieves.
Their history as a working breed made them strong and muscular. It also made them protective and loyal to their owners. However, they didn’t have much interaction with water in the past.
This breed never got a chance to develop the ability to be a great swimmer. And that’s why Rottweilers aren’t natural swimmers.
Can Rottweilers Swim?
Rottweilers can swim, but they might not be the best swimmers. Their muscular body and face structure make it harder to master this skill. However, with some training, they can be taught to swim.
Swimming comes naturally to dogs, well, almost all dogs. But some breeds are better at it, and some aren’t. Rottweilers are the later one. As we discussed above, this breed never got a chance to develop this skill.
Even though rottweilers are muscular and strong, swimming is not their cup of tea. Their body is not designed for swimming for a longer period.
While they may not swim from shore to shore, they can swim at their own pace. But it is important to note that every dog has a different personality, and some Rotts may not swim at all.
I asked our community of rottweiler owners to share their experience on this topic:
Matt: My rottweiler knows how to swim naturally. We didn’t have to teach him. We just took him to a nearby lake, and he started swimming. While he enjoys being in the water, he couldn’t swim for more than 5 minutes. Of course, we had him wear a lifejacket, and I was by his side all the time.
Kevin: Ours hate being in the water. We tried taking her to a pool, but she refused to go inside. She doesn’t even like to get wet.
Teach your Rottweiler to Swim
Fortunately, almost all dogs can swim, including our Rotties. But you cannot just throw your dog in the water and expect them to start swimming. Although they may begin swimming, it’s not safe.
Step 1: Before you start the training, put a dog life jacket on your rottweiler. It will keep your dog floating while he learns to swim.
Step 2: Take your dog to still water, like a pool or a lake, instead of a river or beach.
Step 3: Encourage your dog to come in the water with you. Hold some treats in your hand to motivate him.
Step 4: Do not force your rott to come in the water if he is not ready. Let him take his time.
Step 5: All the dog jackets have a handle on top of it. Hold it while you take your rott to shallow water.
Step 6: Once his paws don’t touch the ground, he will start peddling and swimming.
Step 7: Do not leave him alone in the water. Don’t go further than one-hand-distance.
Try to make this entire experience fun for your Rottie. And if he can’t swim, then it’s perfectly alright. Not all dogs can swim.
- Do not force your dog if he doesn’t want to come into the water.
- Prise your dog on every step. Rottweilers are eager to please their owners, and praising will keep them motivated.
- Don’t leave your rott alone in the water. You will need to be right beside them.
- Shampoo your rottweiler after every swimming session.
- Be patient.
Benefits of Swimming
Swimming is super healthy for dogs. It is an excellent full-body exercise for your Rottweiler. It strengthens the heart, increases stamina, increases metabolism, and improves blood circulation. Basically, Swimming can improve the overall health of Rottweilers.
1 Minute of Swimming = 8 Minutes of Walking
Swimming requires different than usual moments. This helps to stretch all the muscles in the dog’s body.
Water takes away the majority of the body weight, putting minimal pressure on the dogs’ paws. This makes it an ideal exercise for rottweilers with joint problems, like arthritis or dysplasia.
If your Rottie is overweight, then swimming can help them lose weight. Ten minutes of swimming is equivalent to 30 minutes of running. So swimming can help your rott burn some extra calories can become healthy.
Summing this up, swimming can be a fun and healthy activity for your Rottweiler. While most rottweiler can swim, some may not. And if your Rottie cannot swim, then it’s totally fine. Some dogs just hate water, and you should respect their choice.