Dog in Distress

Some dogs are magically attracted to water. No sooner have they discovered a river, lake, or pond than they are already in the cool water. With this passion, they can put their lives in danger, but also their people.

Don’t play the hero

It’s a horrible situation: the dog, full of lust for life, suddenly jumps into a river, dives under, comes up panting, and desperately fights against the current. First thought: For God’s sake – he’s going to drown – I have to get him out. The first impulse: jump in and save your four-legged friend. Giving in to that first impulse can have deadly consequences.

Repeated fatal accidents

It may sound brutal given the dog struggling to stay afloat, but never play the hero in this situation! And inculcate this in your children too: “You must never jump into the water after the dog!” In fact, chasing after the dog is pointless. If it sinks, you won’t find it anyway, because it may have submerged further or been swept away by the current. And: where the dog cannot stay afloat, you certainly cannot, because the dog is a much better swimmer than humans, i. H. in a rescue attempt you would not be of any help to the dog.

The dog becomes a danger itself

The dog is also endangering your life by swimming towards you, frantically flapping its paws at you and trying to climb on you, even pushing you underwater. He doesn’t do that with bad intentions, but because that’s just the way dogs are. You are only really helping your dog if you are not putting yourself in danger. The safety of the rescuer is also the top priority when rescuing people.

Help the dog from the bank

Recommends trying to rescue a dog first from the shore using tools. It is best if a lifebuoy is within reach. Throw it to the dog. Most dogs accept this offer of help and put their paws in the ring so you can pull the animal out with the lifeline. A long branch can also be of help to the dog. Hold the branch out to the dog, it will usually bite into it, and you can slowly and carefully pull it ashore. If you don’t have this option, try to steer your dog to a safe bank. This spot should be such that either the dog can get out on its own or you have a secure location so you can pull it out. While that spot may seem far away, it’s worth a try as most dogs are strong swimmers and last a lot longer than you think.

Only well secured in the water

If you don’t see any other way of getting the dog on land than going into the water yourself, only do this with sufficient security, i.e. “on a leash”. You need a stable, long line and a second person who can pull you out in an emergency. It is not enough if you put the leash around her wrist. Loop the leash around your chest, making sure the clasp or knot cannot come undone. Don’t forget to remove at least your outer clothing before entering the water, otherwise, the soaked clothes will drag you under the water like lead.

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