Pet Water Safety

Pet water safety: Keep your pet safe this summer

The warm summer days can make everyone in your family want to head to the water, including your dog. However, anytime your pet is near water, there are steps you can take to keep them safe. Next time your family has a water day, at the beach, pool, river or other form of water, remember this for  pet water safety.

One of the most important things to remember, always keep an eye on your pet when they are near or in any body or type of water. Some pets may avoid water; however you never know when they will become curious and venture in. Always know exactly where your pet is and if they enter the water ensure they are swimming/touching. While most dogs can swim, some are better than others and some will tire quickly, such as puppies and dogs with flat faces and broad chests, and they will sink.¹ Watching your pet while they are in and around water is important, but there are other important things to remember for pet water safety.

Pool Safety

Backyard pools are the perfect way for your pet to cool off, but without a few precautions this fun activity may become unsafe.

If you have a backyard pool remember:²

  • Train your dog on proper pool behavior. Do not allow them to enter the pool without your command and make sure they know where the stairs are and how to exit the pool when they are ready.
  • Make sure your pool has stairs that are accessible to your pet.
  • Keep your pool in an enclosed area with a fence high and secure enough they cannot enter.
  • Make sure your pool cover is tight and secure so your pet cannot accidently enter the pool and become stuck.

Beach Safety

The beach is a fun family outing in the summer and the perfect way to spend an afternoon. However, the beach has many potential dangers that you need to be aware of.

If you are headed to the beach with your pet remember:²

  • Check the water conditions. If the water temperature is too cold for you, it is most likely too cold for your pet.
  • Watch for currents and riptide warnings. Do not allow your dog to swim too far from shore, there is a risk of both currents and boats not seeing your pet.
  • Never allow your pet to drink the salt water, it is dehydrating and can be dangerous with high intake levels.
  • Ensure there are no harmful algal blooms that can cause life-threatening illness and dangers to your pet, and humans. Always take note of posted signs and follow all warnings.

Pet Water Safety

Whether you are playing at the beach, on the water or in your backyard pool, remember to provide your pet with plenty of drinking water.¹ They should never drink the water from the pool or lake; it may contain harmful chemicals or bacteria. Consider getting your pet a life jacket. This will not only help them float, but will also help you spot them. Most pet life jackets have a handle on the back so you can grab your pet out of the water.1 Encourage your pet to take plenty of breaks throughout the day so they do not get overtired while in the water. Finally, it is highly encouraged to spray your pet off after a day in the water.²

A day at or on the water is a perfect Minnesota summer day. However, without a little proactive work, your fun day can turn dangerous for you and your pet. Remember these items and enjoy the water without any fear.

A Note on Cat Water Safety

While most of these suggestions are geared toward dogs, they can still apply to our feline friends. Most cats will automatically avoid water, however if you have an outdoor cat remember to take precautions, especially if you have a backyard pool. Take similar precautions with your cat to ensure their safety around water.

Interested in fostering or adopting a cat or dog like Theo with Twin Cities Pet Rescue?
Visit our adoptable pets page to find more information and start the process today!



  1. https://vbspca.com/dog-water-safety/
  2. https://vet.tufts.edu/summer-water-safety-for-your-pet/