Can English Bulldogs Swim?

Can English Bulldogs swim?

You have probably seen the joy your Bulldog feels when he plays in the mud or kiddie pool. And being a loving owner, you’re probably thinking of letting your Bulldog swim in the pool or beach.


But can Bulldogs swim?

The sad truth is no. Bulldogs cannot swim on their own because of the structure of their body. Big heads, round and heavy torso, and short legs – Bulldogs just aren’t made for swimming. Our beloved flat-faced buddies will immediately sink the moment they jump into deep waters.

But my Bulldog loves playing in the water. What should I do?

While Bulldogs cannot swim on their own, they can swim with the right training, proper gear, and 100% supervision. If you want to let your Bulldog enjoy paddling and swimming then it is important to get him a well-fitting swimming vest or life jacket to make sure your Bulldog stays afloat. Young Bulldog puppies usually fit in small vests while adult Bulldogs need medium-sized vests.

Read: Bulldog Behavior and Temperament: How to Keep Your Canine Companion in Check

If it’s your Bulldog’s first time to go into the pool or beach, try introducing him to the water first. Start by slowly lowering him down the water. Dogs have an instinct to go paddling when they get into the water. Once your Bulldog starts moving legs to go paddling, you can now let him go slowly. It will also help to have a treat in hand to try to lure your Bulldog to swim towards you. Using treats as reward, you can also teach your Bulldog where to enter and exit the pool.

Do note that just like all dogs; Bulldogs need to be supervised when swimming all the time – even if they have their swimming vests on.

If you want lesser worries, then you can also opt to let our Bulldog “swim” in the kiddie pool instead.

But there are Bulldogs who can swim without life jackets?

This video of a Bulldog swimming in a lake without a life jacket probably amazed you. It’s awesome to see a Bulldog have fun and able to swim on his own but do not take this video as a reason to let your Bulldog swim without his life jacket on. Only a number of Bulldogs can do this and it is always best to keep your Bulldog safe – even when he’s enjoying.

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