YAY!!!!!!!!!!! I’m still internally jumping up and down and break into a smile every time I think about it. Zora WENT SWIMMING!
And not angry swimming like my friend’s corgi, but actual happy dog swimming. Multiple times. Across the river. With current. Even figured out how to use the current to her advantage.
Zora. Went. Swimming!!!!
We have been building up to this for literally months. Building her comfort, interest and confidence. In every body of water we could find.
When we started she would find ways to stay out of the water. Hopping from rock to rock. Or just running the bank. While Tom went swimming and kibble fishing.
Then progressed to her feet in the water. Then up to her chest. Then nose in for cookies. Then getting the ball or a stick as long as it stayed close enough to shore. Then actually jumping into the kiddie pool. Or instead of hopping from rock to rock at the stream, finding the places where she could still walk and she’d choose to walk through the water instead of over or round it. Then walking through puddles in the rain even. We’d have a party when she’d choose to engage with water instead of avoid it. Tom was a good role model, nice and calm and happy to be in the water.
And then and then and then!!! This weekend we went up to NH for a few days away and of course took the dogs. We stayed at a campground with a river next to it. Due to the recent drought the river was pretty low, and rather warm. Because of this I was able to wade up to my knees in it and I think that gave Zora the final bit of confidence she needed to actually swim!
By day two she was leaping into the water from the bigger rocks. Like the little whee splash happy corgis I’ve seen videos of.
It was awesome seeing her happy and confident. Swimming! Made the trip for me.
(alas no photos or videos, I was too enthralled with supporting her swimming and my husband was busy panning for gold flecks. Also the risk of my falling head over heels in the river made the choice to leave the camera at the campsite)