Saturday, October 20, 2007

Katie's First Swimming Lesson

Katie had her first swimming lesson or swim therapy session today. We went to Wag-n-Swim on Winters Chapel Road in Atlanta ( The swim therapist that owns the place, Eva, was very nice and obviously loved animals very much. The inside of the building was adorable with attractive, non-slip tile (there's an idea for the house with lots of dogs!) and decorated for a charming and welcoming feel. The pool is indoors and above ground surrounded by a wooden deck. The pool room has a warm, humid, tropical feel to it. This is perfect for keeping a greyhound from getting chilly when they come out of the water. The water is heated to 90 degrees, so it feels like warm bath water. The dogs are picked up to be placed in or taken out of the pool. Katie is tired of being carried, so this was not her favorite part. It made me wonder how Eva gets a 100 lb dog in the pool. A doughnut shaped floaty was placed around Katie's neck which made it easy for her to keep her head above the water and to keep water out of her nose and ears. During a therapy session, Eva encourages the dog to swim using all 4 legs and to extend and flex all of the joints. She also massages, works on relaxing the muscles, and holds the dog in various positions. I would walk along the edge of the pool to offer Katie treats. It worked out great because it was easy to encourage her to swim across the pool or to paddle faster when Eva wanted her to. I think Katie swam for the better part of an hour and was a bit like jelly when she came out of the pool. She quickly regained her strength and was able to walk out. Eva warned me that she might be sore and even limp for a day......... although I'm not sure I would notice a limp when has a funky way of going right now. I thought she would be quite tired for the rest of the day, but honestly, I think she is ready for anything now that she has had a couple of hours to nap. Eva suggested that she come once or twice a month for a few months. I was relieved to hear that versus once or twice a week. I am not sure how I would make it to this location during the week with all of the traffic. But I would highly recommend this Wag-n-Swim if your dog could use some swimming exercise.