We got Boomer when the weather was starting to turn cold, so we never had any time with him as a puppy to go swimming. Bella has always loved the water – I don’t remember any transitional phase. It’s not like she learned to like it. If there’s water around, whether it’s a lake or a mud puddle, she wants to be in it.
The first time we took Boomer to the water it was cold and gloomy out. I didn’t even want to dip my fingers in. Bella didn’t care – she galloped into the shallows and waded around to her heart’s content. Boomer waited at the shore line and whined for his friend.
Then we took them to the beach when we moved up here to Virginia. The water was freezing. Even Bella was hesitant to get in too deep. Boomer finally got used to his paws being wet, but never intentionally got in the surf.
A few weeks ago I took them for a walk after a rain storm and he dodged the puddles like they were made of acid. I began to wonder if he might be broken…he is a lab after all.
But then we took him to nearby Lone Star Lakes Park and let him and Bella explore at one of the boat ramps. Bella was wading around in the chest-deep water and Boomer finally got up the nerve to walk in past his ankles. He bit at each splash like the water was a living thing, puzzled by its rapid disappearing act. He walked with his feet far out in front of him baffled by his inability to stand on this glassy surface. It was really funny to watch. He began running back and forth, chasing the splashes.
He likes the water now. He doesn’t love it yet, but he’s getting there. Good thing we have a long summer to look forward to.