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by Ruben S.

Can Maltese puppies swim instinctively? I bathe my 4 month baby in our tub - I wonder if she would rather swim around.


Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

Also, what temperature is ideal for the little girl? Can she tolerate hot water like humans?

We find our Maltese to be DISTINCTLY DIVIDED on this issue. Some of them will look for every chance to get into a wading pool and splash around for as long as allowed....others look for a place to hide anytime they even hear water running. I think it's just a "personal thing" from dog to dog. Still, we've got several of them that, when allowed the opportunity to swim in the pool do so quite well - some of our funniest pictures are of two of our first Maltese laying side-by-side on a floating raft out in the pool.
-Larry Stanberry Divine Maltese

Our little Reuben swims in our lake! We take him on the boat and when my husband and I are both in the water (very shallow area) he goes crazy on the back of the boat wanting to jump off and swim with us. We pick him up and lower him into the water and as soon as his feet touch the water, all four legs start paddling like crazy! It is so cute! He doesn't seem to be scared of being bathed either, but I know my mom's "Baby" is very afraid of the water, baths or otherwise.

Our dog, Buster loves to swim. He loves to float around on the air mattress with us, and when he needs to cool off he jumps off, and paddles around and then climbs back on. He also doensn't mind wearing a visor to keep the sun out of his eyes. Michelle, are you from Minnesota? -Patti Michelle

I accidentally discovered that my maltese was a swimmer earlier this summer. I was delighted, but after relaying the story on this board others warned me of the potential dangers. I still allow my dog to swim - because he LOVES it - but I always watch him closely. Check the archives for more stories on this topic and don't make your dog do anything he doesn't wish to do himself.

To answer your question about water temperature. When I asked my vet about water temp. he told me to lay my hand on the examining table and said the water temp should be the sameas this table. So now I just lay my hand on the side of the tub and adjust the water temp to match. I definitely wouldn't use hot water on them. Their skin is so thin and delicate. I would be afraid of burning them.

Patti: Sorry it took me so long to answer your question - No, I am from Michigan, not Minnesota! Also, when we let Reuben swim, we watch him carefully, and we don't let him swim around too long, only a couple minutes at a time!

We have two Maltese Bruno and Rocky. They are as different as day and night when it comes to bathing Bruno the older one by about a month loves the water where as Rocky all four paws straight out and whimpering does not. I guess to each little white bundle of joy his own.
-Atti and Bruce

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