How Did We End Up With Two Pool Phobic Golden Girls?

Hey It’s Jet Here.

Crazy, crazy, crazy… Two Golden Girls who didn’t get the whole swimming memo thingie!  When Mom adopted Koko back in 2005, she thought Rachel would love having a swim partner in the pool!  To be fair, Mom was pretty excited about swimming with Koko too!  Mr. Fred carried Koko in the first time and … sheer panic!  No graceful doggie paddle, oh no, Koko the calm, sweet, noble K9 clearly thought she was going to die.  For years afterwards, she would trot around the perimeter and keep the family company and that was that.

In the interim, our screen enclosure partially blew  away in Hurricane Wilma, and with biscuit money in less supply, by the time Mom tried pool swimming (as opposed to dog park pond or canal “swamp dog” swimming) with me, I was on leash.  We didn’t swim together often, however, once I learned where the steps were, I would swim a lap or two with a little “encouragement” to enter the water.

Since JJ arrived with many health issues, Dr. Schaffer didn’t clear her for swimming until two weeks ago when her ear check up went well.

In anticipation of the eventual green flag, Mom ordered two 30’ leashes from Soft Lines, to allow for more freedom and the possibility of future beach visits!

Well, Sunday was the day.  Mom decided that she would alternate swimming with me, than JJ, tying the non-swimming K9 onto the patio pole.  I went first to show JJ how swimming goes at Casa Jet.  Forgive the lack of pictures, however as you read about our adventures, you’ll see why.  We will try again when Rachel is with us.

Mom had to “help” my hind paws onto step 1, well into the pool, and then I gracefully swam the perimeter once, got out, shook (30x/min) according to!  Then it was JJ’s turn.

JJ expressed some reluctance, so, Mom talked sweetly and firmly.  She wet Little Miss Mani/Pedi’s paws and gave her a little encouragement as they both entered the pool.  JJ FREAKED OUT! Her front paws splashed wildly, while her back legs did… NOTHING causing her tush to sink.  As Mom immediately went to support her belly with her two arms underneath, JJ’s back paws got Mom in several places. (causing bruising the likes of a loser in a prizefight!) Mom cradled JJ within a minute and JJ regained equilibrium in about another minute as Mom securely held her and spoke to her.  Mom remained in this position with JJ for about 15 minutes, walking in the pool, talking to JJ, rocking her, etc…

Round 2:

We alternated turns again for round 2, Mom knowing in advance what to do for JJ.  Mom and I did 2 laps for round two which garnered (vocab building project) lots of compliments from Mom.  During JJ’s turn, somehow, JJ segued (VBP) from cradle position to overgrown toddler position!  Picture this: JJ’s front paws hugging Mom’s neck, their two cheeks touching like a slow dancing couple, and Mom cupping JJ’s tush like a toddler!  Mom laughed heartily as she remained that way for another 10 minutes or so, walking in the pool, leaning backwards to give JJ the sensation of being horizontal.  She told JJ in her special way she was safe and at moments felt JJ relax.

Turn 3:

I actually entered the pool, all four paws myself, while Mom gently tugged and used her encouraging voice to start swimming.  When I did, I felt like Jetty Phelps or Jetty Lochte with cheering crowds (Mom!) praising me while swimming my final perimeter lap and a half.   She told me the rest of the day how proud she was of my accomplishments! (picture from a few weeks ago in Neve’s pool)

JJ’s turn looked like Round 2, with the toddler pose.  Mom praised JJ for her courage.  JJ even practiced front paw doggie paddle with Mom’s belly support.

We exited the patio, enjoyed a typical spa day and passed out until mid afternoon!  Mom on the other hand, worked on the computer and in the kitchen making Persian meatballs! (saving that for a future Tasty Tuesday!)

Another great swim day.


Inspired by Michael Phelps

Hey It’s Jet Here.

A few weeks ago, JJ, Mom and I watched the US Olympic Swim Trials from Omaha.  Miss Beverly actually attended one of the sessions during her vacation.  She told us that the venue where the event took place normally does not have a pool.  They showed how the pool was installed in a video which fascinated Mom.

Mr. Michael Phelps, along with dozens of other men and women, swam their hearts out for spots on our national Olympic team.  Three pairs of eyes at Casa Jet looked on with admiration. I thought about my adventures in the canal wistfully (vocab builder).

This past week, we visited Miss Beverly’s backyard twice.  Since she has a fence, we can run and explore untethered (vocab builder). I usually enter her pool on the first step to enjoy the largest of water bowls, to Mom’s chagrin (vocab builder). Last night, the water level equaled the 2nd step as a result of a new skimmer installation. I took advantage of the “water bowl” several times and slipped down to the third and final step a few times.

Miss Beverly, always quick with the iPhone, got a shot of my slightly ungraceful posture.  Mom thought I looked adorable.  (What can I say, once a Mom, always a Mom!)

I admit that with the soaring temperature and heat index, that water felt good on my paws and belly.  On the fourth or fifth visit to the water fountain, I actually paid attention to Mom asking if I wanted to try to swim.  Mom always swims with me on my leash in our pool since we do not have a fence or enclosure any more. (Thanks Hurricane Wilma (before my time.)) Mom used her happy, “Come on Jetty you can do it” voice.  I’m not sure what happened, but, there I was dog paddling once around the perimeter. Well Mom cheered, clapped, praised and told Miss Beverly how proud she was.  I exited the pool, ran around, re-entered and tried a shorter route one more time.  Mom responded the same way.

I had to endure the fresh water hose down by our front door, then the towel-off inside the kitchen, before receiving a big Hextra Chew for a treat. Miss Beverly texted Mom the two pictures and Mom in turn texted to Miss Mary Ann.

Thanks Mr. Phelps, maybe I’ll train for the doggie paddle event in the K9 Olympics!

Another great, swimming, day.