Did you say swimming

It’s too late, he’s already in the pool. Our dog Nixon, a labrador retriever, has a bit of a problem,well actually, its an unhealthy obsession, and if there was such thing as aquaholics anonymous he’d be the first member. If you know us, or Nixon at all you’ve heard the stories of rescues from the river, boat chases in the kayak and motor boat, me swimming after him furiously and unsuccessfully, and many ways of hauling him in, including a fisherman’s line, 60 ft ski ropes, and of course anything to use as a  lasoo. This video illustrates his dedicated focus, panicked paddle, and whiney determination, coupled with a couple brief pauses to rest for a few seconds, while wagging and staring at the water with such passion that he’s mentally incapable of ending the session on his own, at least we think he is. I should also mention that this video was taken about 30 minutes after the initial plunge, when he agreed to come out to sit on the side for a rest with persuasion. We aren’t sure when exactly this obsession started, but looking back we had encouraged the water from the early age of 8 weeks old, perhaps a mistake, but we still can’t pinpoint exactly where things went wrong. As a huge fan of Cesar Milan, the dog whisperer, we’ve tried many of his different methods to the best of our ability, and they have done wonders with the rest of his existence, mainly leashed walks, recall, and not sleeping in our bed. We’ve tried claiming the water, limiting his time in the water to break focus and a number of other things, but when it all comes down to it, we’re starting to think that those webbed feet mean everything and that he thinks he was born to swim. Although he’s gotten better in the water over the last couple of summers, we sure could use some more helpful tips from Cesar himself on how to break this habit. We are willing to do what it takes to fix him, we just don’t know how. We’ve brought Nixon down to Mexico with us while we spend a couple of months volunteering, and we’re lucky enough to have a condo unit that has this perfect little plunge pool so we can work on Nixon’s issues. We love watching our happy healthy labrador at his finest, in the water, but we also think he’s mentally trapped by his obsession, as Cesar says, and its an unhealthy state to be in. We would love to be able to let him run free on the beach like a normal dog and not worry that he’ll bolt for the ocean and paddle out until exhaustion hits and he’s unable to return.  Cesar, can you please help our little otter to remember he’s a DOG?!

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