Ask anyone who does it regularly—swimming has a lot of health benefits. It’s a low-impact cardiovascular workout that builds endurance, and it exercises almost the entire body, with little joint strain.
So if swimming is that good for people, why wouldn’t it be similarly good for dogs?
That’s the thinking behind See Spot Swim, a new venture launched by two local businesswomen. See Spot Swim offers swimming sessions for dogs, in a dedicated pool and under the guidance of trained professionals.
The pool is in the office of Canine Physical Rehab, at 2285 Cornell Avenue in Montgomery, owned by Carol Jurca, a certified canine rehabilitation practitioner. Jurca has joined with Katherine Manola, owner of in Oswego, to launch See Spot Swim, and she says the benefits for dogs are numerous.
“It’s a good workout,” she said. “Some dogs just sit on the couch and look out the window, bored out of their minds. This is a wonderful release of built-up energy for them.”
The See Spot Swim pool is 25 feet long, four feet deep, and filled with saltwater, which Jurca said is gentler for the dogs’ skin and takes fewer chemicals to clean. The pool is heated—the water is kept at 85 degrees.
Jurca said some dogs are afraid of the water at first, but that’s where she and her team of professionals come in. Dogs are fitted with life jackets, with handles on them so trainers can keep hold of them, and Jurca and her team have experience coaxing skittish dogs into the water, and helping them out once they’re in.
Swimming is particularly good for dogs with arthritis, and can’t exercise on land without pain, she said. The reaction has been terrific so far, she said. Dog owners who normally would bring their dogs into their own pools, or into rivers and ponds, now have a safe, clean, controlled place to bring them in for an exercise session.
Canine Physical Rehab has been in business for four years, but only at its current Montgomery location for the last eight months. The business partners met last year, when Manola brought her dogs to Jurca for physical therapy.
Manola said she became involved with the swimming side of things after seeing the difference it made in the health of her own dogs.
This is the pair's second venture together, after , a joint dog walking and physical therapy rehab service.
A 30-minute session in the See Spot Swim pool will run you $45. A second dog from the same family can join in for $10; a third for $5. Longer sessions are available as well. Jurca said the company will begin holding puppy classes as well, for dogs between three and eight months old. Five puppies can join the class at once, for $15 each.