Published: 17:00, 15 August 2019
| Updated: 17:12, 15 August 2019
A new swimming pool just for dogs has opened on Sheppey.
Island Dog ‘n’ Splash, in Harty Ferry Road, Harty, offers either 30-minute group swim sessions or private one-to-ones in its outdoor pool.
It is suitable for all breeds of dogs and puppies from six months old.
Owner Emma Llewellyn, who also has Island Dog Grooming and Pet Supplies in Leysdown, said she wanted to try something different for pets and their owners.
She said: “I came across someone in Suffolk offering this kind of facility. We’re situated in a nice position, I’ve got eight dogs myself and wondered if it was something I could do too.
"It’s just trying to find, and offer, different things for people and their pets.”
The 45-year-old added: “It’s all about building dogs’ confidences, especially if they haven’t swam before, in a safe environment.
“There are a range of health benefits to them swimming too, especially for the older dogs as it can really help with their joints – a five-minute swim is equivalent to a one-mile walk.
“It’s not a hydrotherapy pool though, it’s just a pool for dogs to come and have fun and exercise.
“It relaxes them, stimulates them because it’s a different activity, and wears them out.
“For the more adventurous and competitive dogs, we’ve also got a raised decking platform for them to run and jump into the water and practice their dock jumping skills.”
The saltwater pool is 32ft by 16ft, is 4ft deep and features a ramp to ease nervous pooches into the water too.
A typical session would include the canines fetching floating toys and swimming in figures of eight, making sure they work each side of their bodies equally.
Mrs Llewellyn said: “There’s always one of us in the water to help and play with them.”
Island Dog ‘n’ Splash is open Mondays, Wednesdays and weekends. Group sessions cost £12 per dog and one-to-ones £20 per dog.
To find out more, call Emma on 07990 581130 or visit the ‘Island Dog n Splash’ Facebook page.