So you’ve arrived at one of the holiday homes for dogs and it boasts a lovely relaxing Jacuzzi perfect for romantic evenings under the stars, but what about Fido?
Most dogs love the water, which may lead any pet owner to believe they would enjoy a dip, but is a hot tub Ok for dogs? The answer is no; you should never let your dog in a human hot tub for many reasons.
Not only is it dangerous for their health but hot tubbing with your dog can cause issues with your spa water that can make it unpleasant for humans too.
This article will delve into why your dog and other pets should be kept away from any hot tub whether it’s in your own back garden or a pet-friendly holiday home.
There are several reasons it’s not recommended for your pup to join you in a hot tub:
The number one reason you should keep your dog away from the spa is it is detrimental to their health, but sharing your tub with your pooch can also increase the risk of damage to your spa. Below we’ll look at what risks you need to be aware of:
Dogs don’t regulate their body temperature the same as humans. Because they have fur they are unable to sweat; instead, using panting and their paw pads to keep cool.
A hot tub is heated to around 40 degrees celsius similar in temperature to a hot bath and of course, when in a hot tub your pup’s paws are underwater and can’t do their job which could lead to heat stroke. This is especially true for brachycephalic dog breeds like bulldogs who have a difficult time keeping cool in hot weather and should never spend time in a hot tub.
You will need to add chemicals to keep your hot tub clean, However, Chlorine, Bromine and other chemicals used to keep your spa hygienic can be particularly harmful to dogs, especially if your pet tends to lap up any water they come across whilst enjoying a swim.
Even just spending time in the spa water for a few minutes can irritate your dog’s skin and cause sore eyes and ears.
Too much time spent sitting breathing in Chlorine which is present in most hot tubs can also cause respiratory issues for your dog and in serious cases can be life-threatening for your pet.
This is because when inhaled or ingested Chlorine reacts with moisture to produce hydrochloric or hydrochloric acids, which are extremely toxic and can cause lasting damage to the respiratory tract.
If you have a smaller dog, they may not be able to jump out of the water which in the worst-case scenario could result in your pet drowning in the worst-case scenario. In fact, there was a recent news story of an English Bulldog puppy almost drowning after falling into its owner’s hot tub.
You should always utilise the cover when the tub is not being used to prevent accidents either to children, your dog or other wildlife.
If you choose to relax in a spa do you really want to be soaking in dog hair? Even if your furry friend is not a shaggy dog, the fur they shed will, over time, block your hot tub filters resulting in them losing their effectiveness,
We all know that sweat, lotions and bodily fluids from us affect the water chemistry in a hot tub so unsurprisingly introducing a dog into the hot water complicates things even further.
Tick and flea repellents will affect the water’s chemistry and other debris your dog adds to the mix, such as dust, pollen, and even fox poo makes the hot tub water unpleasant for human bathers to relax in.
Finally, there’s a risk of punctures. Although most hot tubs are robust, dogs don’t sit and enjoy a relaxing soak like us and may try to jump out. Constant scrabbling and scratching from a dog’s nails (or cats) can cause lasting damage to inflatable hot tubs resulting in expensive repairs.
Bromine is often used to sanitise a hot tub instead of Chlorine. Although it is not considered as harsh, there are still some dangers for your pet when using Bromine, especially for those pooches that suffer from allergies or sensitive skin. In fact, no matter what you use to keep your hot tub clean, it can cause a reaction in some dogs.
Many people wonder if dogs can burst an inflatable spa and whilst the answer is generally no there are exceptions.
Even if your dog has claws that are neatly trimmed you may still encounter problems. It is unlikely your pet will enjoy sitting and relaxing: their idea of fun will be to swim and jump about in the warm water. If your dog scratches a particular area, over time, it will become weaker and prone to punctures and leaks.
The best way to protect a hot tub from a dog is to prevent access either by building an enclosure for your hot tub or alternatively using temporary dog fencing. Many hot tub owners find spraying a repellent or using natural alternatives such as citric acid can be an effective way to keep pets away from a hot tub.
Of course, it is imperative to keep the cover on your spa when not in use, Not only will this prevent the temperature from dropping, saving you money it will ensure unwanted accidents for curious pets and children alike.
The heat will undoubtedly cause your pooch to become thirsty so what will happen if they drink hot tub water? In most cases, the small doses of Chlorine or Bromine found in a hot tub won’t be an issue. However, ingesting either in large quantities can be extremely dangerous as they produce toxic gases, so never, ever let your four-legged friend consume spa water!
So the upshot is that while it may look like fun your dog should never go in the hot tub. The chemicals used to keep the water clean are bad for Fido’s skin and lungs and the temperature of spa water is too hot as dogs can’t regulate their body temperature and sweat like we do.
Then there’s the dirty water to consider even dogs that may not appear grubby will deposit dog hair, dead skin and debris resulting in clogged filters, a less efficient filtration system and bad chemistry in the spa itself.
Many dogs love to swim but to keep your dog safe it’s a much better idea to invest in a kiddie pool. These are cheap, perfect for a dog or children. Simply fill with cool water, that way your dog can spend time swimming or enjoy a soak without damaging your own hot tub or suffering from the effects of the chemical-filled hot spa water.
Pets and hot tubs don’t mix so to keep your dog safe always use the cover when the spa is not in use and ensure your relaxing experience remains pet-free. If your dog enjoys swimming take them for a splash around in a local stream or to the beach for a splash around.