boston terriers like swimming

Can Boston Terriers Swim? – Facts And Information

The quick answer is yes, Boston Terriers can and do swim as most dogs are able to swim. A lot of people might not think Boston Terriers can swim due to them being a brachycephalic breed. This means they have a squished in snout, and a heavier head compared to the rest of their body.

However, this is not true, Boston Terriers can swim, and are actually great swimmers depending on their training and age of the dog.

How Long Can Boston Terriers Swim?

Due to their body structure, Boston Terriers shouldn’t be allowed to swim for great distances or even a long time. But that doesn’t mean they can’t swim at all. They just have to be limited with their time swimming unlike other breeds such as a Labrador Retriever.

The average distance a Boston Terrier can swim is about the length of a swimming pool and back. Some can do longer depending on health and weight but remember they will tend to tire out quite fast and should be supervised.

swimming boston terrier

Do Boston Terriers Like To Swim?

Before you decide to throw your Boston Terrier into the water, first we need to look at if Boston Terriers even like to swim in the water. The answer is not quite simple. I have seen Boston Terriers who don’t mind water and would have no problems swimming, and I have seen others that will fight you tooth and nail before getting in the water.

This is just something that depends on your individual Boston Terrier.  The key is getting them used to water while they are young. Below I will show you simple steps on how to teach your Boston Terrier to swim.

Steps For Introducing Your Boston Terrier To Water

  1. Wait until your Boston Terrier is 4-6 months old. This will ensure they are strong enough to be able to swim as well as being able to withstand variation of temperature changes.
  2. Fill your bathtub or baby pool with water. Try to keep the water room temperature because you do not want their first experience with water to be shocking.
  3. Gently place your dog in the water starting with their feet first to get used to the water. Keep doing this process until they start to do the “Dog Paddle”.
  4. Once they are used to the water you can take them to a bigger swimming pool and carefully guide them off the edge. They will more than likely immediately swim back to the edge but after several times they will begin to stay out for longer periods of time.
  5. You can then start introducing [amazon link=”B07FYGHR3T” title=”throw toys (on Amazon)” /] so they can fetch it and bring it back to you. Most Boston Terriers will really enjoy this!

Swimming Safety Measures For Your Boston Terrier

Never leave your Boston Terrier or any other dog alone in or around water while they are learning how to swim. It may be silly to think of but there are some dogs who have drowned before.

Always make sure you are with your dog while they are swimming, just as you would do with your children. Remember Boston Terriers are not naturally great and strong swimmers so they are at a more increased risk of drowning than other dogs.

Boston Terrier Swim Vest

I highly recommend investing in a dog life vest (on Amazon) which will give you some peace of mind while they are swimming in lakes and rivers.

This is because dogs can get themselves into dangerous situations where it may be difficult for them to swim out of, for example, strong currents or waves.

Your dog may also become dehydrated after swimming for long periods, so it’s important to keep them hydrated with Pedialyte or water.

Do Boston Terriers Have Webbed Feet?

No, Boston Terriers actually do not have webbed feet. Some people may say they do due to the fact that they have some skin between the toes but this is not technically considered to be “webbed feet”.

A dog such as a Labrador will have webbing between the toes that go nearly to the tip and cover the entire opening. This is what is considered to be webbed feet. A Boston Terriers webbing only goes about 1/2 to 3/4 between the toes and is not as elastic as the official webbed feet dogs mentioned below.

webbed feet
Boston Terrier Foot That Looks To Be Webbed But Is Not

List of a Few Breeds That Do Have Webbed Feet

  • Labrador retriever
  • Otterhound
  • Newfoundland
  • Wire-Haired Pointer
  • Nova Scotia Duck Retriever
  • Weimaraner
  • Chesapeake Bay Retriever

Webbed Feet dogs are able to swim much stronger and longer than non-webbed feet dogs. 

Does My Boston Terrier Swim and Like Water?

Yes, My Boston Terrier is about 8 months old and enjoys the water. He still requires an occasional nudge but we are still working with him in swimming in pools and ponds. Once the weather gets warmer we hope to get him in the water a lot more.


Thank you for reading my article on Boston Terrier Swimming.  I think it is safe to say after all of the research that yes, Boston Terriers can and do swim, but might not be able to be champion swimmers like some other breed of dogs. Some dogs just might not like it either.

If I find my dog is too tired to walk home after a swim, I always bring a small dog stroller with me so he doesn’t get too exhausted. He loves it too!

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