These dog companions are never happier than when they are splashing around in the sea, a river, a lake or a loch.
If you’ve been thinking about getting a new dog then you’re not alone – Kennel Club figures show that the number of people looking for puppies has surged to a record high in the last few years.
But with 221 different breeds of pedigree dog to choose from, there’s plenty of thinking to do before you select your family’s latest four-legged addition – whether you want a a large dog, family-friendly dog, or crossbreed.
There’s even academic guidance to seek out, with Psychologist Stanley Coren’s book ‘The Intelligence of Dogs’ ranking breeds by instincts, obedience, and the ability to adapt.
But if you want a pup that is equally at home in the water as on land, then there are certain dogs that should top your wish list
Here are 10 of the breeds that are born to swim, according to the American Kennel Club.
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An incredibly rare breed, the Otterhound was, as its name suggests, used to hunt otters in Britain until the practice was outlawed in 1978. An exceptionally strong swimmer, they even have webbed feet for extra speed in the water. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
2. Labrador Retriever
THe UK's most popular dog breed, the Labrador Retriever was bred to collect shot wildfowl that often landed in the water, so being a good swimmer was crucial. Today Labs are happy to fetch sticks and balls from water for hours on end. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
3. Portuguese Water Dog
Another breed that has webbed feet perfect for swimming, the Portuguese Water Dog was used by fishermen to herd fish into nets and collect lost equipment from the sea. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
4. Lagotto Romagnolo
An ancient breed though to be the canine from which all water dogs are descended, the Lagotto Romagnolo is now prized for its ability to sniff out precious truffles. Photo: Canva/Getty Images