Meet Kate Griffin, Certified Canine Swim Coach
Kate is the owner and swim coach. She loves dogs and has had dogs her entire life. She’s had the idea of opening an indoor pool for dogs since 2009. During that time, she had an old and arthritic labrador, Sophie. After trying different pain meds and acupuncture she drove Sophie to Portland to meet with a canine physical therapist. The therapist told her one of the best things she could do for Sophie was to get her swimming… in warm water. This was early April and we all know how cold the waters are in Maine.
In order to learn more about dogs’ anatomy and different ailments and conditions, she became certified as a Veterinary Assistant and worked under Dr. Jim Laurita and Dr. Stacey Contakos at The Camden Hospital for Animals for 2.5 years. During this time, she knew she wanted to help dogs feel better. She continued researching the benefits of warm water swimming and saw the need for something like this here in midcoast Maine. In June of 2014, she became a graduate of La Paw Spa’s Aquatic Training Program Level One & Two. In April/May 2016, Kate went out to British Columbia for more extensive training with Greyfriars from the U.K. She is certified in canine CPR & first aid. She is a member of the Association of Canine Water Therapy (ACWT). She also served a term on the Executive Board of Trustees for P.A.W.S. Animal Adoption Center in Camden/Rockport.
Kate is a native Mainer and is a graduate of both Ohio Wesleyan University (B.A.) and the University of Maine (M.A.T.). She taught K-8 French for many years in the midcoast community.
- Tuesday – 9am – 5pm
- Wednesday – 10am – 5pm
- Thursday – 9am – 5pm
- Friday – 10am – 5pm
- Saturday – 8am – 12pm (late fall, winter and spring only)
- Sunday – Closed
- Monday – Closed
First time Single Swim appointments are 45 minutes long and are $65. This extra time allows for your dog to become familiar with the place and with Kate. We will go over your paperwork and get in some pool time.
All following sessions are about 40 minutes and are $65. This allows for 25 minutes of swim time and 15 minutes to rinse and towel/blow dry.
Single Swim: $65 (every 10th session is $10 off)
Single Swim Package: 5 swims for $300 (save $25). 10 swims for $585 (save $65) Must be used within 4 months of purchase. Paid in advance.
Double Swim**: (dogs of the same household): $75 (every 10th session is $10 off)
Double Swim Package: 5 swims for $355 (save $20). 10 swims for $690 (save $60). Must be used within 4 months of purchase. Paid in advance.
“Swim Date”**: This is a new option! 2 friends + 2 dogs and the dogs get to swim in the pool together with Kate. $80 ($40 per person)
Puppy Swim: $35 This is a mini session designed to help make your puppy more comfortable around the water and in the water. This is for puppies ages 10 weeks – 8 months. This appt will last about 30-35 minutes with 15 minutes designated around and in the pool.
Puppy Swim Package: 4 swims for $130 (save $10). Must be used before your puppy is 9 months old. Paid in advance.
**Since safety is a top priority, Kate does need to see each dog for a private single session in order to assess their swimming style. If she feels the dogs are capable to safely swim together, then double swim/swim date appts can be scheduled!
All prices are subject to change without notice. Cash, checks and major credit cards accepted. Payment is due at time of service.
Rules & Policies
Dogs must be current on Rabies vaccination and cleared by their veterinarian to start a swim program. WBW can fax over the form to your veterinarian or you can bring it to your veterinarian to fill out.
Dogs must be kept on a leash upon entering and exiting Water Bark Wellness and while on the property. WBW is located between an animal hospital and a dog park and route 1 is very close. A lot of distractions, so leashes are an absolute must.
Dogs who are being treated for kennel cough will not be allowed to swim until they have been cleared by their veterinarian.
Do not feed your dog 2-4 hours before swimming.
All dogs must relieve themselves prior to swimming.
Dogs must remain in the pool during their swim. There are benches and a ramp where your dog(s) can take rest breaks.
Brush your dog thoroughly before your appointment.
Arrive early in order to give your dog plenty of time to do his/her business. WBW has a designated grassy and wooded area towards the back of the building. There is a doggy receptacle with disposal aids provided to clean up after your dog.
There will be a “poop fee” of $200 if your dog happens to poop in the pool. The reason for this is because the pool will need to be cleaned & disinfected. This takes time and is a lot of work. During this time, all appointments for the next 24 to 48 hours will have to be rescheduled.
No topical flea products should be applied to your dog within 7 days of your appointment. If your dog comes in to swim and there’s an obvious area where it has been recently treated, your appointment will be rescheduled. If your dog has fleas, your dog will not be allowed to swim.
Appointments are private from start to finish. When you arrive with your dog, please walk him/her around on leash to go to the bathroom. Once your dog has done its business, please put him/her back in your car. To ensure the comfort and safety of all dogs, we ask that you first come into the building alone. At that time, I will let you know when to bring in your dog.
Please call at least 24 hours in advance if you need to reschedule your appointment so we can try to fill your existing appointment slot. Kate will send you a text, email or call the day before your dog’s swim, to confirm your upcoming swim. There will be a fee of $25 for no-shows.
Disclaimer – Swim sessions consist of activities such as swimming, stretching, floating and gentle touch in the warm waters of the pool and that each session is dependent on things such as the condition and age of the dog, the goals of the owner, the nature of the dog’s injury (if any) and how the dog emotionally reacts to the water.
Water Bark Wellness is not a licensed veterinarian facility. In compliance with Maine State Law, Water Bark Wellness does not diagnose or cure specific ailments, perform surgery or prescribe medications. Swimming is not a replacement for proper veterinary care and that any injuries or diseases must be medically diagnosed and treated by the dog’s veterinarian. A complete history is necessary for accurate treatment of any kind and that participation by the owner/handler is essential to achieving beneficial results.
Water Bark Wellness is not responsible for any damages to others or to any property caused by the owner’s/handler’s dog. Water Bark Wellness is not responsible for any injuries or illnesses incurred by the owner/handler or his/her dog as a result of the use of the pool, facility or property. Payment is due in full at the time treatment and appointments need to be canceled at least 24 hours in advance so we may try to fill your existing appointment slot.