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Thread: Dogs and Vinyl

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    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    96

    Dogs and Vinyl

    We built a gunite pool seven years ago at our last house. Loved it but moved. Now we are thinking about putting a pool in at the new house. We are in Massachusetts so the pool adds little value to our home but a lot to our lives.

    The builder we are leaning towards does both vinyl over concrete and gunite. There is a $15k difference between gunite with a pebble finish and vinyl for pool/spa combo.

    Gunite was great but our pebble finish (wet edge) was rough despite my brushing. Our two labs don't swim but like to lounge on the steps. I know people often warn if dogs ripping vinyl but the builder has never had it happen in 20 years. I was just hoping to hear some experiences and thoughts. We have also looked at fiberglass but I just am not sure.

    Also, I'd love to hear any build stories from Massachusetts. We used South Shore Gunite last time. They build a good pool but we had some issues along the way which left me feeling a bit out of the loop at times. Thanks for any thoughts and help.


    Building 20x40 free-form pool; pebble sheen, caretaker in floor, swg, intelliflo pump, heater. Sundance 800 spa happily in use. More to come!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    Silver Spring, MD
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    37,879

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    Welcome to TFP!

    While it is possible for a dog to claw their way through a vinyl liner, is is quite rare. A dog would normally need to claw at a single small area for some time to get through.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Rick H's Avatar
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    Jan 2013
    Location
    Liverpool, NY
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    45

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    Welcome! You will find this forum very helpful, I surely have. We had the same concern when purchasing our pool, as our Lab loves the water. We ended up going with a fiberglass pool, and we have been very happy. We tell everyone that we bought the pool for our dog! I have found the maintenance, when combined with the BBB method, to be simple. A few minutes a day, at most. As with any kind of pool, there are positives and negatives, and I think many can be attributed to the pool builder. Good luck!
    Upstate/Central New York. Roman style IG fiberglass pool, 13X33, 8800 gallons, installed July 2012. Pentair cartridge filter, 1 hp Pentair single speed pump. Taylor K2006 Test kit. Went BBB route in spring of 2013, no problems, no regrets!!!!!!

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    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Canada
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    14

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    I have never seen a dog rip a liner. The best thing to do is the first time they go into the pool guide them to the stairs so they know thats where to get in and out.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    Location
    Sebring, Florida
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    30,084

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    I showed my dog the steps her first time in and she has been swimming constantly almost for the last several years....no problems.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    96

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    Thanks for all of the great responses! I used this site frequently with our old pool and bought the test kit. It is really a wealth of knowledge. Part of me wants to go with vinyl due to cost and we like the builder. For the savings, we can do more with the lawn and if we are looking down the road at a liner change, maybe we'll be ready for a change in look then. Who knows. The same installer also recently started doing gunite and does beautiful work, so either way the job will likely be his.

    I like the thought of fiberglass for some reasons, but worry for other reasons. First, it is likely we'll hit some ledge when we build. I feel we have more flexibility with gunite or vinyl to make changes based on what we find. Second, I have read some horror stories along with the good reports. Lastly, I don't like that the company we would most likely use plumbs the spa as a completely separate unit, filter and all. To me this just means more work testing and maintaining water. It also confuses me because the offer a spillover, so the water does mix.

    Our oldest lab is 6 and has already had acl surgery on both rear knees. I am thinking water therapy is in his future! The 2 year old is a ball dog. I am guessing once we get the pool she will be in. My sense is if we go vinyl I will look for a complimentary color to the liner in the composite/fiberglass steps rather than the vinyl covered steps. Just seems to be the more practical option. But, it could go gunite. We meet with another builder this week as well as a landscaper who works with the builder I like to get a sense of what to do in our backyard over time.

    So looking forward to hearing more from everyone and I love reading all of these posts. Thanks so much!

    Kim

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    May 2010
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    SW Louisiana
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    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    No problems here with dogs in vinyl liner pool

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Nashville, TN
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    359

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    We have 2 dogs that I don't anticipate getting in the pool but we are going with fiberglass/plastic steps in the event they do get in or decide they want to lounge in the heat of the summer.


    18x36 Vinyl, sports depth, 8' Roman steps at each end. Hayward 1.5hp 2speed pump, catridge filter, 2 skimmers, no main drain, 3 SR Smith Treo LED lights

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Maryland
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    400

    Re: Dogs and Vinyl

    I have a large golden retriever, he gets in the pool, swims around and gets out with no issues. He never attempts to get out other than on the steps. What we did was, as he would swim towards a side we would encourage him back to the steps.

    Now, here is one thing that I think is important. In our deepend we put a doggie ramp. It is portable, we only put it in when he is in. Honestly, he never uses it as he always goes to the steps but he is 10 years old so we worry about him tuckering out in the deepend and this is a safety net for him.
    DIY 18x36 IG Vinyl Rectangle with 2 foot radius; Steel Walls. 8' steps w/t 2 step jets; 2 MD, 1 Skimmer, 2 returns; Hayward Pro Series 24 Inch 300# Sand Pool ; Hayward color logic 4.0 LED light; 2" PVC pipe 4 Jandy Valves, Hayward PL-P-4, SWCG

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