Rocky’s Viewpoint

Rockys Viewpoint

A blog for people who treat their dogs better than family

Why We Use Ozone (Not Chlorine) in our Pool

You may or may not know this, but we spent a year researching what type of sanitation system we wanted to use in our center’s pool. We knew chlorine was very bad, and never considered it. Chlorine is known to cause allergies and asthma, and recent research is linking it to cancer. Even if you bathe (or rinse your dog) afterward, the damage is still done. It’s especially bad for dogs (or people) with compromised immune systems because of it’s harmful effects on the immune system. Any older dog, dog recovering from surgery, dogs we figured were likely to be clients WILL have compromised immune systems. We didn’t want to do further damage to these dogs.

We briefly considered bromine, a chlorine substitute, but again, it has many of the same harmful effects as chlorine. Then we looked at salt, but felt it would be too drying to both our skin and to the dog’s skin. We also wanted a solution that didn’t require us to rinse a dog off after being in the pool. One of our core philosophies is to make sure the dog never has to leave our facility wet, unless the pet parent chooses that option. That’s why we created a “drying room.” Leaving our facility with a dry dog, and having to rinse the dog off after being in the pool just don’t mix!

After a lot of investigation, we decided on an ozone system. What is ozone? Ozone is basically active oxygen or O3. It is occurs naturally in the atmosphere. It is one of the most effective, complete bactericides available, yet is completely safe and gentle to the skin and to pool equipment.

There are two basic types of ozone systems, one that creates ozone using a UV light, and the other that uses a corona discharge system to create ozone. UV light is more common, and much less costly, but needs regular maintenance to ensure it’s operating correctly. In a UV light system, water passes by the light, which converts oxygen O2 into ozone. Problem with these systems is that microscopic particles get deposited on the light rendering it less effective as time passes. Thus the need for regular maintenance. Corona discharge systems work by passing air through a high voltage electrical charge, or corona. The ozone is then discharged into a passing water stream. Corona discharge systems are much more costly but are much more effective and require almost no maintenance.

I was reading an article on Dr. Mercola’s site (http://tinyurl.com/7mv5mtm) about the Hippocrates Health Institute in West Palm Beach, one of the world’s oldest complimentary health centers. Dr. Mercola interviewed their director, Dr. Brian Clement. The discussion centered on the dangers of the toxins we are exposed to every day. I found it interesting that they use ozone in their 8 pools because of the dangers of chlorine. He also mentioned the use of ozone in the pools in many countries with socialized medicine because it is in their best interest to keep people healthy. Dr. Clement said that ozone filters the water much better than chlorine, and has 4 or 5 times more disinfecting power! Something I didn’t know is that ozone actually has therapeutic value – when in the pool, you actually absorb a little bit of oxygen within the membrane in the skin. The more I read and learn about the dangers of chlorine I’m convinced we made the right decision. Not only for the dogs who come to us, but for ourselves as well.