Taking Your Pet Aboard

by Ian Kuhl on October 5, 2016

in Franklin Marine

Many of us have at least one faithful companion with four legs.

Going boating for the day, weekend or longer can be difficult if you haven’t got a babysitter for your little mate.

Depending on the pet and boat, it can be very rewarding taking them along with you.

Love to go sailing on a race boat dad! #shyalba #arctos #staffiegram #sailingstaffie #franklinmarina #eden #flyingfishonline

A photo posted by Franklin Marine (@franklinmarineau) on

Pets can keep big and little kids entertained for hours – especially on longer passages.

It CAN be very enjoyable, but there are several things to do to make sure everyone enjoys themselves…

Life jackets are essential to keep your pet afloat – they are available in about five sizes to fit most breeds.

You’ll find a range of pet jackets at Franklin Marine. It’s best to bring your pet in for a fitting if you’re looking to buy one, to ensure it’ll stay on and do its job.

Life jackets have a handle on the top so are very handy for getting your pet in and out of dinghies and boats.

They are also great for tethering the pet so they can’t fall or jump overboard.

I once had a big staffy on our boat up the barrier reef. We were motoring along on a smooth day when some interested dolphins were right beside us jumping out of the water.

It was a red rag to a bull for the staffy, who straight away went to lunge at the dolphins pushing in on his territory.

Fortunately, he hit the mid life line and bounced back.

A dog harness is a good alternative if a life jacket is too hot.

When the going gets rough or there’s too much action on deck, put your pet below in a secure spot where they don’t slide around and won’t be a trip hazard.

Obviously, they will need to go to the loo somewhere.

We trained our dog to do its business next to the anchor winch, so it was easy to take care of when we pulled the anchor up and washed off the mud from the chain.

A dog will want to go ashore whenever possible, and I have definitely been to more beaches when travelling with a dog than without one.

Tassie east coast beach walk with Loui#sailngstaffy#tasmania #franklinmarine #hobartandbeyond #staffiegram #beachwalks

A photo posted by Franklin Marine (@franklinmarineau) on

Cats can be a little easier in some ways – they can use kitty litter trays and are easier to toilet train.

Some cats will jump ashore by themselves if given the chance and it can be hard finding them again, especially in the bush.

National parks can be difficult, but if you stay below high water mark on the beach with the pet on a lead you should be right.

In saying that, it would of course be best to check with the parks to save any unnecessary drama.

Food and water are their usuals from home – and our dog often got some fresh fish as a bonus.

Hopefully these tips will make your (and your pet’s) life much easier next time you take your four legged friend aboard. Do you have any other tips that you’d like to share? Please post them as a comment if you do – other readers will see and benefit from them!

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