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Dogs on Boats
|Author||Topic: Dogs on Boats|
posted 05-30-2002 11:45 PM ET (US)
I've been married to my wife for 11 years now. She's a Veterinarian. Got a puppy in december (West Highland White Terrier) and for the first time I have a boat and a dog! I'm thinking - great excuse to go out on the boat more. I can say "Honey, Lilly keeps jumping in the boat, looks like I got to take her out for a ride". The thing is, how do I make the dog like the boat? Right now, the second I put her in the boat she wants nothing to do with it and tries to jump out. Help me out here guys.
posted 05-31-2002 12:41 AM ET (US)
Your wife should know! However,I have a mini beagle and she did the same thing! What I did was take her favorite treat(the fake bacon) and rubed it along the deck and hid it in the center of the boat a few times. Now she loves to be in it. As soon as we get to the dock she makes a bee line and jumps right into the boat.When I'm home and mention "the boat" she's at the door expecting to go for a ride!
posted 05-31-2002 12:59 AM ET (US)
I bet once the dog jumps overboard once or twice, she'll like it much better onboard. My dog jumped overboard one time in his early Whaler days to chase after a nearby pelican. He doesn't do that anymore.......
posted 05-31-2002 01:23 AM ET (US)
No pelicans up here(Gloucester,Ma) But once she saw a humpback whale,and started to bark at it! The whale came over to the side of the boat and they were eye to (big)eye! I think she was trying to figure out how to smell the whale's you-know-what! But after the whale sprayed us with it's blow hole, the dog "flew" into the cabin!
posted 05-31-2002 03:05 AM ET (US)
Jay your right, she should know but if I ask her then she'll also know my little secret. Anyway, you guys seem so exotic. Humpback whales and pelicans. Other posts have people talking about alligators and sharks in the boat. Here on Lake Michigan my dog might go after a duck! But I can still catch salmon with the best of you (almost). How many of you other Whalers take pets onboard. Anybody have a cat? John
posted 05-31-2002 03:20 AM ET (US)
One of the best ways to get a dog to like a boat is to get a Labrador. Another good way is to get a Chesapeake Bay retriever.
Then, during the proper season with the required permits, put this proper kind of dog into the proper kind of boat, which might at times be a canoe or a jonboat but often will be a Whaler. Well before dawn, navigate to some likely area, and at sunup shoot a duck or a goose, or better yet, shoot several of the aforementioned lifeforms.
The dog will then rapidly fly its hull out of the boat and into the water, and return to the vessel with the dispatched fowl. Upon being hoisted back into the Whaler, the dog will deposit the victim in the Whaler and vigorously shake water over everything in the boat.
After this experience, any proper dog will give you no peace whenever you even think about hitching your Whaler to the back of your truck. However, it is likely to make a terrible fishing companion, as it will be inclined to want to retrieve not only your fish but your bait or lure as well on every cast.
I didn't learn this in vet school, but the vet school I attended was in the Deep South, where they assume you already know this, and where Westies are banned.
posted 05-31-2002 08:07 AM ET (US)
Another question regarding dogs-on-board: how badly does the dog's nails/claws scratch up the gel coat?
posted 05-31-2002 08:13 AM ET (US)
I think I have the right boat 1972 21' Outrage, as for the right dog, I define that as any dog my better-half and twin girls desire. Besides, Westies act like their in 100 lb. bodies. Does anybody else have non-proper dogs?
posted 05-31-2002 08:24 AM ET (US)
Don't worry about the dog's nails on the gelcoat.
posted 05-31-2002 09:22 AM ET (US)
Still working on the boat and dog training myself. We have and English and an American Cocker. The Boy dog loved the boat from day one and stood on the bow with my wife restraining him from jumping in while underway. He loves the wind blowing his ears up. I plan on anchoring or beaching the boat and let him jump in for a swim with a doggie life vest and some sort of lead clipped on him, as he likes to cruise around to look for chicks. The Girl dog doesnít really like the boat but will sit quietly at my feet.
Their nails donít hurt the Gel coat or cushions
posted 05-31-2002 09:39 AM ET (US)
I second Mudpuppy's response, but respectfully add Golden Retriever to the list. Dogs (at least large ones) love boats. Soon as a cooler or boat keys come out, they know it's boat time. Riding up on the bow is like having their head out the window in the car, nothing better. Scratches from nails are not an issue, but fur in the bilge sump is a reality. As for the terrier, keep the boat very slow at first, and let him build up confidence. When he starts roaming around, checking out stuff, he's getting more comfortable. Bring along his toys, snacks, etc. Good luck!
posted 05-31-2002 09:58 AM ET (US)
My dog was pretty scared first time out. 100lbs of shivering pudelpointer camped out on my feet behind the console. It has sunk into him that the boat in in WATER, and now he is a huge fan.
If you can tie up to a dock, and just let him roam for a while, I think he will take to it. I think the combo of the motion and the slick deck might take some getting used to.
Anyone figure out how to break a dog form drinking saltwater? i would pay big buck for that cure. It ruinsd the poor guy for the rest of the day.
posted 05-31-2002 10:37 AM ET (US)
No dogs allowed on my boats unless they are topless or pay for gas:)
I had a Westie and she would get seasick, hated the boat, actually that dog hated everything and I mean everything.
I had a wolf and he also hated the boat, would pace back and forth constantly and drool. The wind would catch the drool and spray it all over when running....way gross. He would bail at gas docks, etc. I took him out the barnegat inlet in my 15'and got some good air and from then on he just sat on the bench next to me. Just to piss him off, I would occasionally throw him overboard(he hated water). He was VERY relieved when I got my 21' Scarab. He just lounged on the back seat. Still hated water though.
posted 05-31-2002 10:58 AM ET (US)
My mini-schnauzer loves going for rides on our 13'. Then again, his knobs go to eleven.
posted 05-31-2002 12:47 PM ET (US)
I have 2 Labs that LOVE the Montauk. It is almost impossible to keep them off the bow. Tongues out, ears flapping, hair flying...its a funny sight! I keep 'em on a short leash, though, for obvious reasons. No problem with the gel coat...its the bow locker they rip apart. I had to compromise between my love for the dogs, and my love of the varnish on the bow locker. I ended up keeping a pair of dog nail clippers on board. Its also fun to see them slide around. heh,heh,heh...
As for fishing...only once. I can't keep them out of the baitwell, and pacific halibut pack a mean bite.
posted 05-31-2002 12:48 PM ET (US)
When I was all of 4, we got our first dog that I could remember. One of the first times she went down to the boat following dad, she fell in the water between the houseboat and the floating dock. This is ironic since they are both at the same level, and both 15" above the water 8" apart. Fortunately, even at 9 weeks, she knew how to swim. (too bad kids don't). After that, she never did like water, but man was she ever annoyed if you went out in the boat without her!! She hated water, and loved boating! It didn't matter if it was the 11' daysailor, or the 15' runabout, or the houseboat. I even took her along in the Zodiac when I was in high school. Ultimately, she nearly drowned one trip out in the houseboat while I was in college when she fell overboard w/o anyone noticing. Fortunately, even at 17 years old, she could still swim, depsite hating water. She got picked up by a local TV weatherman, who tracked my parents down by the rabies tag on the collar. Even that didn't stop her love of boating, although we made sure we kept a better eye on her to be sure she didn't fall overboard again. Some dogs just like to go boating.... I still think it's better if they don't like to swim, because they don't jump overboard all the time.
Anyone taken their cat boating?? My wife wants to take them along after we get a sailboat. This should be interesting...
posted 05-31-2002 12:50 PM ET (US)
I think the question the dog is asking itself is 'Will this be fun'?
We have a one year old Irish Water Spaniel, and the first time in the boat it was choppy and the dog was terrified. She was shaking and trying to hide between me and the console. Some water spaniel. Next time out we stopped and she got to play on the beach. Next time out she threw herself in the water as we approached the beach. Her first time swimming. Now whenever I get the boat out of the boathouse she's down there ready to go.
Oh... I hear that those doggie life jackets that I think look so dumb do in fact have a useful feature, that is the handle on the back to hoist the dog back in the boat.
posted 05-31-2002 12:54 PM ET (US)
Where2: Cats can swim just fine too. How I know is too long a story. They like it on boats just fine, but generally below while underway and on deck while at anchor. I think an open boat like a whaler is not a good fit for a cat. Neither is a kayak, but that's getting into that long story.
posted 05-31-2002 01:19 PM ET (US)
My cats are inside cats so I can't comment. When I did get our 1st cat I took it out on my Hydra-Sport and she just laid on the console....scared to death.
Another time I found a stray at the yacht club and took it home on my Baja. It initial climbed into the cabin but I did not want it to pee in there so I stopped. The cat came out and jumped onto the dash and laid in front of the steering wheel on the guages. The faster I went the more the cat would peek it's head above the windshield into the wind. When I broke 60mph she was almost standing and I slowed worrying she would fly away:) My friend has that cat and it is WAY cool.
posted 05-31-2002 01:23 PM ET (US)
Took a friend's Persian cat out on the Whaler last summer. The thing was terrified and hid under the raised console all day, with it's tongue hanging out, panting like a dog.
posted 05-31-2002 02:13 PM ET (US)
My dream duck dog DON'T HUNT! I've got a lab, son of a National field champion....thought he would be the (pardon the expression, Jed) the cat's ass for hunting ducks and grouse.
Turns out he has a disease called "Labrador Retriever muscle myopathy" (canine equivilant of Musclar distrophy). Can't take the cold water. Tried to take him hunting once and I ended up going in after him. He got the duck but got tangled in a decoy cord.
Anyway, with his high bred genes, he is so driven to water and retreiving that he tries to bite at the wake and jumps in after casted fishing lures. Such a pain that I don't take him any more.
posted 05-31-2002 03:07 PM ET (US)
I'll add Newfoundland to the list of appropriate
breeds. I've got two Newfies. The Montauk is named
Black Dog, and the truck license is NEWF NUT.
posted 05-31-2002 03:16 PM ET (US)
My English Setter Mandy(2 years old) just loves riding and fishing in my Currituck, she runs from the front to the back all day long and puts her paws as far out on the bow as she can, sometimes she falls overboard, but she just swims to the back of the boat and I pull her in. She shakes off the water and runs right back to the bow of the boat again!!! She like to try to bite the Fish when I catch them, but I don`t let her. She loves the boat and the water, it is a great combination. Jack.
posted 05-31-2002 03:16 PM ET (US)
Our german shepherd loves the boat. Spends most of his time either laying at our feet right behind the console or in the stern with his head hanging over the gunwale trying to get a drink of the wake.
posted 05-31-2002 03:25 PM ET (US)
As far as the dogs getting enough traction so they don't damage the gelcoat or themselves (or the teak), I took a radical approach. As I bought the Whaler mostly to have a couple of big dogs aboard (when they weren't actually boarding, disembarking, or fetching), I carpeted the interior of my 15. Used marine grade carpeting from West Marine, tailored it to fit with the help of a very skilled friend (actually I mostly watched him do it), tucked the edge under the rubrail, and glued it in. Don't be too horrified--it came out great and serves its purposes (camoflague and grip for the dogs) very well. Even looks good too, but it's no longer classic. I'll post some pics soon on cetacea or can email them to interested parties.
Cats on board are very bad karma, like banannas on fishing boats.
posted 05-31-2002 03:40 PM ET (US)
Chuck, with a couple of Newfies aboard, some tanks and a diving buddy you must be pretty close to the weight limit on that Montauk :)
Anyone know how to keep the dogs (and kids) from circling endlessly around the boat while underway? Makes keeping level tough.
|BOB KEMMLER JR||
posted 05-31-2002 03:49 PM ET (US)
I take my jack russel terrier out and he has a habit of jumping off and trying to catch any bird thats close,and he doesnt care how fast we are going when he does it.
posted 05-31-2002 03:58 PM ET (US)
My wife's English Mastiff is not allowed near any of the boats. Her head is higher than the gunnel of the 13 Sport on a trailer on the outside looking in. I do like the dog though, perhaps it's because she weighs more than I do:) Regards, Jay
posted 05-31-2002 09:51 PM ET (US)
I heard a wild story about dogs and boats. It is secondhand, so I dont know the people personally (it might be a tall tale).
A family from the midwest came to visit friends north of Seattle, up on Lopez Island. They took a private boat out to tour the islands, and ended up seeing a pod of orcas. The families cocker spaniel went nuts barking at the orcas, and ended up jumping into the water. While the dog was swimming in puget sound, an orca surfaced and swallowed him in two quick bites (orcas are famous for their seal appetites). Might want to keep fido tied down.
posted 05-31-2002 10:52 PM ET (US)
We adopted an English Cocker Spaniel (Murphy)when she was 3 years old. She had never been a boat so we didn't know how she would react. When we were ready for our first outing the wife said that if the dog didn't go she wasn't going. Could have got off the hook very easily there.
We took the dog, the dog loved the boat and was a pleasure to have aboard. After that first trip she goes crazy when I start to hook up to the trailer.
We told her previous owners about the incident and they said she was a great swimmer, they couln't keep her out of their swimming pool.
Now that she has taken over as captain of the boat it has been named Murphy Girl in her honor. I don't realy mind my new position as first mate, the wife was lucky though, she is still the resident book reader.
Take the wife, take a kid, take a dog or all three. Just make sure all enjoy the outing.
posted 06-01-2002 12:02 AM ET (US)
The newfies stay home when I go diving. I
worry about them jumping in while I'm on
the bottom and they couldn't get back in.
At the lake, Beau stands on the bow like a
figurehead. Abby just sleeps.
Many years ago, my late wife and I rented
Yes, Vette owners, he was named after THAT Zora.
posted 06-01-2002 12:09 AM ET (US)
As for getting the dog to stop drinking salt water -- my dog (a mutt) drank his heart content with salt water during one of his first trips to the beach as a puppy. He was pretty sick on the way home, and urinated frequently. I'm sure he was sick to his stomach. From that point on, he never drank salt water again (aside from a taste test here and there in search of fresh water).
On another topic - I had a lab with me crabbing one time, and she would always want to retrieve the trap buoys. When I'd bring up the traps, she'd also bite the crab head on, rip it apart, and eat it. These are Dungeness Crabs......the shell has to be at least 6" wide to be legal. Their pinchers didn't bother her one bit.
posted 06-01-2002 02:06 AM ET (US)
I have two Rotties, my next dog will be a Schipperke. They are relatively small dogs and are excellent boat dogs! Of my two Rotties, one likes the boat the other will have nothing to do with it. I once had Dulce (Water dog) down at the boat on a rainy day to check on the bilge pump etc. She went hauling butt down the dock made the turn down the finger to the boat and slid sideway's off the dock into the water. I had to grab her by the collar and lift 105 Lbs of dog back onto the dock out of the 50 degree water. She was not happy and neither was my back. It was then that I decided my next dog would be a dog bred for boats and water.
The guy that lived on his sailboat two berths down from mine had a Schipperke. Great little dog that lived on his boat and would actually help him sail it. I would stick with a small water dog if I was starting from scratch.
Only advice I can give about an existing dog is to get it on the boat as much as possible. Just like housebreaking it may soil the deck to begin with but it will eventually learn the ropes.
posted 06-01-2002 02:06 AM ET (US)
My first Chesapeake only ever stole one boat unless you count canoes--had a habit of chewing mooring lines at the lake. Came in with the bowline of a jonboat one time, jonboat still attached.
posted 06-01-2002 09:11 AM ET (US)
Our 12 year old Golden Retriever (Cassie) LOVES the boat. All I have to do is pick up the boat keys or say the magic words "Boat Ride" and she is out the door, on the dock, and into the boat like she was shot from a cannon.
She loves to sit on the bow cushion with ears flying except at lower speeds when the bow rise is too high...then she hangs on for dear life (our bow cushion has some nice dog toenail marks in it)...or she heads for the side, sticks her head over the gunnel and tries to bite the water. Once we've been out for a while, she just lays down by the stern jump seats and chills out. I think she would spend 24 hours/day on the boat if we let her...we have to beg her to get off...usually takes a bribe with a dog treat.
posted 06-01-2002 10:11 AM ET (US)
triblet: et al
ahh yes!! ..." that Zora!" ...as in Zora Arkus Duntov! his 30-30 cam in my mechanical lifter 365 horse...makes beautiful music!
also, don't go through life without a water dog! everybody needs one! lm
posted 06-02-2002 08:53 PM ET (US)
Dogs on a boat, now we have a topic I really know something about. I travel every weekend with 3 cocker spaniels and now an additional dachshund (took her in with my mother's recent passing). All four dogs must come aboard the 22' OR for boating. A few pointers for those considering boating with dog(s). First, always take fresh water plus a plastic bowl to pour it into. We chill our water in a 1.5L bottle. Dogs need plenty of fresh water while boating. 2nd, take a leash for each dog-helps if you stop at a marina. 3rd, keep an eye on the dog(s) while under way. We've had each of our 3 cocker spaniels go overboard over the years. Seems they spot pelicans etc or dolphins and jump or get knocked by the other dogs into the water. When you lose a dog over board, simply do a 180 and follow your prop line back toward where the dog may have gone into the water. Our dogs reject being picked up by other boaters-swim away and wait for us to return. I guess they figure they have it good. 4th, with regard to the gel coat part of the post, the dogs nails do not scrape it up-no problem. However, the nails do scrape the teak in my Outrages gunwales. They scrape varnish, oil but to a lessor degree the Starbrite Teak Sealer. Since my gunwales take one hell of a beating between dogs - saltwater from water sports - fishing etc., I've found the teak sealer to be the best way to go. 5th, oh, we have both female and male spaniels- so if you have an in heat female, best she be left behind- the one exception I'm permitted to taking all four dogs. 6th, the dachshund has been an interesting case for those of you who have nonwater type dogs. Dachshunds are dirt dogs basically, pull badgers,rats etc out of holes. Not what you would think of as a boating dog. We picked up an orange life vest for dogs at the mall pet shop. Figure the dog does not swim, at least not like a cocker spaniel. The dachshund just loves boating in the vest. She stands up on the bow step with the older cocker, ears flying in the breeze. I have a friend with a French Bull dog (a brick) who is going to try a vest for the dog after watching how our dachshund has taken to boating. 7th, don't let the dogs drink saltwater out of the rear transom well be/c they will quickly barf big time with the clean up being a mess. Well, that's about it. Dogs are an interesting item on Whalers. Enjoyed it. .03 David
posted 06-03-2002 12:34 PM ET (US)
We have a Scottish Terrier who has lived aboard our sailboat with us since she was 8 months old. She has close to 4,000 miles at sea under her collar. The Whaler (13) is by far her favorite boat.
In terms of "sea dogs" I would put a Scotty, (and Westie too) pretty high on the list of perfect dogs. They have a low center of gravity, and four legs, a great combination in rough weather. In addition, they arenít that fond of water, so they wonít intentionally jump in.
When sailing we always keep Molly in a lifejacket, and clipped to the boat. In the Whaler we are a little more relaxed. When she figured out that the Whaler is what took her to the beach, and at the beach she got to chase her ball off leash, well anytime we look like weíre getting in the Whaler, she goes nuts.
posted 06-03-2002 02:58 PM ET (US)
Chuck - I recently saw a very interesting documentary on the Animal Channel about Newfoundlands. They are being trained, somewhere, (where they speak with a British accent) quite effectively, as swimming rescue dogs to tow people in trouble to shore. If you haven't seen the show, maybe you can catch a re-run. It was about two weeks ago.
posted 06-03-2002 04:03 PM ET (US)
Glad to hear someone thinks a Westie might make a proper "sea dog" I was starting to wonder. Lilly too, loves to chase the ball and as for water - she didn't have much to do with me for a couple of days she helped me put the dock in. I guess the water was too cold or too deep when I coaxed her off the end. Will try again when the water is warmer.
posted 06-03-2002 07:37 PM ET (US)
There are reasons that there are so many different--really different--breeds of dogs. Everybody has different tastes, and I respect that.
But let's come back to reality. A "perfect sea dog" doesn't need a life jacket, doesn't need to be coaxed into the water, and doesn't need to be clipped to the boat.
posted 06-03-2002 10:20 PM ET (US)
Does that mean that you don't make use of a pfd or a kill switch? Or, if you do, aren't your dogs worthy of the same. I've been looking for "perfect" all my life, and only came close once thanks to my wife. Everything else I try to make the best of.
posted 06-04-2002 11:44 AM ET (US)
I read your response with regards to the perfect dog and reality. It seemed like a verbal attack on the "Rare Island Scotty", and it's cousin the "High Seas Westie" and their adaptability to high seas travel.
All I can say is real Whaler owners don't carpet their boats.
Get a real dog!
posted 06-04-2002 12:02 PM ET (US)
We have 3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels ... and the older two have been on our Montauk and love it! Well, maybe what they really love is barking at the birds ...
posted 06-04-2002 02:29 PM ET (US)
John, We have three Westies. They are afraid of almost everything right up until they attack.... I have heared that they sink rather than swim. (not much fat to float them) Don't know if that is true but one of mine fell in the fish pond in backyard and didn't swim well. Glad I was there to pull her out.
posted 06-04-2002 07:34 PM ET (US)
Hoop- Bird dogs (spaniels) and boats go together. I am told they will swim up to 7 hours in open water if they must do so. Pelicans drive them nuts, ducks they note but could care less, it is the DREADED BLUE HERON over which they pile out of the boat or fall off our sea wall. David
posted 06-05-2002 03:11 PM ET (US)
Black Lab is the word. We had trouble one time with ours, when a trolling board came by going the other direction. Out he went after it. After much laughter from the other boat, they radioed say they released a dog fish. Lake Michigan was cold, but did't bother old Bear. The dog loves water and Whaler rides.Mike
posted 06-07-2002 06:04 AM ET (US)
I have to agree; the only proper dog for me and my boats is a Lab, and the only proper color is black. But my other two--yellows--take exception to that. May the rest of you dog lovers who have made other choices enjoy them--for now I'll stick with a Lab. Black and strong, like coffee.
posted 06-07-2002 08:43 AM ET (US)
A yellow...mu favorite dog ever made for h2o. Lotsa, lotsa hair tho.
posted 06-07-2002 09:26 AM ET (US)
While eating a sandwich at a local waterfront cafe (Inlet Harbour) here in the Daytona Beach, Fla. area, I saw a marine patrol boat pulling away from a small crowd and asked the waiter what the fuss was all about and he responded that a family had just pulled up to the floating dock and had a dog aboard. A marine patrol officer, having lunch, got up and wrote them a ticket for not having a life preserver on the dog! Officer told them that any pet must have a preserver! I haven't checked as to specific law but if I carried a pet aboard I certainly would. Do they make preservers for parakeets????? Happy Pet Whalin'... Clark.. Spruce Creek Navy
posted 06-07-2002 09:34 AM ET (US)
After starting a thread about being ticked for standing while underway a couple days ago I was continually surprised by the other seemingly rediculous laws. That one takes the cake. Now I know we as a society have gone completely mad. Life preservers on dogs? Good grief!!
posted 06-07-2002 01:20 PM ET (US)
My parents have a Portuguese Water Dog. It is incredibly confortable on a boat, agile, and poised. Looks like a large, black poodle, but very graceful. No fur, just hair so it does not shed.
Funny part is that is can't swim worth a damn!
posted 06-07-2002 02:02 PM ET (US)
I understand why some people want to put life jackets on their dogs. I'm a little worried about their sanity too, however. But its their dog, their boat, their life jacket. Plus, some dogs don't swim very well, and I mentioned above that the handle is nice to pull a dog back aboard.
But I cannot see how society has a vested interest in whether or not *my* dog wears a life jacket. She's just a dog. Keep in mind that Animal Control puts dogs to sleep by the hundreds (if not more) every day.
-Taylor (who will continue to stand at the console next to his life jacket free dog, and further, I'll probably have a beer nearby too... god bless Canada!)
posted 06-07-2002 02:12 PM ET (US)
Just kidding, I will of course abide by all applicable laws, ashore or afloat, to the letter. I'll probably even tell my dogs to go get pet licenses one of these days, too.
posted 06-08-2002 01:28 AM ET (US)
We don't have any direct experience with parakeets, but I've never known a bird to sink while it's being transported by a Labrador. Just food for thought, so to speak.
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