Keeping Your Dog Safe Onboard Your Boat
Summer is here and if you plan to take your dog for a cruise, the following safety tips can make you and your pet more comfortable and secure while on the lake, in the bay or off shore.
1. Visit the boat with your pet prior to your trip. Let your dog get acquainted with the boat before going out on the water.
2. Bring a first-aid kit. The Humane Society of The United States suggests you bring an antibiotic ointment for minor scrapes and have a good supply of any medications your dog may require.
3. Check local laws about dogs and boats. Regulations can vary by state and if you plan to enter international waters, research laws regarding dogs.
4. Keep your dog’s first outing brief. If it’s your dog’s first time to go out, have a quick trip so there is adjustment time to the vessel’s movement. A dog can get seasick, just as humans can.
5. Develop a plan in case your dog falls overboard. Talk about your plan with crew and guests before you leave the slip.
6. Invest in a life jacket. Even at the dock a dog can fall overboard and although most dogs can swim, your pet may panic and not be able to get to where he can be lifted out of the water. It’s important for your dog to have a life jacket anytime it’s on the boat. The Hedz Up Pets Watercollar™, a new product on the market, easily attaches to your dog’s properly-fitted collar. Straps drop away from your dog’s neck, providing all day comfort and ease of movement. This floatation device is designed to keep your dog’s nose above the water. The Hedz Up Pets Watercollar™ is available locally at Encore Resale and online at HedzUpPets.com
7. Other reminders. Allow time for potty breaks or make arrangements onboard. Summer heat can take a toll on animals so make sure your dog stays hydrated. It’s a good idea to carry your pet’s medical records with you and always remember… boating is a fun experience so make it enjoyable for your pet as well as the humans on board!