If you’re planning to go boating with your dog for the first time and don’t know what safety measures you should take to ensure a carefree journey, you’re not alone! Several people make the mistake of taking their pets out on the water without taking any additional precautions, which often puts them in stressful situations.
Therefore, to make sure you’re having the best time with your furry friend, you can keep the following six tips in mind to execute the perfect boat trip!
1- Tag Them
Before stepping out of the house to leave for your boating adventure, you must attach an identification tag to your dog’s collar when you’re taking them with you. The label should contain all information, including your name, contact information, and the marina address.
2- Keep a Copy of Your Pet’s Medical Records
Another thing to ensure before you leave your house for an unfamiliar boating destination is to keep a copy of your dog’s medical and vaccination records. While not all marinas require proof of immunization before they allow your pet to roam around freely on their land, it could be a possibility you should be prepared for in advance.
3- Suit Them Up with Life Jackets
A personal floatation device (PFD) is a must-have for you and your pets to ensure safety. Even if you and your pet know how to swim, it’s still best to suit up since getting tossed overboard might put your furry friend into panic mode. Not to mention, some pets fall into the water when they’re still on the dock, whether in excitement or their an attempt to get away. Either way, having them wearing a life jacket makes it easier for you to retrieve them safely.
You can get them used to the PFD by practicing to wear it with them at home before your trip.
4- Give Them Time to Familiarize with the New Surroundings
Furthermore, it’s best to let your pet get familiarized with the new surroundings when entering the boat. It reduces their chances to panic and gives them time to look around and smell while the watercraft is still docked.
Once they’re comfortable, you can turn on the engine and let them get used to that sound before taking them out on a small cruise since it’s better not to try their limits in the first boating session.
5- Consider Proper Hydration and Shading
While dogs don’t sweat, they show other symptoms when dehydrated, including heavy panting and drooling. It’s essential to keep plenty of water on board for your pet along with their water bowl. Plus, it’s best to have some space on the boat where your pet can rest under a shady area, away from the direct sunlight, so they don’t get sick.
6- Allow Bathroom Breaks with Proper Provisions
Lastly, it would help if you made all provisions to ensure your dog can relieve themselves when on the boat. Carrying a portable dog potty stimulating a patch of grass is an excellent solution in most cases.
Keeping these six points in mind will ensure you enjoy the best, carefree time boating with your dog whenever you’re out on the water!