Boating with Your Dog

Now that summer has officially begun, more people are going out on the water in boats. So we’re sharing pet safety tips if you choose to take your animal aboard.

For those who live near lakes, rivers or oceans, it is not uncommon to go boating during the summer. Boating can be very fun, especially when you include your pooch! However, if you choose to take your pet onto the boat with you, there are certain safety precautions to consider on each trip:

First and foremost, consider whether you need to build or buy a ramp for your dog to have easy access for getting in and out of the boat from land. You’ll also need a ramp if your pet is getting in and out of the water. Remember:  your animal will weigh more and possibly be more slippery when it is wet. You might not be able to lift him so easily!

Next, plan time to let your pooch get a feel for the boat before actually going on the water with it. Let your dog sniff and explore the watercraft while it is docked. Also, go ahead and turn on the ignition while it is still docked. This way your pet can get used to the sound and smell the engine will make.

Finally, even if your animal is a good swimmer, things can happen in the water: animals can get panicked or just become exhausted from being in or getting in and out of the water. So invest in a life jacket for your dog. If it’s your pet’s first time with this safety device, gradually get your dog used to wearing it. And let it practice swimming in the life jacket before actually going out on a boat ride. You can find dog life jackets at your local pet store.

Now, with these checks off your list, time to hit the open water!

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