Aboard with a four-legged friend
We are frequently asked whether a yacht is a pet-friendly space?
The answer depends on several things:
- on a specific yacht. Some yachts do not allow the dogs aboard due to damages they can cause: pets’ fur can be a reason for plugging waste water filters, also dogs can scratch the expensive coverage on a yacht because even people on board take their shoes off and the dog’s paws are with sharp claws.
- on a certain pet.
Its size – you have to admit it, that keeping The Chihuahua and the Newfoundlend on board 18-30m has many differences.
Its attitude – the pet might simply panic in an unfamiliar place and make a lot of “noise”.
Its health condition – the pet might suffer from seasickness while there certainly won’t be any veterinary medicines on the yacht.
Its natural needs – not every dog is able to pee on a pee pad, and you cannot reduce his fluid intake because of the risk of a heat stroke, etc.
- On a trip distance. Setting off a short-term yacht tour it would be better to leave your little friend on its own in a comfortable place. If you want to make a long term journey, you need to start preparation in advance and look for a yacht fitted for your pet as well.
The responsible parents of the dog know that travelling with pets is the same as travelling with children. In fact, the problems you may encounter are almost the same: entertainment, meal, toilet and health). Let’s have a brief look at them.
Entertainment. Take all favourite dog’s toys with you. Because if you won’t play with him/her, the pet will entertain him/herself but not without causing harm to a yacht – the captain will not be happy. Depending on a yacht and a dog size you can bring even active games like a ball: you may sit on a swimming platform with a cocktail while your pup enjoys swimming to bring your thrown ball – everybody is happy!
Meal. Definitely take with you dog food, bowls and treats to encourage a good behaviour of the little. Yet adjust this item according to the next one, namely…
Toilet. Since you stay far from the land, there will be no opportunity to walk the dog as he/she got used to. Therefore it is important for you to know the characteristics of the organism of your four-legged friend: if he/she will be happy to relieve on a pee pad it is wonderful, if he/she can wait till you go ashore – great, but if your pet has problem with a bladder, you need to make an adjustment of the meal plan if the long sea voyage is planned.
You need to pay attention to the health condition of your pet: the main problem on board can be sea sickness, so you should acquire special veterinary medicines in advance. Also remember that your pup should drink enough fluids in hot weather and avoid the sun, so bring his pet bed with you and put it in the shade. In case of swallowing a lot of salty water that may cause diarrhoea, you can use the products which are always at hand as a remedy: bananas, white rice, and coconut water as a good rehydrator. By the way, you can use them for people as well.
However, as a responsible dog parent you should remember that sudden change of environment has negative impacts for the pet which has never been on board before. So if you plan to set off for a short sea trip (e.g. 4-5 hours), it would be better for your pup to stay in the hotel room under AC.