cruising all I can
Join Date: Apr 2007
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Re: Suggestions for getting a dog from boat to dinghy (and back again!)
We started with 4 , yes that's right 4 (four) dogs ranging from 20 lbs. to 65 lbs. also our daughter was only three years old when we first venture out.
Mostly the dogs were all strays at one point in there lives and from varying backgrounds. we used the dog-lifejackets ALWAYS , except for the Pomeranian with one eye (Fuzzy) as no one was brave enough to try to put one on him as he had very sharp teath and wasn't afraid to demonstrate their effectiveness.
I would suggest padding the straps that go around and under the animal to make lifting them less harsh on their underbellies. we did this and it works. Also we added a rear strap,padded that went around the back/butt to keep them from sliding out the back of the lifejacket as the ones sold in stores did not come w/ that strap.
As per loading and unloading. It is a chore, plain and simple often several times a day and in all weather and sea conditions as none of our animals would use the head onboard.
You realy have to be an animal lover to subject yourself to having a dog or dogs aboard.
My better half more than I, but it definately takes 2 people if you have to handle the animal.
The first year we had no (dependable) outboard for dinghy and I lost about 50 lbs rowing that year ! (bonus) Also it will greatly reduce your anchoring opportunities as you will want to anchor where you have an opportunity to land ashore, low tide can really suck.
I have landed on shell banks and sand bars to accomplish the task.
Finally , to minimize conflict with those ashore, alway have plenty of doggy bags in your pocket and be the good stuart after your animal.
The pups have all passed on now w/ the last (and largest) gone a year ago.
The crew misses them , me, well I guess I do to a bit. But I don't have any desire to put myself or another dog in that situation again as it is a big commitment and resposibility.
we now have a cat, and a ltter box.