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agree with astroturf, also start a regular "command" recognition when he does his business. then start to use the command on the boat. after a while he should associate the word and be able to go almost on command.
In my experience the trick to making this work is using that same piece of astroturf at home. Lay it on the grass or wherever the dog normally goes and guide the dog directly to it when he/she REALLY has to go. You can hose it off between uses to keep it tolerable but there will be an odor that remains which the dog can detect. That odor, plus the feel of the mat under his/her feet will trigger the proper response if it's used enough at home before the dog mysteriously finds the same mat on the deck of the boat.

GTJ
 
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