What to Do When Bringing your Pet Onboard


Q: What should I do before I bring my pet on board?


A: Get a checkup, make sure vaccinations are up to date, carry a signed vaccination certificate and or health certificate, get a stool test to check for worms, check for heartworm and make sure the dog is on preventative medication. Make sure nails are trimmed and pads are in good shape.

Q: What should I carry in my pet’s First Aid Kit?
  • Ears: Panalog Ointment
  • For Minor Scrapes: Panalog Ointment
  • Eyes: Eye washes or artificial tears. Triple antibiotic ointment without cortisone
  • Shampoo: Quality conditioning shampoo and crème rinse. When you can’t give your dog a real bath use waterless shampoo or grooming. Or sprinkle on some baking soda and brush.
  • Hotspots: Panalog ointment
  • Nails: Bring a nail trimmer

Q: What should I do if my dog gets seasick?
A: Once a dog gets sick it is too late to give pills. Start pills a day or two ahead. Begin with 1/4 of the adult dose of human remedies (Dramamine) and work upwards for individual pets. Pills may cause drowsiness and like with all human medications, double check with a veterinarian.

Q: How do I check for heatstroke and what should I do?
A: Rectal temperature is normally 101 to 101.5; temperatures of 105 to 106 can cause irreversible brain and nerve tissue damage. If this happens immediately immerse the pet in cold water and call your vet.

Q: What else should I do to prepare for boating with my pet?
A: While on the boat:

  • Make sure the pet is always wearing a floatation device, preferably one with a handle so you can lift their head above water or help lift them out of the water.
  • Make sure dog had identification or has been microchipped
  • Put the pet’s bed or bedding in a quiet area.
  • Carry a fresh water supply and keep water available at all times and avoid allowing your pet to drink the local water.
  • Carry enough food to cover the trip plus a couple extra days. Limit the dog’s intake prior to the cruise. After 4-5 hours give your pet more food.
  • Medications: Make sure to carry a supply of any medications that your pet may be on.
  • Keep a long handled crab or fish net within grabbing distance on deck to retrieve small pets that fall overboard.
  • For cats hang a strip of carpet overboard in case they go overboard. They may be able to grab onto it and climb back up.
  • Exercise: Make sure your dog is exercised either by swimming or running around the deck. Bring floatable toys for the dog to play with and also chews.
  • When on land never allow your pet to roam off leash, never allow your pet to go visit with a strange dog. Clean up and properly dispose of any feces.

Submitted by BOAT/US Magazine www.boatus.com


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