Taking to the waters is a fun and relaxing way to get away from it all, but for many people, there is one thing that is missing: their best friend. Today, our pets are more than just four-legged friends. They are integral family members. They bring us unending love, joy, and entertainment.
Yet, when it comes time to embark on a sailing adventure, many people worry that they will have to leave their best buddy behind. This can be heartbreaking for both the animal and its pet parent. Thankfully, you can bring your fur baby with you when you go yachting, but this type of excursion isn’t the same as a road trip to grandma’s house.
If you are ready to take your dog or cat with you out on open water, take some of these tips to heart. They can help make your trip more enjoyable for both you and your four-legged friend.
Start Planning Now
Where are you going? How long will you be away? These are the first questions any well-seasoned traveler contemplates before going traveling. However, these questions are more significant when you are thinking about bringing a pet along for the ride. Planning is the key to a safe and worry-free yachting experience with your pet. Start planning early.
Where are you planning to go? This is crucial because when taking a pet along, there can be extra considerations to make. Will it need a visa or pet passport? What vaccinations will it need, and do those vaccinations need to be updated? Do you need to bring medication? Is your pet updated on tick and heartworm prevention? Have they been microchipped? These are serious questions, and your answers to them may depend on where you are going and what regulations are in place at your destination.
Start by planning your trip and then researching the pet policies in those locations. Then gather your veterinary paperwork and make sure your pet is up to date on everything required. Keep copies of these documents with you when you travel. If your animal needs a pet passport, apply for one as early as possible to avoid the stress of rushing through the process and waiting on documents. Thorough and early planning on your part will make this trip more enjoyable for everyone involved.
Give Animals a Safe Space
Depending on your travel arrangements, make sure that the yacht has a safe space for your friend. It could be in your room or another secure area where the animal can go to feel safe. A bed, soft cushions, a familiar blanket, or favorite toy: make sure they have what they need to curl up and hunker down. You may want to consider bringing a cage, crate, box, or another type of enclosure your pet can crawl into to settle down. Everyone needs a secure area of their own where they can feel safe and snug, no matter what the conditions.
Let Them Get Their Sea Legs
Yes, animals can get seasick. This malady is not exclusive to humans. Even on a yacht, it can take both pets and people a little time to get used to the motion of the waves and gliding through the water. Be patient and plan ahead. Before leaving dry land, talk with your vet about options that may help your fur baby cope with potential sickness.
Sometimes medication may be recommended, either for motion sickness or anti-anxiety. Fill all prescriptions beforehand, and make sure you have enough medication on hand to get you through the duration of your trip. Keep plenty of fresh water on hand, and make sure they stay cool and comfortable. Heat can make nausea worse and lead to vomiting.
Safety Comes First
In addition to medications, make sure that you think about sun protection for your loved one. Pets need shade and sun protection just like people do. Give them access to shady spaces or make sure they have animal-safe sunscreen. Also, make sure they always have a supply of fresh, cool water that they have easy access to. If the deck gets hot, shoes that protect their paw pads can be helpful.
Some owners also have dog and cat lifejackets on hand if the pet likes to explore the deck. Just always make sure that you keep an eye on them. If you are unsure how they may respond to being on deck, keep them leashed. Compiling a little doggie or kitty first aid kit is also a good idea. Keep bandages, anti-bacterial cream, and all your pets’ medications in one handy kit.
Waste happens. Some yachts are equipped with faux grass patches where dogs can go about their business. You can also purchase AstroTurf-like pads that are specially designed for animal waste. Be patient. It may feel like you are potty training all over again because, essentially, you are. It may take some time and training for your pet to get used to the situation and start using a specific space as their new toilet. Cats can be a little easier to acclimate. Make sure they have access to a fresh and clean litter box or two and that they know where the litter boxes are located.
Yachting with pets can be a rich and rewarding experience. Not only are you traveling in the lap of luxury, but you are also sharing the adventure with someone you love, someone who will give you unconditional affection the entire journey. You don’t have to be afraid of yachting with your fur baby, as long as you plan ahead and take the necessary precautions to make sure your furry friend stays safe.
Have we enticed you to head out into open water? That luxury can be yours, and Anita Dee Yacht Charters can provide it. We are Chicago’s premier yacht rental company, and we offer you a taste of the extravagant for your next wedding, corporate event, or social engagement. You tell us what you are looking for, and we deliver spectacular results, taking the pressure off you so you can enjoy the day and make lasting memories with those closest to you.
For more information about how Anita Dee Yacht Charters can take your next event from boring to elevated, call us at (312) 379-3191 or contact us today. Even Fluffy would approve!