There is nothing better than spending the day out on the water, except maybe being able to spend that time with your furry companion. Most dogs enjoy the water – unless that water is used for a bath! Dogs have become part of the family, and while we want to bring them with us everywhere, we also want to make sure they are safe. If you do bring your pup with you out on the water, keep in mind these safety tips to ensure a fun-filled day of boating at the Lake of the Ozarks:
1. Invest in a Canine Life Jacket – Most boating stores and pet shops sell life vests for dogs. Although dogs know how to swim, fatigue can cause even the most experienced dogs to drown. Even if your dog doesn’t go swimming, having a life jacket on them is a good idea in case they go overboard.
2. Have a Plan in Place for If They Go Overboard – Accidents happen, so have a plan in case the dog falls overboard, or even jumps off the boat. Make sure everyone on board knows what the plan is to save time in case it has to go into action.
3. Bring Sunscreen – Just like we need sunscreen, some dogs need sunscreen as well. Short haired breeds, such as boxers or any light haired dog, needs protection from the sun.
4. Be Prepared for Accidents – Your dog is going to need a place to relieve himself. If you plan on being out in the water for any length of time, bring lots of paper towels, pet waste bags and cleaning products. Also, be prepared that your dog may become seasick, especially if they are new to boating.
5. Bring a First Aid Kit – Make sure you bring a stocked first aid kit with you, not only for yourself, but for your pet as well. The Humane Society has a list of items that you should keep in your pet’s first-aid kit at all times. If your dog is on any medication, do not forget to bring those out with you too.
6. Keep Your Dog Hydrated – It is important to make sure your dog does not overheat by making sure they have plenty of water. Be sure there is also a place available where they can get some shade.
7. Keep Their First Time Short – It is a good idea to keep your dog’s first boat outing brief so they are able to get used to being out on the water. If they do become sea sick, talk to your vet to see if there is something that can help them out on future trips.
8. Visit the Boat Before Going Out – If your dog is new to the boating world, have them visit the boat before taking off onto the water. It would be a good idea to bring a toy or blanket they use frequently so they have something familiar with them.
9. Use Your Best Judgement – Always use common sense when your dog is on board. Block off areas that are slippery, where your dog could fall. Always know where your dog is at while on board, so you are aware if he needs your help.
Boating with your pups can make the experience even more enjoyable, but it is important that you keep them safe while on the water. If you are looking for a boat – new or previously used – come to the largest boat dealer at the Lake of the Ozarks. Iguana Boat Sales has the perfect boat to meet all your needs. Visit our showroom in Osage Beach today, or view our inventory on our website.