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Old 29-05-2013, 13:01   #16
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Re: Cats and boats

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Originally Posted by GalaxyGirl View Post
I'm fascinated by your tether solution. How does that work out? Is your cat ok with being leashed? This might be a possibility for us.
Lets just say he sort of, kind of tolerates the tether. its by no means his favorate thing. But it does keep the harbor masters happy, well happier anyway. He, that is the cat not the harbormaster, does take great pleasure wrapping the rope around everything in sight. So untangling it can be fun. Though that may be less a problem on a power boat.

After being on a tether for a while, he is quite easy to walk on a leash. Or is he walking me....
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Old 29-05-2013, 13:02   #17
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Re: Cats and boats

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I'm fascinated by your tether solution. How does that work out? Is your cat ok with being leashed? This might be a possibility for us.
Not answering for SailorChick but when we have experimented with this we find one problem: Cat wanders about, circles around something (say
binnacle in cockpit, which has happened) and all of a sudden cat is on a 2' lead and can't go anywhere. Not going to give up on this, but need to find solution. This is mostly desired when in a marina and want to keep cats on board (but not locked below).
At anchor we let them roam about the decks. We have two large lines (I think 2-1/2" diameter) that we drop over the sides running from top of toe rail to about 6" below waterline. They have been trained (that was lot's of fun) to swim to one of the ropes and climb back on board. They did this very well during our training at least.
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Old 29-05-2013, 13:59   #18
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Re: Cats and boats

We took 3 cats with us when we moved aboard. Our biggest worry was a long intercontinental flight to get to the boat but the cats, who stayed in the luggage compartment, were unaffected by it.

Two of the cats were big friends (male and the female kitten of the 3rd cat) and the other one was not too impressed with that friendship. Many cats merely tolerate each other, which is fine, it's their way.

We always let our cats roam free except when we lock up for the night. It's a choice and we believe they have a better life that way, although many cats are content with staying inside. That is the nice thing with cats and which is never possible with dogs.

At anchor they can just fall overboard but normally it happens as part of their adventures, like during catching fish or squid. The male managed to stay dry for about 4 years and then he decided to walk over the steep grade transom while it was wet, slipped and went swimming. He went around the boat faster than I could follow with the dinghy and then let me put him back on the swimming platform where he stayed ready to jump again for another swim. All very macho. Even the fresh water shower, which is normally a drama, was taken like if it's everyday's business.
We have a knotted rope hanging overboard at the stern so they can climb out. They don't use it of-course; the rubber flap over the engine exhaust is preferred.

One cat, the youngest fell overboard when we were on the hard. This happened during new years and we think it was the fireworks. She broke her back on a boat stand. That is the tough side of letting cats roam about. After that we kept them locked up with new years eve.

We also keep them locked up during sailing, after we learned that they will pick the height of a storm to come and and go to the foredeck to check it out. We risked our life to get him back inside.

At a marina, they establish their territory and patrol it diligently. They also steal food from other boats and we once had a guy yelling at us because a cat took his bread and he demanded we pay him $2 for a new bread. It only adds to the fun and stories

We got a new #3 cat while anchored at Isla Margerita. She became big friends with the male but the grouchy female didn't want anything to do with her. We taught this cat (Obi Wan Kenobi, the one that died was Yoda...) how to swim and she would jump in and out of the dinghy, come along for a ride, catch fish all the time but never went for voluntary swims. I have seen cats that grow up aboard boats who do that incl. swimming over to other boats etc.

Then there was a French boat with a cat named "Cat". He went missing in the jungle of Panama. The folks were searching for months, put out trails of cat food from the jungle to their boat etc. (our cats followed those trails the wrong way all the time ) In the end they gave up and left. Months later we were on the hard again and the grouchy female (Pasja) went missing (we were down to 2 cats now). That is not unusual, but we reported it to people so they know. The next day they come and get us because they found the cat... well, it was Cat, the French one (back to 3 cats). Barely alive I might say, with wounds and a harness that was half out and grown into his skin. We decided to try to save him so started draining and cleaning a big abscess, cut the harness away, wash, give anti-biotics etc.
A day or so later Pasja shows up again, so now we have 4 cats. But I found an email address of the French owners so sent an email out and waited. In the mean time, there were people volunteering to take Cat if the owners wouldn't report. We liked that because we decided 4 cats is too much. There was this one girl that really wanted it badly... but then we got an email back from the owners... they would sail back and collect Cat. We were back down to 3 cats. But the girl was heartbroken so we offered her a cat from us (Pasja who didn't like the other two so much) and she was happy with that. We were back to 2 cats now.
Then the male cat was old and sick and really at his end. We had to put him to sleep which was the toughest thing that happened since we went cruising. We were back to one cat, Obi Wan. She was not happy alone and we gave her to the daughter of a local guy we know here in Panama, where she is happy and catching lizards all day. So now we're at 0 cats!

We still see Pasja and Obi Wan Kenobi now and then and they still recognize us

I hope this story explains a bit how it is with cats aboard: go for it!!

Here's the cat named "Cat" sick and wounded:

but getting better:

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Old 29-05-2013, 15:00   #19
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Re: Cats and boats

pooooor Cat.....glad he is better and with his family again...

bubba does leash and harness well..if he slips harness he will sit in front of door to head and wait for me. he is safe there.
bubbas furrz have worn where the harness rubs him--i leave it off when at anchor and he seems to be growing some back. he was harnessed and on a lead for the first 2 yrs of his life, so he knows leash and harness as safe ..he likes safe.
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Old 31-05-2013, 19:49   #20
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Re: Cats and boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
We took 3 cats with us when we moved aboard. Our biggest worry was a long intercontinental flight to get to the boat but the cats, who stayed in the luggage compartment, were unaffected by it.

Two of the cats were big friends (male and the female kitten of the 3rd cat) and the other one was not too impressed with that friendship. Many cats merely tolerate each other, which is fine, it's their way.

We always let our cats roam free except when we lock up for the night. It's a choice and we believe they have a better life that way, although many cats are content with staying inside. That is the nice thing with cats and which is never possible with dogs.

At anchor they can just fall overboard but normally it happens as part of their adventures, like during catching fish or squid. The male managed to stay dry for about 4 years and then he decided to walk over the steep grade transom while it was wet, slipped and went swimming. He went around the boat faster than I could follow with the dinghy and then let me put him back on the swimming platform where he stayed ready to jump again for another swim. All very macho. Even the fresh water shower, which is normally a drama, was taken like if it's everyday's business.
We have a knotted rope hanging overboard at the stern so they can climb out. They don't use it of-course; the rubber flap over the engine exhaust is preferred.

One cat, the youngest fell overboard when we were on the hard. This happened during new years and we think it was the fireworks. She broke her back on a boat stand. That is the tough side of letting cats roam about. After that we kept them locked up with new years eve.

We also keep them locked up during sailing, after we learned that they will pick the height of a storm to come and and go to the foredeck to check it out. We risked our life to get him back inside.

At a marina, they establish their territory and patrol it diligently. They also steal food from other boats and we once had a guy yelling at us because a cat took his bread and he demanded we pay him $2 for a new bread. It only adds to the fun and stories

We got a new #3 cat while anchored at Isla Margerita. She became big friends with the male but the grouchy female didn't want anything to do with her. We taught this cat (Obi Wan Kenobi, the one that died was Yoda...) how to swim and she would jump in and out of the dinghy, come along for a ride, catch fish all the time but never went for voluntary swims. I have seen cats that grow up aboard boats who do that incl. swimming over to other boats etc.

Then there was a French boat with a cat named "Cat". He went missing in the jungle of Panama. The folks were searching for months, put out trails of cat food from the jungle to their boat etc. (our cats followed those trails the wrong way all the time ) In the end they gave up and left. Months later we were on the hard again and the grouchy female (Pasja) went missing (we were down to 2 cats now). That is not unusual, but we reported it to people so they know. The next day they come and get us because they found the cat... well, it was Cat, the French one (back to 3 cats). Barely alive I might say, with wounds and a harness that was half out and grown into his skin. We decided to try to save him so started draining and cleaning a big abscess, cut the harness away, wash, give anti-biotics etc.
A day or so later Pasja shows up again, so now we have 4 cats. But I found an email address of the French owners so sent an email out and waited. In the mean time, there were people volunteering to take Cat if the owners wouldn't report. We liked that because we decided 4 cats is too much. There was this one girl that really wanted it badly... but then we got an email back from the owners... they would sail back and collect Cat. We were back down to 3 cats. But the girl was heartbroken so we offered her a cat from us (Pasja who didn't like the other two so much) and she was happy with that. We were back to 2 cats now.
Then the male cat was old and sick and really at his end. We had to put him to sleep which was the toughest thing that happened since we went cruising. We were back to one cat, Obi Wan. She was not happy alone and we gave her to the daughter of a local guy we know here in Panama, where she is happy and catching lizards all day. So now we're at 0 cats!

We still see Pasja and Obi Wan Kenobi now and then and they still recognize us

I hope this story explains a bit how it is with cats aboard: go for it!!

Here's the cat named "Cat" sick and wounded:

but getting better:

OMG, that was one hell of a story. I can't believe you guys went through all of that with all those cats. I guess cats really do have 9 lives. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 31-05-2013, 20:14   #21
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We have brought two cats cruising (beginning in 9/2012) a 17 y.o. and a 5 y.o. They were not friends and barely tolerated each other. They were both house cats.

We have discovered the 17 y.o. gets seasick, but it usually only last a day an a half and prefers to be in the cabin during rough seas. The 5 y.o. is really resilient, but is afraid of rough weather and prefers to be on deck, preferably in someone's lap (even though, normally, she hates being held).

At night we, when we are in bed, we keep them inside. During the day, they are free to wander anywhere on the boat. Neither seem inclined to leave the boat in a marina (although they are always supervised). At anchor, I worry a little about the younger one. To begin with, she has always liked water (voluntarily getting in the bathtub full of water at home). The further south we move and the clearer the water gets, the more she is intrigued with it -- it is only a matter of time before she jumps in. I have planned to teach her how to get back into the boat (via a thick rope over the side) but haven't gotten to it yet.

These days, while they are still not friends, they seem to tolerate each other much better -- I get the impression they are happy to have the each other to share the adventure with but don't want to admit it! LOL

Everyone thought we were nuts for taking the cats, everyone thought it would be too much trouble. While it has not been easy, they have been good little travelers (via long distance car trips, plane trips, or sailing) I could have never envisioned our life without them.

Go for it!
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Old 31-05-2013, 20:34   #22
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Re: Cats and boats

We got our cat, Hobiecat, from a litter just as he was weaned and took him immediately to our sailboat, stocked up on kitty litter in the US and headed for Mexico for a couple of years cruising. Hobie never left the boat at dock or on the hook. Got back to the US and a girl in the marina next to us had a couple of cats in heat which was the first time Hobie ever left the boat. My wife grabbed Hobie and threw him in the water then fished him out. Never left our boat again! Never got seasick and when a sea was running, would jam himself into the corner of a bunk and go to sleep. Never took to the harness so would roam the boat constantly.
Finally had to move to a powerboat and he used to camp out in the bow and growl like a dog through the hawsepipe at anybody who walked past. Scared the hell out of the neighbors! Was nearly 14 when cancer finally took him... good memories of the little guy. Phil
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Old 31-05-2013, 21:45   #23
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I forgot to report that with 3 cats sharing a litter box, we found that the Fresh Step brand is the best choice in the Caribbean. Places like Pricesmart, CostULess etc. sell it in big quantities for a reasonable price.
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Old 31-05-2013, 22:36   #24
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I forgot to report that with 3 cats sharing a litter box, we found that the Fresh Step brand is the best choice in the Caribbean. Places like Pricesmart, CostULess etc. sell it in big quantities for a reasonable price.
That is good to know, as that is the brand we use. However, we are going to experiment with the ceramic stuff previously posted this summer. Additionally, we hope to train the younger one to use the head.
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Old 06-06-2013, 18:40   #25
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Re: Cats and boats

Our cat loves the boat, which is good as we live on it for 6 months a year. She is not allowed on the dock unless she is on a leash. She has learned that the harness means outside! We tether her to the boat while at dockside but not while under-way. One of her favorite places has been on top of the dodger....I guess she likes to be up high. Only gets seasick once in a while but we have learned to not feed her if we are heading out in any weather until under way.
She has also learned, or I have, how to walk with the leash. I try to take her to a park as often as possible so she can "be a cat" and eat grass, roll in the dirt and claw a tree or two. She has caught a bird while on her tether but did not know what to do with it.
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Old 10-06-2013, 07:10   #26
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Re: Cats and boats

What do you guys do about getting them water? Our cats drink quite a bit of water from their water bowl.

I imagine on long passages you can't easily let water bowl lay around.
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Old 10-06-2013, 07:49   #27
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Re: Cats and Boats

bubba drinks from his bowl i keep with water for him...he also drinks the dew when it is heavy....there is no problem getting water for cat on boat..he drinks same as do i..bottled water.

on long passages i keep his bowl partially filled and near where he is lying in my berth--on floor nestled in with his food dish and his favorite rug for sleeping. if it spills, is not big deal. is a boat.. and water is in the bottles so i can get more.
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Old 10-06-2013, 08:28   #28
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Re: Cats and boats

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What do you guys do about getting them water? Our cats drink quite a bit of water from their water bowl.

I imagine on long passages you can't easily let water bowl lay around.
We use a Waterboy pet bowl.

Lixit Water Boy Travel Bottle with Bowl - 3 qt - Free Shipping

It really works great. While underway (for short distances), I usually just pick it up and put it in the galley sink. Otherwise, it is stable enough to just leave wedged against a sette on the floor.
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:03   #29
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I have a bowl called a buddy bowl. It is a no spill design. From a different manufacturer but same idea this may be a good cat size:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B002YT...dir_mdp_mobile
SC
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Old 10-06-2013, 10:15   #30
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Re: Cats and Boats

Keep them out of the rum supply and they're pretty good onboard.



We keep Shadow (aka The Princess) on a long tether. She get tangled but it's usually not that big a deal.



We couldn't keep the Big Boy (Squirt) on a tether. He slipped it one night and got loose in the woods. It took us 4 1/2 months of searching to finally catch up with him again. Why he'd leave a boat with belly scratchies for the trailer park we'll never know!



They can be trained to use the head. Although not all are willing to do it.

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