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Old 25-08-2015, 21:42   #1
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Newbie with dog agility question !

Hi all,
We are new to the world of sailing and looking forward to the learning and adventures that lie ahead.
We would like to take our border collie on our voyages but concerned about access up and down steep steps into living area. Has anyone any experience of this . Is it better to purchase a multihull as not such steep steps

Thanks
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Old 25-08-2015, 23:15   #2
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Had some friends cruising with a Border Collie on an Adams 15 (meters). She seemed to manage okay. Of course, as they age, it may get more difficult, just as it does for humans.

Ann
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Old 26-08-2015, 03:18   #3
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

My GF years ago got and Old English Sheep dog which was quite big. We tried to take Pookie with us but it was just impractical getting her on the boat, and down below. I got a pair of Westies back in 2001 and they work well on the boat. And we can easily take them below or toss them onto the bridgedeck from below. They've been on board since they were puppies and are completely acclimated to the boat and know not to go forward when we are underway.

Collie seems too big for a sailboat for anything but an occasional day sail.
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Old 27-08-2015, 08:25   #4
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Thanks for your replies ,
I will keep this in mind. We don't want problems later so will do some thorough research before considering taking our collie on board
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Old 27-08-2015, 08:41   #5
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Keep in mind that while most dogs & cats take to sailing very well if they start young, many older animals suffer from sea sickness. Take you dog sailing a time or two to ensure he/she doesn't suffer such a fate before you make significant decisions based on physical limitations.
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Old 27-08-2015, 08:42   #6
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

The drop into my salon is about 3 ft. What Border Collie can't jump that distance? My 60lb Staffordshire/Rottie mix doesn't even hesitate.
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Old 27-08-2015, 08:50   #7
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Yes cats are better for dogs. Monos manage though. There's a mono anchored next to us, the dog climbs from the water, into the dinghy, then onto the boat. Dogs can be inventive.
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Old 27-08-2015, 12:21   #8
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

I've got a hundred-pound, gracefully aging Doberman that can't leap into or out of our Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 40. My solution was to use a ramp resting from a couple of steps down to a horizontal brace that fits into two U-shaped supports about twelve inches high on either side of the galley cabinet and head wall.

The whole affair, ramp and brace attached with Velcro, stands flush against a wall next to the aft cabin. Because the corner is at an acute angle, a single sliding barrel bolt holds it firmly in even the roughest sea.

I glued a thin layer of carpet to the top for more grip, which also helps protect the wall against which it's stowed.

It's virtually invisible when stowed and is commissioned in less than a minute.

Fair winds,

Leo
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Old 27-08-2015, 14:38   #9
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo Ticheli View Post
I've got a hundred-pound, gracefully aging Doberman that can't leap into or out of our Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 40. My solution was to use a ramp resting from a couple of steps down to a horizontal brace that fits into two U-shaped supports about twelve inches high on either side of the galley cabinet and head wall.

The whole affair, ramp and brace attached with Velcro, stands flush against a wall next to the aft cabin. Because the corner is at an acute angle, a single sliding barrel bolt holds it firmly in even the roughest sea.

I glued a thin layer of carpet to the top for more grip, which also helps protect the wall against which it's stowed.

It's virtually invisible when stowed and is commissioned in less than a minute.

Fair winds,

Leo
It seems people can be inventive, as well as dogs!
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Old 02-09-2015, 14:21   #10
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Thanks for all your positive replies.
We will first find out if our collie doesnt succumb to sea sickness too much and then look for a yacht that will suit with possible modification as suggested

Happy sailing
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Old 02-09-2015, 14:34   #11
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

We took a 60# Lab to SoPac. Had to help her up and down the very long companionway ladder on our W32 at sea. Just a matter of steadying her as she went up or down with the motion of the boat. She'd do it on her own at anchor.
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Old 04-09-2015, 13:56   #12
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

These days, my Newfoundland creeps down the gangway to the galley level on his front paws, while his rear ones stay firmly planted on the cockpit level. Then, he slowly slides his front paws across the galley landing and starts his descent to the salon whilst negotiating the upper set of stairs with his rear ones (talk about multi-tasking...).
The first time he came aboard, he literally tumbled down the stairs, slid across the salon, and sent Bonnie flying down the corridor.
In my opinion, big dogs and boats don't often mix well, especially when said dogs are trying to get their sea paws later on in life.

Jacques
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Old 04-09-2015, 14:24   #13
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

There is a "Dog" posting from 1-2 months ago that gives a link to a company that makes ladders for dogs. Wider steps & a shallower angle than normal. We are looking at those as an alternative for our dogs (Dalmation & Pit). Good luck with the 4 legged family members!
Mike
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Old 04-09-2015, 15:07   #14
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the OP's dog had issues with the interior stairs, not getting on-and-off the boat per se.

Like most animals, dogs have a superior sense of balance and can negotiate practically any kind of surface, just as long as they have enough room for their paws, enough traction and enough purchase. Smooth surfaces and long nails are their major enemies on a boat (and elsewhere).

This said, all dogs have a problem climbing up and down stairs. They're just not designed for it. It hurts their back. Turn those stairs into a narrow ladder, and it gets worse.

Watch a dog climb up a stiff rocky hill, and I'll bet you'll see him zigzag.

Jacques
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Old 05-09-2015, 06:42   #15
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Re: Newbie with dog agility question !

Few timers I've thought about trying to find a good hull/standing rig/older boat and re-doing the interior to be more dog friendly.
My next boat will be my last one, would only cost me time and materials, have all the tools and machines to do it, will be retired in 3.5 years and looking for things to do. Will have the money, could afford to keep my current boat until the project one was done.
If I didn't know better it almost sounds like a fun, good thing reality sets in after a few minutes of dreaming.
Kind of like that weekend at a Greatful Dead concert, spent it with a very cute blonde hippy girl who made communal goat herding in Oregon sould like a good idea!
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