Originally Posted by aDemilich
I did a search but didn't find anything on this particular topic- I plan on living aboard
a 27' sailboat in the future with two middle-aged cats, and I'm worried about them falling overboard. Would it make sense to install something like this? https://www.amazon.com/Salty-Reef-Ma...a-817027838305
Is cats falling overboard usually even a problem? I read in an older thread that it rarely happens again after the first time since they learn to be careful, but my cats are pretty rambunctious and like to wrestle a lot. I'd like to think they're smart enough not to participate in such activities on deck, but I'd be crushed if I ever lost one of them.
Any other general advice
y'all can give regarding cat safety
on board? I'll definitely be investing in a pool net of some sort to fish
them out if needed, and am also trying to think about installing something that would allow them to climb aboard from the water
Thanks for looking!
We have never lived aboard, but we frequently have taken our two Birman cats to sea as coastal cruisers. When under way they happily ensconce themselves under the dodger
on either side of the companionway
or sleep in their cozy mat in the saloon
. The only precaution we have ever taken with them is to hang a piece of two and a half inch hemp rope
off the back of our sugar scoop stern in case they went overboard at night while at anchor so they could haul themselves back up. They generally aren't active in the rougher weather
On one occasion our boy was up on the canvas bimini
top, (we like to tease him by running a finger under his belly while he's up there, but you have to be quick to miss the claws) and a sudden gust threw the boat over to the side and we saw him sliding across the bimini
top towards the edge. It surprised us that his claws didn't immediately come into play but he must have been asleep. However he got a grip before disaster took hold! Coming into a marina berth we like to keep them below because they want to explore as soon as they know we are coming in and are likely to jump ship while still coming to a halt and could get jammed between jetty and ship or just trip us up while we organize lines.
At anchor every day we ask if they want to go "dig, dig" on the shore and as soon as they hear those words they leap up the companionway
and wait for the dinghy
to be brought up close.
When we get to shore they sometimes jump a little prematurely and end up getting a footbath which is hilarious because at each step they lift
a foot and shake it carefully before putting it back in the water only to repeat the process on every other foot.
Getting to shore is sometimes a slow processs but we get lots of laughs in the meantime.