It is very common for kayakers to take their dogs along as they’re as much a party of their family! Maybe you also want to take your furry baby out for a ride on the water. It can be fun and wholesome to see your dog have the time of his life with you.
However, you need some accessories to make the experience as unproblematic as possible for your dog. The most important one is a dog seat so they can sit comfortably and safely. But what else do you need to know about before taking your dog kayaking?
We’ll tell you all about it in this post.
Advice For Taking Your Dog Kayaking
If you want to take your dog kayaking, you should get them their life vest. A life vest can save them in case of a capsize and if they ever happen to fall off the kayak. Moreover, you should keep your dog on a leash if they tend to try to run off a lot.
Having a leash can prevent them from swimming away or getting caught with the currents. It’s best to have a leash and life vest, especially if your dog is small, can’t swim or both.
Another advice is that you should invest in a proper fitting, secure dog seat for your dog. There are many types of dog seats you can get to suit different types of kayaks. Ensure the dog seat is compatible with your kayak and is not too big or too small for your dog.
Easier To Kayak With A Small Dog Or Big Dog?
The best dogs to kayak with are small to medium dogs. Even with small dogs, you might feel a little anxious about them falling into the water or getting hurt by your paddle. However, as long as your dog is well trained to sit still, has a life vest and leash on, they will be okay.
Medium dogs are great because they won’t be hard to spot even if they fall out into the water! They can swim against the current as long as it is not too fast and come back to you. The bigger the dogs get, it could get harder to kayak with a dog.
Bigger dogs can be great kayaking buddies, and there is no doubt. But the issue begins if they are too heavy for your kayak. The weight should balance out with yours, but it can be tricky with lighter, smaller kayaks.
As long as you have an appropriately sized and weighted kayak, you could enjoy kayaking with a great dane too!
Kayak Seats For Dogs
It is best to go kayaking with your dog in a sit-on-top kayak. It offers the most room, and your dog can walk around in it. However, getting a dog seat could allow the dog to sit whenever it likes.
You could place a dog seat closer to you and give them the space to walk too. Kayak dog seats are slip-on and easy to attach and remove.
Your dog may not be as comfortable if you have a closed, sit-inside kayak. However, there are dog seats designed for them. They attach to the hull through grip pads using suction, and the top side is made up of non-slip material.
Kayak Platforms For Dogs
If your dog is not very comfortable in a kayak seat, you can look into kayak platforms for them. A dog kayak platform can either be placed on or alongside your kayak. It gives your dog plenty of room to lay down and feel comfortable.
You can either buy a kayak platform or DIY it – it’s a very simple design compared to dog seats. If your kayak is big enough or your dog is a smaller breed, you can place the platform on top of your kayak.
However, if you have a bigger dog, you can get extensions with a floating device to support the platform. If you want to DIY it rather than buy a platform, let us tell you an easy way to go about it.
First, you need some sturdy yet comfortable material for the platform itself – you could use foam, vinyl stretched between two pipes, etc. Once you have the platform made, you need something that floats to support the platform – usually, foam or even a bunch of pool noodles will do!
Next, you need to set up the platform with your kayak and secure everything with zip ties, ropes, or even screw it into one another. As long as it will hold your dog’s weight and is well built, you’re good to go.
Accessories For Kayaking With Your Dog
Some accessors you need to go kayaking with dogs are:
- Dog life jacket
- Floating leash
- Dog bowls (food and water)
- Doggles – in case your dog falls in the water and prevents eye infections
- Kayak platform or seat for your dog
- Kayak dog deck – to help your dog grip and avoid slipping on your kayak
- Dog treats – reward your dog for good behavior
Keeping Your Dog Safe While Kayaking
The most important thing for your dog is their safety! You need to be vigilant about anything and everything so your dog can fully enjoy your favorite activity.
You should always put dog life vests on your dog and invest in a floating leash as well. You can use the leash on the kayak, but it’s best to reserve it for the shore. It is also good to prepare a platform or buy dog seats and decks for your dog so they can move about safely.
You also should keep fresh water and food bowls on board, as well as treats in a ziplock bag/watertight container. It is also good to get dog bowls with covers to prevent contamination and spillage.
You can give your dog food and water whenever you’ve stopped paddling and reward them with treats!
It would be best to keep your dog’s temperament in mind. If you think your dog will not behave when aboard the kayak, do not push them to go. The first step is to train them to behave on the kayak.
Kayaking with your dog can be an amazing experience, and they might love it just as much as you. As long as you keep their safety your priority, everything else will fall into place.
Dog seats and platforms are a great addition to your dog’s kayak kit. This will allow them to explore the kayaking experience fully, all the while enjoying the view of water with you.
We hope this article was just what you needed in understanding how to go kayaking with your dog.
Stay safe, have fun, and keep your dog happy!