Kayaking is one of the most therapeutic and relaxing recreational activities. The trend has picked up in the recent past, and more people are trying their hand at kayaking and canoeing. The solitude, tranquility, and relaxation that kayaking offers is unparalleled and cannot be compared with any other form of recreational water sports or activity. It does not only provides mental relaxation but physical exercise too.
Many people love taking their pets, especially dogs for their getaways and recreational activities. It is not surprising how dog owners are looking for ways to tag their dogs along with them on their kayaks. However, the nature of the kayak and the personality and size of most dogs becomes a significant hurdle in doing so. Interestingly, despite all the hindrances kayaking with dogs on board is still not impossible. All you need to do is to get the right equipment and train your dog according to the needs of your trip.
The first thing that you need to focus on when going on a kayak with your dog is the kayak itself. It is essential that the vessel is appropriate for your dog to be on board. Remember that your kayaking trip will only be worth it if your dog manages to stay comfortable and peaceful throughout the journey. It will not be worth it if you spend your entire trip pinning down a hyperactive dog. It is the most basic requirement that the kayak has enough space to accommodate your dog comfortably. If it is too cramped to accommodate the dog, it will be in distress and will ruin your trip. Other than the size, make sure the kayak is light enough to be able to support the additional weight of your dog. Weight factor can still be ignored for toy breeds, but if your dog is bulky, then it is essential to consider the weight restrictions. You can find different sizes and designs of kayaks easily at http://baysports.com.au/.
Besides size and weight, make sure that your kayak has decent stability. Different designs and qualities of kayaks have different stability levels. If you kayak is not stable enough, it will sway too much in choppy waters which can make your dog grumpy. Therefore, look for a design that can resist rough waters as much as possible. You can check a variety of kayaks for a different size, weight, and stability here.
Train Your Dog
Once you are sure that you have the right kayak and the equipment, train your dog to get familiarize with it. The best way to train your dog is to do it on land when the kayak is still. Teach him the right way to sit in the kayak. Train him for the commands of getting in and getting outside of the kayak when needed. Although toy breeds and smaller dogs can be carried in and out of the kayak, you need to train bigger dogs to follow your commands. Once your dog is educated enough on the land, expose him to the waters in slow motion in shallow and still waters.
Even when your dog is fully trained for the kayak, and you are ready for a fully-fledged kayaking trip in deeper waters, it is essential that you keep some supporting equipment handy. Keep a dog harness and a dog life jacket to avoid accidents. Other than that keep some snacks and dog food so that he doesn’t get distressed due to hunger. Additionally, keep a poop bag and a first aid kit.