You can go on a houseboat vacation with your pet since there are houseboats for hire companies that welcome cats and dogs on board. But when you bring along your beloved pet, you have to know the things involved when deciding which houseboat or location may be best for you.

Not all houseboat locations permit pets on their vessels, but around 60% of marinas do. Generally, those that allow pets charge a small fee (if any) depending on the pet’s size or to cover any intense cleaning that would be involved. Some houseboat rental companies have specific boats set aside for pet lovers, while other houseboat locations have some restrictions on certain boat models.

Trained cats and dogs are a must. And in some locations, you might be required to hire a small motor boat if you are not already brining one for trips back to shore. Some marina would require you to keep your pets crated during the night. Some general rules include: keep dogs leashed while they’re on shore, and clean up after them.

Also, it is a good idea to invest in a bright coloured life vest and/or durable boots to prevent your pet from stepping on sharp things that may be in the water or on the shore, while your pet is outside strolling.

It is highly advised that you let your agent know in advance to arrange a houseboat trip for you and your pet. Let him know what type of pet you are bringing and its approximate weight. You will be informed regarding fees, restrictions, and/or requirements (if any) that are involved in your rental. If the houseboat you are interested in does not allow any pets, your agent will find a comparable boat that accommodates animals.

Make sure you know how pets go to the bathroom on the boat. You have the option to wash deposits left on the bow and stern using hoses; you can also timing potty breaks when your boat is on shore; or you can bring with you a portable potty intended for pets.

Before your trip, make sure your dog is introduced to a canine life vest. Give treats and praises during the introduction. It would be helpful if you choose a vest with a hand grip on top. This allows you to easily grab your pet if it accidentally fell in the water. Make sure you bring everything your pet needs. Bring your pet’s favourite treats, beddings, some toys, water and food bowls with non-slip surfaces.

Also, bring several towels because your pet will board the houseboat from the shore with wet and/or muddy paws. Take note that entry points to upper decks are narrow and steep, but have slip-proof backings. You could easily cradle a small dog or cat, but for a larger dog, you might need another person on the top deck and another one on the bottom to usher the animal up one step to the other. And of course, have fun with your pet

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You can go on a houseboat vacation with your pet since there are houseboats for hire companies that welcome cats and dogs on board. But when you bring along your beloved pet, you have to know the things involved when deciding which houseboat or location may be best for...