Dogs and inflatables

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by Guy Gregory, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. Guy Gregory

    Guy Gregory Active Member

    My most reliable fishing partner is my dog. Always wants to go, doesn't mind falling in, has all his own stuff and never outfishes me, never tells me I shoulda been here yesterday.

    He's a retriever, about 70 lbs. So I can't take him on my toon, together we're just too big. But I'd like to get an inflatable pontoon or raft for drifting. In your experience, what kind of floor should I look for, and have you any other advice about dogs and inflatables?
  2. iggie

    iggie New Member

    My dog spends more time on the tubes.

  3. Blue

    Blue Active Member

    If you get pontoon or a raft with the cloth floor, have you thought about a chunk of carpeting instead of wood?
  4. Itchy Dog

    Itchy Dog Some call me Kirk Werner

    I've seen photos of guys who take moderately sized dogs on their Water masters. It's a decent sized area behind the rower's seat.
  5. Dan Nelson

    Dan Nelson Hiker, Fisher, Writer, Bum

    My lab (65#) rides behind me on my Scadden Assault XXX while my wife takes the front seat. I have a section of fabric down for her the dog to lie on though that's more for her comfort than to protect the boat. On rivers, I also have her wear a flotation vest even though she's a great swimmer. This helps protect her from swift water entrapment AND it has a grip on the top (sort of like a suitcase handle) so if she goes off the boat, I can help her easily get back in.
  6. PT

    PT Physhicist

    My lab/labs have ridden on the back of my 8' Bucks, every pontoon since, rafts, DB's and Watermaster. Even rides between my feet on my 50cc Honda scooter when I'm running my own shuttles.

    I've always built a fairly lightweight platform behind the rowers seat for the hound/hounds. It's really quite easy IF you want to make room for a dog.

    Attached Files:

    Alex MacDonald and Dan Nelson like this.
  7. Guy Gregory

    Guy Gregory Active Member

    Thanks, all. When I had my driftboat, my old dog rode in the rear seat. As I move to an inflatable, I'm a bit worried about toenails and punctures, but nobody seemed to mention any issues there. I'm also wondering about getting stuck between the floor and the tubes in a self bailing raft, but the solutions you illustrate PT seem really workable for those worries, and better for the dogs, all mine like to be up high and see stuff. Dan's absolutely right about the the past I've used the floatcoat I use during duck season but I can see the "handle" notion to be a very good idea.

    Cheers, thanks for your answers.
  8. PT

    PT Physhicist

    GG, if you're worried about claws and punctures you might consider a different boat...;) Rafts are quite tough. As for paws getting stuck? Dogs are smart aminals. It may happen but I'm guessing they'd learn after the first time. Raising them up on a platform gives more space for gear anyway.
  9. Derek Young

    Derek Young 2011 Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide Of The Year

    Don't buy a cheap inflatable, and you won't have to worry about claws.
  10. Dipnet

    Dipnet aka Tim Hartman

    Now that's a husband that takes good care of his wife!!! :D;):D
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  11. Dan Nelson

    Dan Nelson Hiker, Fisher, Writer, Bum

    Good catch! As a writer, I know better than to screwup my pronoun/subject agreements. :confused:
  12. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

    I never had a problem with dogs in the boats (and I've always had big labs in the 70+ # range). Never had a problem using the trampoline floors in my cats, but never had a dog in our rafts back in the day (only used the rafts pretty much for whitewatering).
  13. Derek Young

    Derek Young 2011 Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide Of The Year

    Here's a raft with a custom-built dog platform on the back. A couple of quick disconnects, and the back seat is right back on. Spoiled dog, anyways.... _DSC0303.JPG
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  14. jumbo215

    jumbo215 Jasper hickman

    I made a sweet dog platform for mine and all he wants to do is creep out to the very end of the pontoon, untill he falls off. Fast forward 20 mins and hes creepen out to the same spot and.... repeat. My only advice for dogs and boats is a life jacket for your dog with a HD strap do drag him back on the boat with!
  15. jessejames

    jessejames Flyslinger

    Hi Guy, hows it going? We are lovin' it in AZ.
    When we had a self bailing raft the dogs did ok but because they were on the floor they were constantly wet, and in some weather wet and cold.
    I tried a small platform one of them did ok the other would not use it.
    Got rid of the raft and never did find something that would work for the dogs.
    I have a ten year old Aussie that would love to go with me but it would have to be in a dry boat like a driftie or pram
    Guy Gregory likes this.
  16. Alex MacDonald

    Alex MacDonald Dr. of Doomology

    that's your job, Derek: spoil the dog. Can't overdo it, at least as far as the dog's concerned!:D One of these days I'm going to have to see how my two hounds do in the Clack!
  17. bushwacker

    bushwacker Member

    I've fished a pontoon with both my Brittany and Golden over the years. I covered the back deck of the pontoon with artificial grass covering. You get quite a few looks on a busy lake, but the dogs seem happy to be with you, rather than being back in the truck watching.

    However, my new golden who has had a modified upland season at 10 months and a full duck season at a year, might present a problem. I recently took him with me on the Yak fishing Skwalas, and on two occasions he jumped off the bank and retreived the hooked fish. Not exactly what you want in on stillwater.

    The other consideration is rowing your pontoon back to the takeout in a headwind with a 70# anchor sitting on the deck.
  18. GWJ

    GWJ New Member

    I've owned a Watermaster and currently have an Assault XX. My 75lb dalmation rides on the rear deck behind the rower's seat. She's got nails like Freddy Kruger but I don't think they'd puncture either boat. I typically lay down a folded up blanket or beach towel for her comfort. I also put her in a life vest both for her safety and also because of the handle that is built into the vest for helping her back in the boat. The nice thing about the Assault XX is when she is with me on the back cargo area, I can throw all my gear and cooler on the front deck.
  19. Shapp

    Shapp Active Member

    Our family dogs seam to always make it in the boat, drift boat, raft kayak. For rafting, make sure to put foam on top of any boxes or coolers to reduce the slippery factor. A life jacke should always be worn by you, and fido likes the life jacket as well, or at least the humans like the handle on top to easily yard the wet mess back in the boat when they take an expected or unexpected dip.










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