Leaving for vacation can be difficult and stressful when you have to leave your four-legged friend behind. With these tips, you won’t have to leave your pet behind for your sailing holiday. Tubber has put together everything you need to know about sailing with pets, making it possible and fun!

Cat on deckImage Source @ Olchick Marks-Goloenko/Flickr

Before you leave

Travel regulations vary depending on the country, take time to inform yourself of the regulations on animal quarantine in your destination country. Make sure you also have the proper documentation for your pets. To get this information, the best option is contacting local authorities.

For example, if you’re travelling in Europe, you will need a pet passport. The passport will need to be signed by an officially approved veterinary surgeon. You should also have your pet microchipped, if you haven’t already, as it is required in almost every country.

Keep your pet’s vaccination record up to date and plan ahead if you think your pet will need additional vaccinations before your trip. Sailing with pets is easy to do as long as you plan early since applying for documents and proper vaccinations can take time.

Before booking, make sure pets are allowed or if it will cost extra to bring your pets aboard.

Safety on board

If your pet is active and depending on weather conditions, it’s advisable to secure the outside of the boat with a net. Cats and dogs should also wear lifejackets at all times onboard the boat. If it’s too warm, you could also use a harness, this will ensure that your pet is comfortable but you can still easily grab them out of the water if needed.

Doggie LifejacketImage Source @ DSCN2703/Flickr

Steep steps or narrow jetties can cause problems for your pet but we have easy solutions to help you and your pet. Nonslip rubber mats will make running up and down the steps easier for your pets. Make sure to pack a light carpet or blanket to drape across narrow jetties.


Going to the bathroom while sailing the seas can be tricky for pets, especially dogs. Create a special dog toilet, like a fake patch of grass, or a cat toilet filled with sand. Begin familiarizing your dog with this technique at home, making the transition easier while on board.

If you think this isn’t an option for your pet, plan shorter sailing trips of around 3-5 hours so your dog may go comfortably on land. Even though cats have it significantly easier, place the cat toilet below deck where it is more stable.

Sun Protection and Seasickness

Animals can get seasick just like people. Make sure there are always enough shaded areas on board for your pet to rest, and plenty of fresh water. It’s easier on your pet’s stomach if you halve food portions during your sailing holiday. If your pet still becomes sick, there are other remedies to help. Ask your vet about what medicines are safe for your pet to take if they become seasick.

More tips for sailing with pets

Playing on the beach and in the water is a fun activity, especially for dogs. Keep in mind that when the rest of the family is relaxing on board, your pets may get bored and be ready to play. Pack enough toys to ensure your pet is always occupied.

Image Source @ mel byrne/Flickr

Create a small spot or corner on the boat for your pet to feel safe if they want to relax during the holiday. Put some blankets or toys from home in the space so they will feel as comfortable as possible.

Cover Image Source @ OwenCorgi/Flickr