My challenge: to take Ollie (at the time, a five-month-old Border Terrier puppy) on our regular summer sea-kayaking trips on Georgian Bay. Canoeing with a dog is easy. Kayaking with a dog seemed a bit more difficult. So I dreamt up a contraption that would allow Ollie to join us on these kayaking trips. Thanks to my Dad helping in the construction!
Witness it, in situ:
My criteria in the creation of the crate:
- Traction: Kayak decks are fibreglass with a shiny gelcoat. Ollie would need a surface that would allow him some sort of gription as dog nails on gelcoat doesn’t really work.
- An edge: In wavy conditions, the kayak can pitch quite suddenly. Having something that would contain the dog would help him stay on the boat while in swells seemed important.
- Sun protection: All day kayaking without sun protection would equal fried puppy. My perfect design would offer some kind of sun protection.
- Wind sturdy: Winds on Georgian Bay can be fierce (for example we had one evening this trip of ~ 45 km / h winds or 6 on the Beaufort Scale). Any extras (such as the sun protection) would have to stand up to a whipping wind.
- Waterproof: This seems obvious.
- Protects the Kayak: Since the Kayaks aren’t mine, I figured it would be bad if it ended up scratching the kayak when installed.
So with these criteria in mind, I set to creatin’. Since the kayak crate was a success, I’ve provided an illustrated step-by-step guide if you’re interested in making one yourself.