This seemed like a good idea at the time.
Shawn was out of town this weekend, so I thought Mowgli and I should do a little paddling by ourselves. Last summer, when we took the dog with us, he was constantly trying to jump out of the boat to swim to the other person. Maybe, I thought, if I was by myself, he would be content to stay with me.
We arrived at the boat launch, and Mowgli was excited. There were a number of other people around, so I tried to keep him on the leash while simultaneously getting the boat ready to go (amateur mistake #1). Some others paddlers were just coming off the water, and offered to hold him, but I declined (amateur mistake #2).
When I was finally ready to go, I got Mowgli in the boat and then sat behind him. And then he jumped out. And then I got up, grabbed him, and got him back in the boat. And then he jumped out. You see where this going. We provided a great show for at least twenty minutes to all the bystanders at the boat launch area.
We finally got out onto the water, and Mowgli sat facing me. Success! I thought (amateur mistake #3). Until five minutes later, when we wanted to turn around. And then, instead of sitting on the floor of the kayak, he wanted to sit on the edge. And then he jumped out.
Thankfully, I had been sticking close to shore, in the slight chance that this might happen. After corralling him into the boat once again, I decided we should probably head back to the boat launch.
We had a few close calls; thankfully he has a big furry patch right above his tail that I continued to grab and pull him down to a seated position without hurting him. As we paddled back, he started whining, and it occurred to me: Maybe Mowgli doesn’t actually like kayaking.
I think we’ll take a break from kayaking together for a while.
Do you paddle with your dog? Do you have any strategies to keep them in the boat?