Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-08-2021, 03:22 PM   #1
Member
 
City: Seattle
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 11
Indoor cats

We're looking at possible liveaboards, well in advance. We won't be able to move in for a good three years but I want to know what I'm doing by then.

Problem: we have three cats who have never gone outdoors (on purpose, at least) and freak out when they get out accidentally. I can't trust them to be safe on a boat unless they're kept as they are now: full-time indoors. And almost every boat I've seen that's designed for full time living is also, unsurprisingly, designed to optimize for indoor-outdoor living and deliberate blurring of the lines.

Do there exist boats where it's easier to separate indoor and outdoor space all the time, keeping the inside closed off unless someone's actually going through a door? What should I look for to find one? Or is this the kind of thing I would need to handle by getting my own boat's interior redesigned from the hull on up, in order to make it work for us? (We may have to do that anyhow eventually, because we're not young and might need to reconfigure for accessibility down the line, but that's not a short term problem. If we have to get the accessibility handled by a refit in a decade or so, we'll worry about it then.)
__________________
Advertisement

PocketNaomi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 03:56 PM   #2
Guru
 
Simi 60's Avatar
 
City: Queensland
Vessel Model: Milkraft 60 converted timber prawn trawler
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3,357
Your cat will go where it wants, no need for you to do anything
__________________

Simi 60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 03:58 PM   #3
Member
 
City: Seattle
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 11
Thankfully, our cats have not yet figured out how to evolve opposable thumbs. So doors with doorknobs can actually keep them locked in. We've learned not to use doors with lever handles, though... those, they can operate. I'm not sure about sliders.
PocketNaomi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 04:12 PM   #4
Veteran Member
 
PamLeatch's Avatar
 
City: Sydney
Vessel Name: Poseidon
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 50 MK1
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 33
We have two cats that we (mostly) keep on board, inside or on deck. It’s very easy when we’re on anchor! Sometimes at a berth one cat jumps off and tries to go exploring! At marinas where we stay, if cats are permitted, they’re supposed to stay onboard, so we watch them closely. We keep them inside when we’re not around or when it gets dark, but we let them on deck during the day when we’re onboard. We didn’t change the boat to suit the cats and they roam freely inside, except the engine room. Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_8686.jpg
Views:	34
Size:	121.5 KB
ID:	115378
PamLeatch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 04:17 PM   #5
Member
 
City: Seattle
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 11
Pam, your cats are adorable! That's the way I would like to do it with ours, but they've never been outdoors before except when they escaped by mistake and then they REALLY hate it -- they get frantic and run around looking desperately for somewhere to hide. The Big Blue Room, as my kid calls the outdoors from the cats' point of view, is pretty terrifying to them.

If we can teach them that the deck areas of the boat are still their space and it's okay, that they don't need to be afraid of wind or spray or similar strange sensations they've never felt before, it would be great to be able to let them out on deck. But I'm worried that we'll need to introduce them to it very carefully or they might lose it completely and fall in while they're scrambling around trying to find their way back to safety the first time they feel an outdoor breeze.
PocketNaomi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 05:00 PM   #6
Guru
 
ancora's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 3,850
Our cat Spanky of course, has the run of the boat. He plops wherever he want to.
Attached Thumbnails
Helm Cat.jpg   In the way cat..jpg  
ancora is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 05:35 PM   #7
Guru
 
Simi 60's Avatar
 
City: Queensland
Vessel Model: Milkraft 60 converted timber prawn trawler
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3,357
We just put ours on board and let her sort it out.
If she wants to go outside , chase swallows and roll in the sun she does
If she wants to hide in a cupboard she does that to.
Simi 60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 06:14 PM   #8
Scraping Paint
 
City: Inside Passage Summer/Columbia River Winter
Vessel Name: Alaskan Sea-Duction
Vessel Model: 1988 M/Y Camargue YachtFisher
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 7,082
So I have been told that it is easier on you and your cat if you train them to be on the boat starting as kittens. True?
Alaskan Sea-Duction is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 06:59 PM   #9
Guru
 
Pete Meisinger's Avatar
 
City: Oconto, WI
Vessel Name: Best Alternative
Vessel Model: 36 Albin Aft Cabin
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,026
I have seen "boat cats" which behave very much like dogs. They jump off the boat when docked, go exploring and visiting, do their business ashore and return pretty much when they feel like it or when they hear the engine start up.

I have also see "boat cats" which never leave the boat.

The choice is pretty much up to you, or maybe the cats.

pete
Pete Meisinger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 07:28 PM   #10
Scraping Paint
 
City: Inside Passage Summer/Columbia River Winter
Vessel Name: Alaskan Sea-Duction
Vessel Model: 1988 M/Y Camargue YachtFisher
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 7,082
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Meisinger View Post
I have seen "boat cats" which behave very much like dogs. They jump off the boat when docked, go exploring and visiting, do their business ashore and return pretty much when they feel like it or when they hear the engine start up.

I have also see "boat cats" which never leave the boat.

The choice is pretty much up to you, or maybe the cats.

pete
LOL cats are kings of their domain!! Good post Pete made me laugh.
Alaskan Sea-Duction is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 08:26 PM   #11
Guru
 
City: Galveston, Texas
Vessel Model: 24" El Pescador
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 676
We had 2 cats and a dog on board. Dog was more trouble. Cats just find a place..they hide in rough weather and look out the windows and sun themselves when all is calm.


Wife was always paranoid they would jump off the boat when docked so were always careful. We did see occasional posters for a missing cat up the Inside Passage about the rare cat that jumped ship.
__________________
Ken Diestler
Galveston, Tx
ktdtx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 10:33 PM   #12
Technical Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 6,164
I had an 18yr old cat that lived with me on the boat while I was tearing down my house and building another one. She was completely cool with the boat. Litter box in the fwd bunk room. She would come and go from the boat, but when heavy construction was going on, I closed her in the boat. I had her from tiny kitten size.

Once the house was done, my lady and I thought we should try the cat out on the moving boat. Did a little test run, five miles or so, and the cat was absolutely fine. Settled on the chart table and napped, sometimes watching the world go by. Big wakes or chop, she would go into the bunk rooms and settle there.

We took her on a four day run to Beaufort and back, stayed two nights in a slip. Just kept the salon door shut, she was fine every time we came back from our adventures.

If we had guests, we would close up the cat in the fwd bunk room, then the rest of the boat could stay open.

Cat was remarkably adaptive to boat life. Age caught up to her and for her comfort we left her at the house, she passed at age about 20.
Ski in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2021, 11:22 PM   #13
Guru
 
Simi 60's Avatar
 
City: Queensland
Vessel Model: Milkraft 60 converted timber prawn trawler
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3,357
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaskan Sea-Duction View Post
So I have been told that it is easier on you and your cat if you train them to be on the boat starting as kittens. True?
Ours was two years old when she moved aboard
Been off the boat twice in 4.5 years
Once on a sandbank
Once when boat was on the hard
Simi 60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 02:56 AM   #14
Guru
 
Simi 60's Avatar
 
City: Queensland
Vessel Model: Milkraft 60 converted timber prawn trawler
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3,357
Gatos del mar (cats who sail/navigate) on FB could be worth a look for some
Cats have been sailing the oceans and eating fish for hundreds of years.

Pics of Simi doing her thing
Attached Thumbnails
sketch-1598937663896~01.jpg   FB_IMG_15632585343334360~01~01.jpg   FB_IMG_15654801072974068.jpg  
Simi 60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 07:30 AM   #15
FF
Guru
 
FF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 21,845
What the cat needs most is a method of self rescuing should it go overboard.

We use a rolled up tube of carpet that goes from the water at the stern up higher than the deck, by a couple of inches.

Our cats have enjoyed riding in our rowing dink and by approaching from the stern the cat quickly learns the carpet is her express way to get aboard before us.

At least twice I have seen the cat go overboard and self rescue .

Works great , but rinsing the cat with fresh water is required, but usually is not understood or appreciated by the cat. Warm water is best.
FF is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 07:45 AM   #16
Technical Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 6,164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaskan Sea-Duction View Post
So I have been told that it is easier on you and your cat if you train them to be on the boat starting as kittens. True?
Probably, but our cat took her first ride on the boat when she was 18yr old, and was fine. Absolutely hated the car, but was fine on the boat. Strange. Guess she knew a car ride meant the vet!!
Ski in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 07:46 AM   #17
Guru
 
ScottC's Avatar
 
City: Malmö
Vessel Name: ABsolutely FABulous
Vessel Model: Greenline 33 Hybrid (2010)
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 789
You might be able to train your cats to do this. Seriously. There are books on it. Just search in Amazon. We taught ours at ~6 months of age.
Attached Thumbnails
D1.jpg  
__________________
Scott
2010 Greenline 33' Hybrid
Home port: Malmö, SWEDEN
Currently in: Gruissan, FRANCE
ScottC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 12:16 PM   #18
Veteran Member
 
WD40's Avatar
 
City: Mount Vernon, WA / La Conner, WA
Vessel Name: Otter
Vessel Model: 1985 President Sundeck 41
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 82
Curious:
Quote:
Originally Posted by PamLeatch View Post
At marinas where we stay, if cats are permitted, they’re supposed to stay onboard, so we watch them closely.
Are there marinas that don't allow cats at all?
Maybe just not be able to take them on the dock?

We lost our boat dog Sadie Lady (may she rest in peace) last summer, and are thinking of getting a boat cat.
I'd hate to pull in somewhere and get refused because we had a cat.

We really miss a dog, but looking on the bright side, it has been nice sometimes to not even have to put the dinghy in the water when we're out on the hook.

Of course the Admiral and I have been in discussions as to where to put the litter box (forward cabin), but then we'd have to move it when we have guests...more discussion...
I like ScottC's idea, but we may not find a younger cat to train as we are going to get a rescue if we decide to get one.
WD40 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 06:12 PM   #19
Member
 
City: Seattle
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by FF View Post
What the cat needs most is a method of self rescuing should it go overboard.

We use a rolled up tube of carpet that goes from the water at the stern up higher than the deck, by a couple of inches.

Our cats have enjoyed riding in our rowing dink and by approaching from the stern the cat quickly learns the carpet is her express way to get aboard before us.

At least twice I have seen the cat go overboard and self rescue .

Works great , but rinsing the cat with fresh water is required, but usually is not understood or appreciated by the cat. Warm water is best.
THANK YOU!! I have been wondering a lot about whether there was some way to create a means for the cat to self rescue if it falls overboard. Our cats are, like most, pretty good climbers; but at least one of them has been known to miss his aim occasionally when he jumps, especially if he's trying to chase a bird. I don't dare assume that he'll never fall overboard. I'm really grateful for the suggestion for how to give him a chance to get himself out again. ��
PocketNaomi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2021, 06:15 PM   #20
Guru
 
Simi 60's Avatar
 
City: Queensland
Vessel Model: Milkraft 60 converted timber prawn trawler
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3,357
Ours went over once very early on chasing swallows on the top level
Scooped her out with a landing net after she had done a lap of the boat
Smart enough to have learned and not done it again.
__________________

Simi 60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Trawler Port Captains
Port Captains are TF volunteers who can serve as local guides or assist with local arrangements and information. Search below to locate Port Captains near your destination. To learn more about this program read here: TF Port Captain Program





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:21 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012
×