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Nordhavn Pet Adventure

Morgan – Schipperke (dog)


Name:  Francie and Mike Bennett

Boat name: Wolfie (named after our first Schipperke, Wolfie)

Boat model: Nordhavn 40

Years cruising with pet: one with Morgan (he is one this month) and we lived aboard three years with Wolfie


Funniest moment: For some reason Morgan was afraid of steps on the boat and would not climb them. Dave "the dog whisperer" Balfour took it upon himself to fix this, maybe an obligation to post-commissioning service. He failed to such an extent that we think poor little Morgan was traumatized. At Dave's next visit, Morgan greeted him by promptly rolling onto his back and peeing all over Dave. He has done twice since then, both to Dave and no one else. Despite this, they have become friends although Morgan thinks Dave's dog, Champaign is a bit too gregarious for his liking.


Scariest moment:  Morgan gets so excited when he gets on the dock that he runs around like a maniac and comes close to flying in the water.  The first time Wolfie fell in, I jumped in after him, fully dressed!

Most treasured pet memories:  The three of us sitting on the foredeck at anchor watching the sunset after a long day.


Unexpected/unanticipated difficulties:  the fur...everywhere.  Having to lock Morgan in his crate, in a cabin with the door closed whenever we are doing anything like docking, anchoring, etc. He gets so upset by our strange activity or resents not being the center of attention for a few minutes while we attend to boat necessities.


Unexpected/unanticipated joys:  the constant entertainment.  Morgan gets the zoomies and runs back and forth in the cockpit.  He is also glad Nordhavn built in peep holes for him to watch his surroundings.


Worst thing about traveling with pets:  finding outdoor places to eat with the dog. We don't like too leave him on the boat when anchored or on a mooring. 


Best thing about traveling with pets:  Schipperkes are bred as watch dogs so he barks at nearly everything. We think that is why no one anchors near us.


Advice: Be prepared for spending a lot of time caring for it. For some reason on a boat it seems to require much more effort.


Other:  The confines and unique experience of living on a boat amplify relationships with others.   When we lost our beloved shipmates Wolfie and Scooter our African Grey parrot, we were devastated and wondered how life aboard would ever be the same. They shared our adventure aboard our Nordhavn from the outset and were as much crew mates to us as any human. We miss them dearly.



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