Are Dogs Required To Have Life Jackets On Boats?

The boating community will tell you that dogs love riding boats as much as we do. But while there are clear instructions that apply to humans, does the same apply to dogs?

You must know that people are required to have life jackets on. But what about dogs? Well, officially, dogs aren’t required to have life jackets. But many experts suggest that they do indeed have them on.

Why? Well to answer that question, you will have to continue reading. With all that said, let’s start.

Not Every Dog Is A Swimming Expert


The first reason why dogs should have life jackets while boating is the simple fact that not every dog swims like a pro. While dogs do indeed know how to swim, many have trouble staying afloat. This one really depends on the dog. It doesn’t matter if your dog is big or small, everyone can have trouble swimming.

Not only that, but you can imagine the panic if it would go overboard during high speeds. Additionally, many different breeds of dogs have different stamina levels. Some might swim more while others tire out pretty fast.

Many Can Get Tired

The previous point puts us nicely towards the second reason why dogs should have life jackets. Breeds like the Yorkshire Terrier and Shih Tzu are notorious for having very low stamina. If one would go overboard, then who knows how long they can last. Many breeds of dogs don’t have trouble with this one; particularly the Portuguese Water Dog. But sadly, the simple fact that not every breed can last the same amount of time in the water is something that should raise a few eyebrows.

Whenever boating, don’t risk your dog’s life and instead get them a life jacket.

Unfortunately, Boating Accidents Can Happen


The third reason why to get one is the simple fact that accidents can happen at any time. Boating might be a fun activity for the whole family, but that doesn’t make it risk-proof. Even more, you’ll need to take extra steps to make sure your dog is also safe.

A life jacket does exactly that. No one can predict when an accident occurs. You never know if your dog might suffer a stroke, seizure, or panic attack while in the water. Also, physical harm might make it unable to swim. And when that happens, the only way to save them is to prepare in advance.

By putting on a life jacket, you make sure your dog stays afloat in the case of going overboard.

Who Knows What’s In the Water

Another reason why your canine should always have a life jacket is because of potential hazards in the water. Let’s not ignore the fact that not every lake or ocean we sail on is crystal clear. Some might hide all kinds of debris that present themselves as safety hazards. Encountering stuff like sharp objects, nets, and branches do preset potentially life-threatening situations.

In addition, everybody of water is different. On one day, the

water might be very calm, while on another day it might have very strong tides. Smaller dogs will have a much harder time staying afloat in strong currents. This in addition to their small size can drift them out to sea. That is something you don’t want happening.

And to prevent that, make sure to get your dog the coolest life jacket out there. If you’re looking for one such jacket, make sure to visit this website.

Your Dog Might Save Your Life


Let’s be real about it. Our beloved companions will do anything for us. Not only that, but they will give their lives for us.

When boating, it’s not unusual for you to fall in the water. When boating with your beloved companion, the first thing they will do is jump after you. If you happened to be not be wearing one, and your dog does, then that could potentially save your life.

By having something to keep a canine afloat, they will keep you afloat as well. This means that they can potentially save your life. Even if we humans can be quite stubborn about things, especially life jackets when fishing from a boat, your dog won’t. They will gladly wear anything you put on them.

What To Look For In A Life Jacket?

So we might have convinced you to indeed put a life jacket on your beloved companion. But what exactly should you be looking at when buying one?

Make Sure It Fits

The first thing to do is get the right fit. A life jacket should be comfortable for the wearer, and that also includes a canine. A canine should be able to do a wide range of movements while wearing one. Not to mention that we have dog-specific life jackets that enable them to use their arms and legs freely.

Have A Top Handle


Both big and small dogs benefit from a life jacket with a top handle. Especially in the case of smaller canines, a top handle enables you to carry the puppy and pick it up. This can come especially useful if it goes overboard. By simply grabbing the top handle, you can get the puppy out of the water safely and without any fuss.


A colorful life jacket will allow you to spot it from much afar. If you get a black one, then you’ll have a much harder time doing that if it happens to fall in the water during nighttime. A bright and colorful jacket, preferably fluorescent, will allow you to easily spot the canine when flashing your light in the water.

Teacup Puppies and Their Need for Life Jackets

While we’ve discussed the importance of life jackets for dogs, it’s crucial to emphasize the unique needs of teacup puppies. These miniature toy dogs, like those available at, are especially delicate and can be more susceptible to the dangers of open water. 

Their petite size and often lower stamina make them even more vulnerable if they were to go overboard. These tiny dogs, known for their exquisite micro teacup puppies, emphasizes the importance of safety for these tiny canines. 

If you’re a proud owner of one of these tiny treasures, consider investing in a life jacket that’s specifically designed for their size and needs. After all, ensuring their safety means ensuring the joy they bring to our lives remains uninterrupted.


That concludes our article explaining why a dog should have a life jacket when boating. While not necessary by law, it is something you should definitely consider when going boating with your beloved companion. Lastly, we hope that this article will convince you to go out and buy a jacket that will fit, have a top handle, and be colorful enough to stop it from afar.