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Animal Health

pettech

I was interested to read an article recently written in the Guardian newspaper about wearable tech for pets. It is no surprise that our obsession with fitness bands has spilled over into the animal world - I would love to know how active my dog is when I am out of the house! From the 'Fitbark' to the 'PitPat' and 'Whistle', fitness trackers for dogs are giving us insights into our pets activity and health. 

This technology is something I have been exploring, considering its use by superyacht animals – as both a tracker and as a complementary tool in remote veterinary care. The latest devices can relay essential information back to vet, owner or carer about the health and wellbeing of animals. Not only does this mean that accurate information about an pet is easily and quickly accessible from any distance, it could mean that any problems could potentially detected and treated faster, making a 'fitness' device an essential tool in remote veterinary medicine. This is ideally suited to superyacht animals, who often rely on a level of remote veterinary care. particularly when yachts are cruising in remote locations or for long periods. Starla is currently the guinea pig for these technologies in the SVS camp and based on what we find it could well be rolled out to all superyacht pets being looked after by us. 
 
With pet technology I think we are only just getting warmed up, and figures published in the aforementioned article agree, with the industry of wearable pet tech predicted by a source to be worth $2.3 billion by 2022. True, not every product released is going to be useful (pet to human translators leave me unconvinced with most things animals want to ‘say’ already picked up by their attuned owners), and no device will ever be able to replace direct veterinary care and an owners own knowledge of their animals health and wellbeing, but they can definitely complement them. The future of pet tech is bright, and I look forward to seeing the release of more and more sophisticated devices, with superyacht pets being animals that really reap the benefit.

cruisingthemed

With the Mediterranean cruising season upon us, many yachts will be sailing to Europe to enjoy the French Riviera and the rest of the Med's stunning coastline. This means that it is time to think about the requirements for animals that will be joining their owners onboard for all or part of the season.

Import requirements still exist for Europe and there is some variability between countries in these regulations. So for yachts travelling to the Med, please get in touch with Superyacht Veterinary Service to talk about import requirements, and the support options we offer.

If you aren't heading to the Med, don't forget we offer support worldwide, and that many countries have far more complicated import regulations than those we are lucky enough to have in Europe. So for smooth sailing with pets in the Caribbean, Pacific and those intrepid sailors going even further, contact us

petfirstaid

(Human) first aid training is a basic requirement for crew on a superyacht, but have you ever considered what would happen if faced with an animal emergency, rare as they are? When at sea, some simple skills can make the world of difference in such a situation, and veterinary first aid is something SVS can provide training for. Essential skills include recognising ‘normal’, assessing vitals, being able to report accurately to a vet about the pet’s condition, and keeping them as safe and calm as possible until help arrives. We can talk you through the essentials of a pet first aid kit and the prevention and treatment of common ailments you might come across with seafaring dogs and cats. Contact us for more information. 

Keeping them Safe at Sea

 Alba looking dapper in a well-fitted, high quality life jacket

Alba looking dapper in a well-fitted, high quality life jacket

Have a pet on board is a rewarding experience for owners and crew alike, and ensuring they are safe provides peace of mind for both parties.
 
Small things can make a big difference. The most essential being the purchase of a high quality, well fitted life jacket (as modelled by Alba in the above photo) and having researched and tested those on the market, SVS can advise and supply you with the best there is. Equally, a pet first aid kit ensures you have everything you need to hand, if needed. Depending on where you are going, and for how long, SVS can provide you with a personalised pet first aid kit that contains all the essentials for veterinary care at sea. This can range from the most basic essentials to a fully comprehensive kit - talk to us about what you need. 

For certain pets, bigger safety features might be needed, such as the addition of railings, dog-appropriate door sensors and modified swim platforms. For new builds, these features might be incorporated from the start, whereas others may be adapted at refit, or for the sole purpose of having a pet on board. We can advise you on what is needed. Pets are a member of the family, and no less consideration should be given to their safety on board than a child’s! 

Food, Glorious Food

When a pet joins you on a superyacht, it is important that both you and they have everything they need for their trip. There are so many pet products out there, and SVS has been doing the hard work for you, testing all the products a superyacht crew or owner might want for their pets. These products range from high-quality pet foods for the dogs who aren’t treated to chef-cooked meals (…and for those who are, we also supply nutritional advice), to water toys, to sympathetically designed beds, nautical collars and leashes. We understand but the quality and the aesthetic needed for any toys or equipment that is going to be aboard a superyacht and the importance of a wholesome and delicious diet. Our favourite food is a slow roasted free range roasted chicken and sweet potato food. Yum.

On the practical side of things, cleaning products that remove stains and don’t damage high quality furnishings are constantly put to the test, as although accidents are uncommon, it is important to know you have the right products to deal with them. Pet shampoos, towels and grooming products (trust us, the furminator is a dog hair-reducing dream) are put through strict quality control tests by the superyacht dogs here at SVS HQ – meaning that we don’t recommend or supply anything that hasn’t first received our seal of approval. Knowing you have the right products makes keep the yacht clean a far easier and faster task. Ask us all about it.