Pampered sea dogs
By Patrick Barnham
Barking mad dog owners are pampering their spoilt pooches by decking them out in sailing gear.
Worried that their doggy paddlers might catch a cold or even drown, owners are shelling out for designer wet suits and life jackets.
It is the latest summer craze – nautical fashion worn by only the trendiest of dogs.
The suits keep swimming-mad pets warm in chilly Scottish waters and safety conscious sailors are even fitting their mutts with canine life jackets.
The wet suits come in a colourful kitsch design, cool camouflage and sleek black.
Carol Wiseman of the Dog Shop in Alford, Aberdeenshire, said pet owners are always on the look-out for something new.
She said: “Most dogs love to swim so it is important to keep pets warm and
“Some dogs just don’t know when to stop and will stay in the water for longer than is good for them.
“I’ve heard stories of dogs slipping off the decks of boats and even jumping
over the side if they see something on a nearby boat or the shore that takes their fancy.
“The life jackets have a special loop on the back of them so the dogs can be picked up out of the water with a boat hook.”
David and Jane Taylor of nearby Aboyne bought a pair of wet suits for their
two dogs Cal and Glenn. “They are like a couple of kids,” said Jane.
“They love swimming and thrashing about. We throw sticks into the river and they race to be the first to get to them.
“Then they come running back with their sticks looking really pleased with
“One of the best things about the suits is you don’t get soaked when they have a good shake after climbing out of the water.”