A couple has been sailing and living aboard their 36-foot Morris for the past nine years with their 11-year-old standard poodle.
Sailing south on the Intracoastal Waterway, I happened to tune in a Carolina swap show on the AM dial. Someone there was looking to trade three steel-belted radial tires for a dog. It was an intriguing proposition on so many levels. We didn’t need the tires, but a little part of me did like the idea of trading away our dog, Bill. He’s more of an albatross than a dog, and he makes our liveaboard sailing life complicated.
Bill is an 11-year-old blue standard poodle. His favorite place aboard is under the shade of the dodger on the leeward side of the cockpit, preferably with a pillow to lean on. Everyone knows that’s the best seat in the house, and on our boat Bill commands it with authority. He is the captain of the ship.
In the nine years we’ve owned our 36-foot Morris Justine Sundance we have never gone sailing without Bill. In his youth, he handled the sailing motion well and moved around the boat with ease. He even once climbed the companionway ladder out of…