We all cherish the moments spent with our pets, and some of the most special ones involve sharing our favorite hobbies and activities with them.
For David Bahnson, a retired orthopedic surgeon from Vermont, the two great loves of his life were traveling with his dogs and kayaking. In 2015, he took his devotion to the next level by ingeniously creating a custom kayak tailored specifically to accommodate his beloved dogs.
David ingeniously transformed a kayak’s storage hatch into a perfectly shaped “dog-sized hole,” with just enough space for his dog Susie. The modification didn’t leave room for another human but created the ideal spot for his furry companion. To prevent water from splashing in, he added a removable ring.
Explaining his motivation, David said, “Our dogs have always loved to travel with us in cars, in my airplane, in boats. Building a way for them to kayak with us just seemed like a logical choice, and the boats are fun to build anyway.”
When a second dog, Ginger, joined the family, David expanded the kayak to accommodate both dogs, creating a second “doggie hole” in what he humorously referred to as a “triple kayak.”
This dog-friendly kayak allowed David to indulge in his favorite hobby with his faithful dogs right beside him. The dogs, in turn, relished the unique experience of a kayak ride.
“They seem to love it,” David shared. “They get excited when we’d pull the kayaks out and see that we were going. They are trained to get in the kayak themselves on command. They sit down, and off we go.”
Although Susie and Ginger have crossed the rainbow bridge, it’s evident that they enjoyed some incredibly special moments with their devoted owner, and that’s what truly matters.
The legacy of the doggie kayak lives on, passed down to a new generation. David shared, “My wife and her friends still use the kayaks, and she takes our newest golden, Piper, along with her.”
Expressing his deep affection for his dogs, David emphasized, “I love my dogs. I love training them, the companionship. We’ve gone miles and miles of paddling with our dogs. They just really enjoy going places.”
What a fantastic and thoughtful idea! It’s clear that these dogs cherished their time kayaking with their owner on the water.