Honey Dog Don’t Do Drama

The best boat people never rush. They’re always in control. They don’t create drama.

That’s why my dog Honey loves them.

Because Honey Dog don’t do drama.

Honey the golden retriever don't do boat drama.

Everything is under control so I can take a nap.

Drama at the Dock

The most tense moments on a boat are arriving at or leaving a dock.

The only place you’re more likely to see a couple arguing is in a bathroom being wallpapered.

Picture it. When you arrive at a dock, one person is in charge of steering the boat and managing the boat’s speed. The other crew member must jump easily from the moving boat onto the stationary dock and tie the boat off before the wind sends it off course or smashes it into the dock.

When you leave a dock, one person has to untie the lines and jump aboard while the person on the helm has to make sure she doesn’t hit the dock or any other boats on the way out.

Meander at anchor in Price Creek.

It’s always a beautiful sight to come back to Meander at anchor and find she’s still in the exact same place.

Our dog Honey likes to be in the middle of everything.

Honey the golden retriever is relieved to see Meander at anchor.

Thank goodness the big boat is still here. I was starting to worry about my bear.

If one of us goes to bed without her, Honey will whine until she’s moved up to the v-berth. Underway, she likes to sit on the lap of whoever is not on the helm.

But if Honey suspects there will be the least bit of drama leaving a dock, she sleeps until it’s all over.

It’s a Sign

In our last anchorage, we had a little bit of drama bringing up the anchor.

Despite using all his strength, Mike was struggling to lift our 35 pound anchor.

Eventually he pulled in enough of the anchor rode to find a big, matted ball of grass on the line. It was bigger than the anchor. And it weighed more than the anchor.

We had to chop away at it, removing the grass a bit at a time, until the anchor was free to be lifted. It took us nearly an hour.

During all that time, Honey was absolutely still and silent in the cabin.

Honey the golden retriever in bed.

You’re the only person I know who worries because a dog likes to sleep in.

Y’know, now that I think of it, when Honey didn’t beg to be brought up into the cockpit when we started the engine, I should have known.

When Honey chooses to sleep in when we leave a dock or anchorage, it’s a sign.

Prepare for drama.

How Do Dogs Know

You’ve probably heard as many stories as I have about dogs’ mysterious powers of knowing. They can sense danger, ghosts, and bad weather.

Honey can sense boat drama.

If I’m at the helm and see Honey jumping up on the companionway stairs begging to come up to the cockpit, I know it’s going to be a stress-free start.

Honey the golden retriever returns to Meander in the dinghy.

No drama here. Just coming back from our walk on the beach.

But if Honey stays curled up on the settee while we’re getting ready to get underway? Watch out! Drama is coming.

A Bark of Confidence

When we leave a dock or anchorage, I’ll admit it: I feel a little nervous. Every time.

And if in the middle of things Honey looks up at my from the cabin and gives a little demand bark, I get irritated.

But maybe I’m thinking about it all wrong.

Maybe that demand bark isn’t saying, “Woof—Let me up there right away.”

Instead, maybe I should be hearing, “Woof—You got this. And I just want to watch.”

Honey the golden retriever wants to go up in the cockpit.

I don’t sense any drama. I want up in the cockpit.

Because if there was something to be worried about, Honey wouldn’t want to be anywhere nearby. Because Honey Dog don’t do drama.

Your Turn: Does your dog ever anticipate trouble before it happens? How can you tell?


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  1. Dogs are so in tune with what’s going on. Makes you wonder what is happening in those furry heads.

  2. My dogs seem to love drama…not to participate, but to watch. Our lives are pretty boring so I don’t blame them.

  3. Honey found her own job. Clever dog.

  4. Love it! My girls hate to be around drama – they will find a hiding place and stay there until it’s over – UNLESS they are the ones causing it.

    Ducky is a drama princess. Shadow will usually just curl up and go to sleep or bark at Ducky or one of us to make her stop.

  5. Lovely pictures, I always enjoy these glimpses of your life at sea.

  6. Ginny Benson says:

    Always so many things to consider but unless you’re living it, you don’t realize “how” things are done with a dog on a boat….I still marvel at how you get Honey on and off the boat.

  7. I hope you saved the grass for Honey’s “convenience”! 😀

  8. I’m always, always trying to figure out what my little ones are thinking. Honey is so beautiful! Look at that smile 🙂

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