Article by: Jean-Marc Claes
Weird, strange, supernatural or even animals, the scuba world is a playground for many possibilities, events and more!
In this series of achievements, we will cover subjects that might appear somewhat strange to encounter below the surface.
Just imagine how a fish would feel when encountering a scuba diver, let alone a fully decorated technical diver with a rebreather and six bail-out tanks!
Here we go:
The scuba diving dog and more scuba animals!
Although many animals (or pets) undertake adventures outside their typical habitat, seeing a dog/cat scuba dive is a rather strange sight for the human eye!
But believe me, it is possible and done!
You, as a diver, do not need to limit your choice of pets to a turtle, goldfish or anything more significant that doesn’t fit your bathtub!
Doing some research on taking our beloved dog below the surface already goes back to the 1980s.
The first mention of pet owners taking their dog or cat diving goes back that far or even further? A crazy world it is!
I must admit that even I have taken my favourite pet below the surface! My pet, a small parrot, was always with me during my younger years, even riding my motorbike or going swimming. One day, after buying a new underwater video camera housing, I calculated how much air supply was in the camera housing AND how much oxygen a small parrot uses a minute after making and verifying these calculations. Next, I started making my parrot familiar with the housing inside and guess what? She liked it very much in there (perhaps thinking it was a nesting cabinet?).
It was then time for some pool trials, and as those tests proved not to be a problem, we started going into the lake where she could meet the local fish.
During the many scuba dives, she always remained extraordinarily calm and interacted with the fish, using her beak to touch the front glass plate of the underwater housing. As the housing was pressurised, there were no worries about pressure and equalisation!
The next step?
On April 1st, 2013, PADI launched a Pet Diver Certification Course.
The course was designed to bond the pet owners underwater with their dogs and cats.
A first-of-its-kind scuba dive training program exclusively for dogs and cats (why not parrots?).
With this certification, pet owners can now enjoy the wonders of the underwater world with their four-legged companions, along with the added convenience of no longer having to find a pet sitter when the deep blue calls.
The announcement created a lot of reactions on social media, but as the date indicated, it was April Fool’s Day.
The only easy way to take your pet diving would be to take your goldfish out on a scuba tour.
But then again, how to keep them from not just swimming off into the blue? Maybe just by using a buddy line?
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