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View Full Version : Are pets allowed on US naval ships?


astro
02-25-2010, 12:15 AM
Just curious. Can the captain or officers on US naval vessels have pets?

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
02-25-2010, 05:32 AM
Given the risk of disease, I doubt that Shipwreck would have been allowed to keep his parrot.
Yo Joe.

:D

cochrane
02-25-2010, 06:21 AM
Makes me wonder how Captain Archer got away with taking his dog with him on theEnterprise.

Tom Tildrum
02-25-2010, 06:31 AM
Somebody's been watching Crimson Tide.

psychonaut
02-25-2010, 07:53 AM
Cats were allowed at least as recently as World War II. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ship's_cat) That link doesn't indicate whether they're still permitted today on US ships; it does say that they've since been banned from British ships.

psychonaut
02-25-2010, 07:56 AM
Oh, and apparently dogs, cats, and birds (http://www.uscg.mil/history/uscghist/Mascots_2.asp) have historically been permitted on ships of the Coast Guard. That page also has a photograph of a horse, which I assume was simply a mascot and not actually living aboard a ship. :)

electronbee
02-25-2010, 08:19 AM
No, pets are not allowed and I have never heard of anyone ever actually being allowed to have a pet. When I was on a ship there was a guy who had a sugar glider as a pet. He had to get rid of it as they are not allowed.

But, I have an actual instruction for you that outlines this:

OPNAVINST 3120.32C (http://doni.daps.dla.mil/Directives/03000%20Naval%20Operations%20and%20Readiness/03-100%20Naval%20Operations%20Support/3120.32C.pdf) Section 510.44 on Page 5-19

It basically states that without approval from the CO no pet is allowed. So, yes, there is some bizarre chance that you could have a pet put that's there for the CO to further disallow pets. Some shore commands such as an air base may specifically not allow anyone to have any pets because its an air base. Or, a single bachelor living in the barracks may not be allwoed pets but a couple living in base housing may be allowed to have pets, etc.

But, oh, I just remembered that someone ran a request to have a pet rock while in the barracks, and, he got approval!

A working animal such as a K9 would be an exception but I just asked someone who did a lot of boarding with the Coast Guard overseas and he never saw or heard of a K9 unit being on a ship.

eb

John DiFool
02-25-2010, 09:34 AM
I've seen K9 units on several movie ships (Star Trek IV, Final Countdown), FWIW...

YamatoTwinkie
02-25-2010, 09:47 AM
It basically states that without approval from the CO no pet is allowed.

So the CO could have a pet, yes?

Mr. Moto
02-25-2010, 09:47 AM
Closest I ever saw were strays that had been unofficially adopted by shore commands. I never saw a pet on a ship.

The example that comes to mind is a three-legged beagle that used to hang around EOD in Sigonella in the 1990s. The EOD sailors loved that dog. I think there was some black humor involved there - EOD being so involved in munitions disposal, they would be drawn to an animal with a missing leg.

They named him Tripod, which didn't take much imagination, admittedly.

Elendil's Heir
02-25-2010, 10:45 AM
Makes me wonder how Captain Archer got away with taking his dog with him on theEnterprise.

It's good to be the king, er, captain.

And let us not forget: http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/Spot

electronbee
02-25-2010, 12:51 PM
So the CO could have a pet, yes?

Yes, the CO could have a pet if he wanted too according to that instruction manual but that manual is also somewhat of a general/guideline type thing. There are many, many, manuals like this in the Navy. Sometimes covering the same topics and sometimes not. I'll look and ask around as there may be a health/medical related manual or instruction that may specifically state no pets on a ship. Or, that could be the only mention of it!

Due to the close-knit nature of a ship and the related health/sanitary implications I really could not see an animal, for the sake of being a pet, to be allowed on a ship. There are enough problems alone with humans.

eb

IAmNotSpartacus
02-25-2010, 01:02 PM
Somebody's been watching Crimson Tide.

A fine historical documentary, indeed. :D

cochrane
02-25-2010, 02:09 PM
Makes me wonder how Captain Archer got away with taking his dog with him on theEnterprise.

It's good to be the king, er, captain.

And let us not forget: http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/SpotYes, but the Enterprise-D had families on board, as well. It was considered good for overall morale for officers to be able to have their families and pets aboard with them. The ship was built to accommodate them. When the NCC-1701D was destroyed and replaced by the Sovereign-class E, Picard apparently gave him (and probably any other of his senior staff who wished to retain their pets) permission as one of his most senior and trusted officers to keep Spot aboard the new ship. And of course, once Data died, Spot uh...sort of "adopted" Worf as her new master. And Spot never left the ship and accompanied Data on first-contact missions.

However, "Enterprise" took place 200 years earlier as Earth's space fleet was being launched and the NX-01 was the first of her kind. It seems to me that first-contact protocols with alien races would call for strict quarantine procedures in effect so that animals like Porthos would not transmit any otherwise harmless Earth bacteria to native fauna and cause an ecological disaster.


Sorry for the hijack. ;) I know I'm geeking out a little and straying into Cafe Society territory. But the question has been answered now, so I hope a little digression is tolerated.

Surly Chick
02-25-2010, 02:58 PM
My assistant, who was in the Coast Guard for 20 years, says captains would sometimes allow "ship mascots." He also adds that dogs are prone to seasickness...

Baron Greenback
02-25-2010, 03:24 PM
The remarkable story of Unsinkable Sam (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unsinkable_Sam) - ship's cat on three vessels - Bismarck, Cossack and Ark Royal.

Chronos
02-25-2010, 03:38 PM
Cats on a ship probably wouldn't be pets per se, but working animals keeping down the inevitable rat population.

Jackmannii
02-25-2010, 06:44 PM
Are pets allowed on US naval ships?
Sailors Taking Women On Ships As Stowaways
Help me train my pig.

Worst sequential threads ever.

Rysdad
02-25-2010, 07:19 PM
They named him Tripod, which didn't take much imagination, admittedly.

Never having been to Viet Nam myself, I can only echo the statements of many Army 'Nam vets that it wasn't all that uncommon to have a dog names Tripod as the company/battery/regiment/whatever pet.

Three-legged dogs were not that uncommon, unfortunately.

t-bonham@scc.net
02-27-2010, 05:39 AM
I've read memoirs of a US Navy submarine captain in WWII Pacific where he reports that the crew adopted a dockside cat, and took it along on voyages of the submarine. Sort of unofficial, except that he & all the other officers knew about it, and basically allowed it to happen. I suppose in wartime, anything that improves the morale of your crew is acceptable. And a cat might do worthwhile duty catching mice on the ship.

Elendil's Heir
03-04-2010, 04:53 PM
Unclear as to whether or not her dog was actually aboard, but could be: http://www.aolnews.com/nation/article/cursing-female-navy-captain-holly-graf-booted-from-ship/19383341

Henryhoo
08-26-2011, 10:16 AM
I was on board a destroyer, USS DuPont DD941 and in June of 1980, as we left the Bethlehem Steel Shipyards in Hoboken N.J., Our CO allowed a local stray dog on board and became part of our crew. We named him Rags and he traveled with us to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba for refresher training and was on the ship more than a year later when I left the ship after a deployment in the Persian Gulf.

chappachula
08-26-2011, 01:12 PM
., Our CO allowed a local stray dog on board and became part of our crew. .
okay, now I just gotta ask the obvious question: who cleaned up after the dog?
Ya know, seeing as how a ship doesnt have neighbors with a nice grass lawn .....

postcards
08-26-2011, 02:31 PM
What about zombie pets?

Oldeb
08-26-2011, 02:52 PM
okay, now I just gotta ask the obvious question: who cleaned up after the dog?
Ya know, seeing as how a ship doesnt have neighbors with a nice grass lawn .....

It's the Navy, they probably didn't notice. (http://www.google.com/search?q=phantom+shitter+navy&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a#pq=phantom+shitter+navy&hl=en&cp=5&gs_id=z&xhr=t&q=navy+phantom+shitter&qe=bmF2eSBwaGFudG9tIHNoaXR0ZXI&qesig=enLMzSoTSrk6fgqPbilcjw&pkc=AFgZ2tmR6yv13CMfFbGyMJprUiFMFjcaI5f1_63IQc1kOIzUZpvUoq1GXXReG9vq7JHf9d4-jVr3dDFhHBL3gAT-g9hpbPjGyg&pf=p&sclient=psy&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US%3Aofficial&source=hp&pbx=1&oq=navy+phantom+shitter&aq=0j&aqi=g-j1&aql=&gs_sm=&gs_upl=&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=1350c3a2e903cb66&biw=1024&bih=600) :D

alphaboi867
08-26-2011, 06:32 PM
...However, "Enterprise" took place 200 years earlier as Earth's space fleet was being launched and the NX-01 was the first of her kind. It seems to me that first-contact protocols with alien races would call for strict quarantine procedures in effect so that animals like Porthos would not transmit any otherwise harmless Earth bacteria to native fauna and cause an ecological disaster...

Quarantine procedures? Most of the time Capt. Archer didn't even bother putting Porthos on a leash. And IIRC there was an episode were Porthos caused a diplomatic incident with a newly contacted race by urinating on a sacred tree.

Xema
08-26-2011, 07:54 PM
I was on board a destroyer, USS DuPont DD941 and in June of 1980, as we left the Bethlehem Steel Shipyards in Hoboken N.J...
Interesting - I was on that same ship, a few years before you.

obbn
08-26-2011, 08:12 PM
Quarantine procedures? Most of the time Capt. Archer didn't even bother putting Porthos on a leash. And IIRC there was an episode were Porthos caused a diplomatic incident with a newly contacted race by urinating on a sacred tree.

Man, you Star Treck People really crack me up. You guys actually discuss this stuff like it is real. No offense meant, just really makes me wonder.

Kobal2
08-26-2011, 08:25 PM
No, pets are not allowed and I have never heard of anyone ever actually being allowed to have a pet. When I was on a ship there was a guy who had a sugar glider as a pet. He had to get rid of it as they are not allowed.

That's a bit sad. And unfair - if the grunts can have artillery bears (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wojtek_%28soldier_bear%29), you'd think the navy boys could at least have a cool parrot or something.
Of course, the bear was enlisted. Maybe you could get away with it if your cockatoo can salute ?

dropzone
08-26-2011, 08:41 PM
The remarkable story of Unsinkable Sam (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unsinkable_Sam) - ship's cat on three vessels - Bismarck, Cossack and Ark Royal. He looked like my Bootsie!

Really, though, after presiding over the sinking of Bismarck, maybe he wasn't a jinx. But after Cossack they allowed him on another ship? Sailors, the most superstitious people on Earth?

Emphant
08-26-2011, 10:47 PM
A Captain of a US Navy ship at sea is pretty much as close as you can get to royalty in the country...so yes, I suppose he COULD have a pet if he wanted. That being said, while this may have happened in the past it's not something that happens anymore.

Of course, now that I said this, someone is going to have an exception.

Henryhoo
08-26-2011, 10:56 PM
okay, now I just gotta ask the obvious question: who cleaned up after the dog?
Ya know, seeing as how a ship doesnt have neighbors with a nice grass lawn .....

I have to admit I cannot remember who took care of Rags. It wasn't part of my duty.

t-bonham@scc.net
08-26-2011, 11:03 PM
I remember reading one or more stories of WWII US submarines where there was a pet* cat aboard. Basically done by crew members; the Captain officially was unaware of this 'stowaway'. But obviously, on a ship this small, he DID know -- just chose not to do anything about it.

* The term pet may not actually apply. By catching mice & other vermin, cats work for their keep, and have been on ships for centuries.

AK84
08-27-2011, 07:25 AM
Ships Cat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ship's_cat) has a long tradition.

psychonaut
08-27-2011, 07:38 AM
Ships Cat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ship's_cat) has a long tradition.Yes, this was mentioned, along with that link, on the day of the OP.

AK84
08-27-2011, 07:42 AM
Yes, this was mentioned, along with that link, on the day of the OP.

Carry on.

:smack: