“Seriously, this is ridiculous”: Dog owner slams BC Ferries over pet area problems

A BC man is not holding back his thoughts on the amenities offered by BC Ferries to pet owners on board the vessels.

In a series of videos, TikTok user Old Man Crowe lashes out after his golden retriever needed some water and the taps connected to the dog area were dry.

In the video, you can read that one of the taps was not safe for drinking, and the second tap, which had scribbled-on messaging that it was potable, seemed a bit worse for wear, and no water dripped out.

Captioning the video, “@BC Ferries seriously, this is ridiculous,” you can see the dog lying on the ground as he narrates the issue and suggests that the company “sucks.”

@oldmancrowe @BC Ferries seriously, this is ridiculous. #bcferries #dungeon #goldenretriever #pet #area #disgusting #dobetter ♬ original sound – Old Man Crowe

Cole Landry, the person behind the account, told Daily Hive that he’s a frequent passenger between the Island and the Mainland and often travels with his dog, Gemini. There have been just so many issues over the last year or so that prompted him to take his complaints to social media.

“I haven’t bothered reaching out to them directly. Trying to speak to BC Ferries about their [issues] feels a lot like my words are falling on deaf ears,” Landry said.

In the comments, people were quick to condemn the BC Ferries’ passenger for not packing water on the trip.

“Bring your own water dude. If you are going to be a pet owner, don’t put your duties on others,” one person wrote on the video, which now has more than 40,000 views.

@oldmancrowe Replying to @Noreligion stating the”obvious” doesn’t make you special, especially when you’re wrong. ##bcferries##vancouver##sailing##nanaimo##dobetter@@BC Ferries ♬ original sound – Old Man Crowe

Landry, a musician, was on the route between Duke Point and Tswaassen last month when he took the video. Since then, he’s released reaction videos to address the “trolls.”

He says he did leave his dog to get water, and Gemini is well taken care of, and people missed the point.

But some other pet owners sympathized and suggested that BC Ferries should do better, especially for walk-on passengers who might not have space to bring water for their pets and, if they are travelling solo, aren’t able to bring their pets up to the passenger decks to get water.

BC Ferries dog

Gemini posing on the beach. (Submitted)

Others share their concerns

“If you look in the comment section of the video, you’ll find plenty of people sharing other miserable experiences with the pet area,” he told Daily Hive.

“I took my dog for the first time in about 8 years & was disappointed by the pet area. I thought there was even relief area, instead it was just incase of an oopsie. Went back to the car fast,” one person commented.

“BC Ferries is my enemy. as someone who takes her dog back and forth 4x/month I’ve learned to take my own water. But the average person would have no idea. So out of touch with the needs of commuters,” another person remarked.

We reached out to BC Ferries to ask what dog owners are supposed to do, and they told us if dog owners notice something is missing, like water, they should tell the crew.

“Passengers travelling with pets can utilize designated pet areas on the majority of our vessels. These areas are equipped with garbage bins, waste bags and water. If there is ever an issue with accessing water or any other amenities while onboard, passengers should notify a crew member,” said Colin Zak, a senior communications advisor with BC Ferries.

We checked it out for ourselves

Daily Hive checked out one of the vessels on Tuesday to see what the pet area was like. We found that the Langdale to Horseshoe Bay route did have three pet areas, including some outdoor space. However, only one of them had water bowls provided, and we couldn’t spot any taps.

Pet area BC Ferries

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

BC Ferries pet area

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

While this vessel has more options than Landry’s usual boat, it also did have some poop bags that we could find. It also seemed that in order to get water, you’d have to either ask or bring your own.

BC Ferries pet area

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

Landry says that while working water taps is one thing, just the overall experience needs to be improved.

“They started doing something helpful by allowing pets onto the upper deck on the Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route, but even then, you’re stuck in one small area of the upper deck, and it’s freezing cold any time other than the summertime,” he told Daily Hive.

Stairs BC ferry deck

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

BC Ferries says it is aware and is trying to make the experience as “comfortable as possible.” They encourage customers to provide feedback, but they know there’s more to be done to roll out changes on more vessels.

“In Fall 2022, BC Ferries began piloting outdoor pet areas on the upper outer decks of select vessels. Based on the positive response we’ve received, work is underway to expand pet areas and identify more ways to prioritize comfort for pets and their owners on more of our vessels,” Zak added.

Sundeck BC Ferries

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

BC ferries dog area

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

BC ferries dog area

April 9, 2024. (Laurenne Karmel/Daily Hive)

What do you think of the conditions in the pet area on BC Ferries? Let us know in the comments below.