The beach is a wonderful place to spend time with your dog, and most dogs love playing on the sand and in the water. However, be aware there can be hazards for your pet at the beach. Before you take your dog to the beach please keep in mind the following:
Before you visit a beach learn the rules for bringing a pet with you. Most dog-friendly beaches require dogs to remain on leash, sometimes even in the water. Some beaches allow dogs only during the off-season, or only during certain times of the day. Some beaches set aside a designated portion of the beach where dogs are allowed. Finally, some beaches are dedicated dog beaches where dogs are allowed off-leash.
Dogs will naturally start “dog paddling” when they find themselves in water, but that doesn’t mean that they can stay afloat for any length of time, that they like being in the water, or that they can safely swim. Make sure your dog doesn’t get overly tired, and be aware that puppies and older dogs tire more easily and seem less aware of their fatigue until it’s too late. Stay away from strong currents and areas with underwater debris that can entangle a dog.
Warm summer temperatures at the beach can pose a threat to a dog’s health. Make sure that your dog has a shady spot under a beach umbrella, tree or picnic bench. While you ensure your skin doesn’t get sun burnt, remember your pet. Dogs can burn too, especially if they have light skin and fur or short hair. Focus on the ears and nose. Take care of his/her hydration the same way as yours. Remember that the sand can be scorching on sensitive paws, so provide a blanket or towel for your dog’s comfort. Watch for signs of overheating in dogs, which include: excessive/rapid panting and drooling, coordination problems, vomiting and/or diarrhea, collapse. Heat stroke is a serious medical condition that requires immediate attention.
Salt water makes dogs sick – just like humans. And salt water can also damage your dog’s coat. Rinse dogs with fresh water after an ocean swim. And bring clean, fresh water for them to drink.
Be aware that all sorts of items can be partially or fully hidden in the sand. Broken glass, rocks, hooks, coral, and garbage can pose a danger to your dog.
The number one reason for previously dog friendly beaches to ban dogs is because of irresponsible dog owners who don’t scoop the poop. Please help keep these beaches dog friendly!
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