Taking your dog to a pet friendly beach can be a highlight of the summer for both of you. Spending some time in the water and on the sand can be a much different experience than what he is used to. Keeping some tips in mind can make sure he enjoys the outing as much as you do.
Some beaches allow dogs to roam around without being on a leash while others require it. Knowing the laws beforehand can prevent you from getting any fines. In addition, for beaches where dogs don’t have to be leashed, you can determine if you are comfortable with your dog being around other dogs running free.
Leave the Kids at Home
If you have young children, it can be difficult to keep a very close eye on them and on the dog, especially if it is your dog’s first visit to the beach. Having to worry about both at the same time in a strange environment can be stressful to say the least. If you would like to bring both kids and pets, make sure to bring another adult that can help you.
Have Seating Prepared
When you have a soggy, sand covered dog the last thing you want to do is fumble around with the seating in your car to get the towels situated while he’s shaking wet dog water all over you. When you first take him out of the car, put the towels down so when he gets back to the car, he can get right in with no problem. Make sure to also leave a couple of additional towels to use to wipe him down before he jumps in.
Always Stay With Your Dog
You should never let your dog scamper off unattended. Whether he is in the water or on the shore, make sure he stays close to you or that you are within very close proximity to him. With other strange dogs running around, it is better to be safe than sorry.
Bring Separate Leashes
Sand can get stuck in the metal clasps of the leash and, after awhile, prevent it from working properly. Also, the saltwater can damage some types of leashes, especially leather. Purchase an inexpensive, but good quality leash that you won’t care if it has to get replaced.
The water and waves can be intimidating to some dogs; the younger they are when you introduce them to the water the better so they can get acclimated. Be patient and don’t scold your dog if he doesn’t immediately want to jump in and paddle away. The first few times you take him into the water, keep him on a leash even on a beach that doesn’t require them. Find out what works for him. Some dogs want their owners right next to them at all times; others are more comfortable being on or off a leash while they are in the water. Testing out different strategies that you both feel comfortable with can make it a more enjoyable experience.
The saltwater and sun is going to make your dog extra thirsty. Make sure to keep him extra hydrated by bringing lots of fresh water for him to drink. If you prefer, bring a small dog water bowl that he can use.
Your dog may be inclined to chew on pieces of drift wood. The sharp pieces can hurt his gums and the inside of his mouth; he can also ingest them. Instead, bring some toys that he can use only when he goes to the beach, such as solid rubber toys that no sand can get into.
Chances are you don’t leave your food garbage lying around the beach so you shouldn’t leave your dog’s droppings either. Make sure to have several plastic bags with you in case he goes to the bathroom more than once. Surprisingly, some beaches that allow dogs may still be lacking in a sufficient amount of garbage cans in close proximity.
Make sure to keep an eye on your dog for when he starts to get too tired or warm so you can take him home. A day at the beach can be a fun day out for both of you. He can scamper about, make some new friends, get some exercise and enjoy some time in the sun. The only thing better is that when he gets home, he will get tons of sleep