Taking Your Pup To the Beach
Everything you need to know to have a fun and safe experience with your pup at the beach!
There's a few things to think about when making the decision to bring your dog to the beach with you. Some of our experienced beach-goers compiled this resource with pretty much everything you need to know.
Should I bring my dog to the beach?
Early morning or evening after the sun sets is the best time to bring your pup
The recommended times are before 10 am and at least after 4 pm, usually later
If you can’t walk in the sand without burning your feet, your pup should not go to the beach
Some beaches have times when dogs are not allowed on the beach between Memorial Day and Labor Day. You can check online or the beach will usually have a sign.
SDITs in vest are exempt from this in most states - see our Access Law Map for more info!
Is your SDIT allowed to go to the beach?
Your org may have certain restrictions like vaccination status or maturity level. Check with your point of contact before taking your pup to the beach!
What to bring:
We recommend getting a biothane or other waterproof leash and collar that will not tarnish and become dirty and damaged in the water
Life jacket (if necessary)
Booties and/or paw wax
Water bottle & water bowl
Some form of shade (umbrella)
A toy that floats
For post-beach bath time!
Mat/towel to lay on
($20 cooling mat from Target is a great option!)
Health & Safety:
Keep your eye out for off-leash dogs
For some reason lots of people have their dog off-leash at the beach and not all of them have great recall
If you have a dog that doesn't like to be approached by off-leash dogs, you may want to leave them home
Always bathe your pup after going to the beach!!
Sand can cause itchy skin and other skin problems, including sand mites
Don't let your pup eat too much sand
This may seem obvious but some of them really like it and you'll see it again later
Don't let your pup drink the salt water
This could dehydrate them and/or could make them sick
Opt to go to a beach on the bay instead where the water is fresher
Signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke in dogs:
Dry gums that become pale
Erratic or rapid pulse
Possibly rectal bleeding
What to do if you see these signs:
If you suspect your dog is overheating they need to see a vet
Seizure or cardiac arrest may occur if the dog overheats
Check your pup’s temperature
Put cool wet towels over the neck, under the armpits, and between the hind legs. Wetting the ear flaps and paw pads using cool water is also advisable. If you are outdoors, a stream or pond can be used to help cool down.
Never force water into the mouth as he may likely suck it out into his lungs. If your pooch refuses to drink, try wetting the tongue with the water instead. Do not offer ice to a dog experiencing heatstroke. If eaten, ice can cool the core body temperature too quickly, shocking the system.
As long as you take the proper precautions, going to the beach with your pup can be a fun and exciting experience for everyone!
But remember your pup can also always stay at home or with a sitter.