Login
Password

Forgot your password?

Visiting a Dog Beach

By Edited Aug 21, 2016 0 0

The Huntington Beach Dog Beach

What’s a Dog Beach?
Like a dog park, a dog beach is an area designated for canines to enjoy off-leash play.  Unlike a traditional leash-free park, most dog beaches aren’t fenced.  Some are demarcated by cones or pylons, others by signage, and a few by geographic features.  In any case, it will represent only a small part of a larger public beach, and responsible owners will do their best to keep their pups within the designated area, though this usually isn't difficult. 

A few dog beaches are on-leash only, essentially just a stretch of sand where owners are allowed to walk their companions at water's edge.  On-leash beaches may be a good choice for dogs new to the ocean, allowing them to acclimate to the sights, sounds, smells and scale of the sea, and giving owners more control than at an off-leash park.

Dogs at a Dog Beach

Where Are Dog Beaches?
Dog beaches may be found both by the ocean and at lakes; which you’ll be able to visit will depend largely on where you live, and the features you’re looking for.  An internet search for “dog beach near” and your town is one easy way to see what is available locally.  Time and distance permitting, you may wish to visit the beach first without your pup to learn what it’s like, parking availability (typically it will be metered -- it is the beach, after all!), how easy it is to reach, and the general layout of the off-leash area.

What Should We Bring?
Dog beaches rarely provide water, and bag dispensers are often empty.  A smart owner’s beach tote will include at least the following:

⦁    Water & Bowl
⦁    Poop Bags
⦁    Leash (for getting to and from the designated off-leash area)
⦁    Towels
⦁    Shade (especially on hot days, or if you plan on being at the beach for more than an hour)

This, of course, is in addition to anything you’ll want to bring for your own enjoyment of the day!

What Is There To Do?
Chances are your dog falls into one or two of these three categories: Runner, Romper, or Retriever.  A dog beach is ideal for any of these types, especially on weekends during warmer months, when the beach offers plenty of playmates.  Running dogs will do best just along the surf line, where the sand is firmest and they can reach top speeds. Rompers will have plenty of dogs to play with, while retrievers can either chase balls thrown on land, or swim out into the surf to fetch from the ocean.  Just be aware that whatever activity your dog is interested in, several other will likely join in the fun, as well.

Dogs in the Ocean

 

When's the Best Time to Go?
Generally speaking, there isn’t a wrong time to visit.  Summer months are the obvious choice because, after all, that’s beach season, and the water’s warmer than at other times of year.  Off-season visits are recommended, as well, though; fewer people means fewer distractions, and whether Fido’s interests are in chasing a ball, playing with a new best bud, or playing with you.  Naturally, you’ll want to consider both your and your dog’s comfort, and if the water’s too cold, plan on sticking to sand activities only.

 

Are There Any Risks?
Dog beaches are great fun, but not without some risks.  As at any off-leash park, doggy disagreements can be harder to reign in.  Dogs new to the beach may be so overjoyed at the expanse of land that they take off running seemingly with no intention of coming back!  Swimmers will have a blast chasing toys thrown into the water, but be aware of rough waters or seasonal rip-currents, as well as off-season colder water temperatures; these risks can be reduced by flotation vests).  All dog beaches have one thing in common: sand, and lots of it.  Many dogs will, at some point during a visit, get sand inadvertently kicked in their faces, but this is rarely more than a minor irritation, the offending grains being discharged in a day or two.  Just like people, dogs' exposed skin (such as on noses) can suffer sunburn, so consider sunblock designed for dogs to guard against this. Regular beach-goers may also want to consider eye protection for their pooch, which can protect against both UV radiation and the change of sand in the eyes.

 

 

Many dogs will enjoy occasionally sampling seawater.  Most just get a taste and are fine, but a few may overindulge and either vomit at the beach, or back at home (or on the way back home!).  Also, excessive seawater ingestion can lead to diarrhea, so either discourage drinking from the ocean, or be prepared to deal with the runny consequences. Providing plenty of fresh water will mitigate this problem.

 

Finally, particularly active and rambunctious dogs, especially those that enjoy wrestling, have a higher risk of ligament damage at beaches than traditional dog parks.  A paw, sinking into sand, becomes an anchor point and if the dog pivots on that leg with a paw firmly planted in the sand, there is the possibility of tearing the Cranial Cruciate Ligament (the canine equivalent of a human’s ACL).  This injury is painful for the dog, and expensive for the owner.

 

 

While all of these risks are real, realize that on a percentage basis, any individual dog is unlikely to suffer from most, or indeed, any of them.  Knowing your pet and your pet’s limitations, and plan your visit accordingly, will go a long way to eliminating most of them, and ensure a fun and memorable outing for everyone!

 

Happy Gracie

When's the Best Time to Go?

Generally speaking, there isn’t a wrong time to visit.  Summer months are the obvious choice because, after all, that’s beach season, and the water’s warmer than at other times of year.  Off-season visits are recommended, as well, though; fewer people means fewer distractions, and whether Fido’s interests are in chasing a ball, playing with a new best bud, or playing with you.  Naturally, you’ll want to consider both your and your dog’s comfort, and if the water’s too cold, plan on sticking to sand activities only.

 

Are There Any Risks?

Dog beaches are great fun, but not without some risks.  As at any off-leash park, doggy disagreements can be harder to reign in.  Dogs new to the beach may be so overjoyed at the expanse of land that they take off running seemingly with no intention of coming back!  Swimmers will have a blast chasing toys thrown into the water, but be aware of rough waters or seasonal rip-currents, as well as off-season colder water temperatures; these risks can be reduced by flotation vests).  All dog beaches have one thing in common: sand, and lots of it.  Many dogs will, at some point during a visit, get sand inadvertently kicked in their faces, but this is rarely more than a minor irritation, the offending grains being discharged in a day or two.  Just like people, dogs' exposed skin (such as on noses) can suffer sunburn, so consider sunblock designed for dogs to guard against this. Regular beach-goers may also want to consider eye protection for their pooch, which can protect against both UV radiation and the change of sand in the eyes.

 

Many dogs will enjoy occasionally sampling seawater.  Most just get a taste and are fine, but a few may overindulge and either vomit at the beach, or back at home (or on the way back home!).  Also, excessive seawater ingestion can lead to diarrhea, so either discourage drinking from the ocean, or be prepared to deal with the runny consequences. Providing plenty of fresh water will mitigate this problem.

 

Finally, particularly active and rambunctious dogs, especially those that enjoy wrestling, have a higher risk of ligament damage at beaches than traditional dog parks.  A paw, sinking into sand, becomes an anchor point and if the dog pivots on that leg with a paw firmly planted in the sand, there is the possibility of tearing the Cranial Cruciate Ligament (the canine equivalent of a human’s ACL).  This injury is painful for the dog, and expensive for the owner.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Comments

Add a new comment - No HTML
You must be logged in and verified to post a comment. Please log in or sign up to comment.

Explore InfoBarrel

Auto Business & Money Entertainment Environment Health History Home & Garden InfoBarrel University Lifestyle Sports Technology Travel & Places
© Copyright 2008 - 2016 by Hinzie Media Inc. Terms of Service Privacy Policy XML Sitemap

Follow IB Pets & Animals