Is the salty sea breeze calling your name? There’s no better time than summer to pack up your sunglasses and swimsuit and hit the beach! But what about your canine companion? Can your pup partake of some sand, surf, and sun?
Absolutely! While many beaches aren’t pooch-friendly, there are some that cater to the four-legged crowd. You just need to be prepared and responsible.
If you’re planning to soak up some sun with your furry at the beach, pack the following supplies to ensure your pup is safe.
- A water bowl
- Bottled water
- Doggy waste bags
- An all-weather dog blanket or bed
- Sunscreen for you and your pet (only use dog-specific sunscreen)
- A first-aid kit
- Doggles (dog goggles) if it’s a windy day
- Waterproof toys
Here are seven dog-friendly beaches to check out.
Haulover Beach Park in Miami Beach, Fla.
A pristine stretch of sun-kissed sand hugging the crystal-clear Florida waters, Haulover Beach Park is a pooch’s paradise! You can let your dog off-leash to romp and roam every day.
There is also a Bark Park for both small and large dogs complete with drinking fountains, picnic tables, and shady trees. While your pet makes new pals, you can take in nautical views of the ocean.
Rules: Dogs can be off-leash between 8am and 4pm between lifeguard towers 2 and 3 only. The cost to get into the park is $2 while the beach is free.
Hours: The park is open from 8 am to sunset. However, dogs are only permitted on the beach from 8 am to 4 pm.
2. Carmel Beach in Carmel-by-the-Sea, Calif.
A gorgeous beach along California’s central coast, Carmel Beach is a seaside haven for both pups and their people! Nestled in Carmel-by-the-Sea, rated America’s top dog-friendly town, Carmel Beach permits well-behaved dogs to be off-leash. There are tons of nearby pet-friendly businesses that offer services like yappy hour and doggy turn downs, too!
Rules: All dogs must be up to date on vaccinations, have a current license, and respond to voice commands. Dogs must be on-leash at Carmel River Beach.
Hours: Park is open for day use.
Related: 15 Dog-Friendly Camping Sites and RV Parks
3. Wildwood Dog Park and Beach in Wildwood, NJ
Located in the quirky coastal town of Wildwood, NJ, Wildwood Dog Park and Beach offers plenty of fun for everyone! The fenced-in pup park features a huge 30-foot red fire hydrant that beckons your pet to pee on it. Dogs can freely roam within the dog park and are also permitted in the water, though they are required to be on a leash outside of the boundaries. Inside the dog run, you’ll find shady areas, challenging obstacle courses, and two separate areas for small and large breeds. After your dog successfully finds his way through the tunnel, he can relax and grab a drink at the water fountain.
Rules: Dogs must be on-leash outside of dog run.
Hours: Open every day from sunrise to sunset.
4. Huntington Dog Beach in Huntington, Calif.
Huntington Dog Beach offers 1.5 miles of shoreline for your dog to explore. The beach boasts picnic tables, drinking fountains for both dogs and humans, and doggy waste stations. All dogs must be leashed until they’re on the sand. As with any public area, owners must pick up after their pets. Female dogs in heat, puppies under the age of four months, and aggressive dogs are not permitted.
Rules: Dogs must be leashed until they get to the sand. You must pick up after your dog. You cannot leave a waste bag on the sand or cliffs.
Hours: 5 am – 10 pm, every day.
5. Surfside Beach in Nantucket, Mass.
There once was a man from Nantucket whose dog loved the ocean! If you’re ever in New England, be sure to check out Surfside Beach with your pup. This pet- and family-friend beach offers changing facilities, a restaurant, and on-duty lifeguards during the in-season.
If you’re planning an overnight trip, be sure to check out The Woof Cottage at Nantucket Boat Basin. This charming hotel offers doggy turn downs and dog beds. They even have a pet concierge named Bailey.
Rules: Dogs must be kept on-leash.
Hours: Dogs can be on the beach before 9am and after 5pm during the summer, and any time in the offseason.
Related: 7 National Parks You Can Actually Bring Your Dog
6. Montrose Dog Beach in Chicago
Not every dog beach needs to be on the ocean! Montrose Dog Beach is located along the shorelines of Lake Michigan. Open every day year round, it is one of the largest pet-friendly beaches in the area. All dogs must be over four months old and have a DFA tag issued by Chicago (cost $10 a year). Dogs can be off-leash in designated areas.
Rules: Dogs must be over four months of age and have a Chicago-issued DFA tag.
Hours: 6 am – 11 pm, every day.
7. Cannon Beach in Cannon Beach, Ore.
Cannon Beach is a super dog-friendly town and so is the beach. “Bring your human parent and play fetch with tasty pieces of driftwood on miles of sandy beach or spend the day hiking one of the local trails through towering trees and breathing in the lingering scent of raccoons, chipmunks, deer and elk,” the website reads.
Dogs can freely roam the beach as long as they obey voice commands and stay in sight. However, leashes are required at the Haystack Rock tide pools to keep your pet safe. Book a visit during Labor Day weekend to check out the Muttzanita Festival, an annual dog festival located just south of Cannon Beach.
Rules: Dogs can be off-leash as long as they follow voice commands and stay in sight. Dogs must be leashed near Haystack Rock tide pools.
Hours: Open daily.
Related: Our Picks for the Best Bay Area Dog-Friendly Beaches