For any hooman wondering about safety tips for taking dogs to the beach, here are a few and a packing list too!
You keep hearing your hooman talk about the “beech” and can’t help but want to go too, it sounds like fun! They start packing up their things and you give the biggest puppy dog eyes you’ve ever given in the hope that they’ll notice. It sounds like they have…your hooman has started asking, “…Is it possible to bring my dog to the beach? It can’t be that easy. Are there safety tips for taking dogs to the beach that I should be aware of?…I should Google this.”
That’s where this article comes in. There is endless information on the internet and we’re here to simplify it for you, canine to canine. In this article we’ll cover what hoomans should to take to the beach with a dog, how hoomans can keep a dog safe in the water and on the beach.
First, Find A Beach
The first question you should be asking yourself is: “What beaches allow dogs?” It’s important to note that not every beach is dog-friendly, so be sure your hooman does their research before heading out. There are some websites that can help, such as Pet Friendly Travel and Bring Fido, but it never hurts to double check!
Dog Beach Packing List:
Whether your hooman is taking you to the beach for the first time or the umpteenth time, it’s still all too easy to forget what to pack. Instead of your hooman wasting precious beach time wondering what to bring to the beach with a dog, we’ve provided this handy dog beach packing list just for them:
1. Food, treats, and water
Your hooman packs little goodies when they head to the beach and it’s no different for dogs. As you swim around and play in the sand, you’re going to need nourishment and water. Be sure your hooman packs plenty of water and snacks like kibble, Bully Sticks, or small dog treats that will help keep you going.
2. Dog waste bags
Dog-friendly beaches aren’t as common as regular beaches and everyone needs to do their part to keep it clean. Imagine if every dog owner that went thought, “Well…it’s just this one little mistake, it’ll be fine”, the ratio of sand to waste would soon be horribly out of proportion!
If your hooman does happen to forget, tell them to not be shy about reaching out to fellow dog owners if they have a spare bag. No one wants to have poop everywhere.
3. Extra leashes
Depending on the beach, some allow dogs to roam free and others still require dogs to be on a leash. If you end up visiting one that requires leashes, a variety of leash lengths will only help. It also doesn’t hurt to have a few backups just in case, things we need have a habit of getting lost in the sand.
4. Shade and sunscreen
Did you know that dogs can get sunburned too? It’s true! Just how hoomans apply sunblock or shade with a huge umbrella, dogs also needs sunblock and shade. Dogs with white fur or short hair are especially prone to damage from the sun, so make sure your hooman is prepared for that when you head out into the sun.
Depending on the planned activities, your hooman may need to bring as many as 5 towels. One towel for each of you to lay on and one towel for each of you to dry off with after spending time in the water. That fifth towel should be a thin, microfiber towel that your hooman can moisten to take the sand off of a dog’s muzzle and away from the eyes. That last towel is helpful for dogs like me that like to dig in the sand but don’t enjoy the feeling of sand on their muzzle.
This seems like a given for the dog that loves their toy, but don’t forget that other dogs might love those toys too! Be prepared to possibly make some new canine friends if your hooman starts squeaking that toy.
If you’re going to be playing fetch in the water, make sure it’s one that floats and that you can see (ex: Chuckit! Bumper).
*Make sure vaccinations are up to date*
I’m not suggesting that all hoomans pack up their dog’s vaccinations every time they head to the beach, but it’s good to check before going on an outing.
General Beach Safety Tips For Dogs
Once you’re at the beach, it’s all fun and games, right? We certainly hope so! To give you the best beach day ever, hoomans should keep in mind these safety tips for dogs once you’re actually on the beach:
1. Protect their paws
It can be easy for hoomans to forget this since they tend to wear their sandals in the sand. The general rule of thumb is that if it’s too hot for hoomans, it’s too hot for dogs. My hooman likes to use paw wax on me when the sand is too hot (or even just walks on hot days!). She tried dog booties once and I didn’t really like them, but you might.
2. Don’t overexercise
It can be easy to lose track of how long you’ve been playing fetch, but remember that running on sand is much more exhausting than running on grass. This also goes for aquatic activity. I personally love to play fetch in the water and would go on for hours if my hooman would let me, but it’s probably best that she doesn’t. Even the strongest swimmers get tired! Be sure to keep track of how long you’ve been playing and take breaks.
3. Rinse off after playing
Whether you love digging in the sand or staying in the water all day, be sure to rinse off at the end of the day. A dog’s coat is sensitive and beach water or sand isn’t the best thing for it. Before heading in the car, be sure your hooman rinses your coat out with fresh water. This is where bringing plenty of water and tons of towels comes in handy.
4. Always supervise your dog
Even the best trained dog can get distracted by someone else’s toy or a shiny object in the distance. It’s always a “better safe than sorry” situation to have your hooman keep an eye on you before you end up getting too far out in the water or start running past your designated beach area.
Water Safety Tips For Dogs
What beach day would be complete without playing in the water? In the hopes of having the best time splashing and swimming about, have your hooman keep these tips in mind:
1. Don’t assume your dog can swim
It’s seems like a given for hoomans, “Of course my dog can swim!”. If this a hooman’s first time taking their puppy to the beach, they may not know that that’s not necessarily the case. Hoomans should be aware that throwing a puppy or dog into the water and assuming they’ll learn is not the way to teach a dog to swim.
If this is your first time to the dog beach, consider having your hooman bring you a life vest if you’re not sure wether you’re a strong swimmer or if you just want to be extra careful. If it turns out that you’re a dog that doesn’t like the water, your hooman shouldn’t try to force you in.
2. Don’t let them drink the water
It can be tempting to take a quick sip of water while you’re out, after all water is water. I’m here to let you know that that’s not the case! Not only is the water salty, but you can never be sure that the water won’t be harmful if ingested. This is where having plenty of water comes in handy, so that hoomans can keep their dog hydrated throughout the day.
3. Be aware of strong tides
This is where the “Don’t overexercise” tip comes into play. Even the strongest swimmers get tired and tides can be dangerous. Hoomans should keep track of their dog’s energy level and be mindful of how far out they’re playing fetch.
4. Keep an eye on them at all times
Even if you’ve been to beach more times than you can count with your hooman, it’s still recommended that they keep an eye on you at all times in the water. We believe you when you say that you’re the dog equivalent of an Olympic swimmer, but even they have people watching them as they train. Chances are that your hooman is already doing this (because who can keep their eyes off you, really?), but a friendly reminder never hurts!
Remember: All data, information, and advice reflect the views of the authors alone and in no way reflect those of Pawstruck.com. Everything is provided on an as-is basis and every situation is different. Always consult a veterinarian with safety and health-related questions.