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10 Dog-Friendly Beaches in The U.S.

If you miss the beaches but don’t want to leave your dog at home, the good news is that you won’t have to decide between him and a well-deserved vacation! So hurry up, pack up your furry friend (not literally), grab your sunglasses, and hit the beach for a fantastic and enjoyable trip to the oceanside!

Many beaches in the United States have all kinds of special amenities to accommodate beachgoers who bring their BFFs (best furry friends) with them.

You will have the option to travel to the rugged shoreline of the West Coast and splash in the clear emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico, or throughout Florida and California, all the way to Maine along the East Coast.

No matter where your heart wants to go, there’s a great beach getaway waiting for you.

dog beach
Photo by Juice Verve from Shutterstock

Carmel Beach: Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

This quite iconic stretch of beach, located somewhere along California’s central coast and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, is also one of the most scenic places in the state to vacation with your pup.

It’s also commonly known as one of the most dog-friendly beaches in the United States. Your canine friend can easily run off-leash and play with the other dogs “on vacation.” However, it’s advised to keep an eye on them.

Dogs have to be on a leash when you hit the Scenic Road. You can also find plenty of “Mutt Mitts” (poop bags) at the top of every access point to the beach.

Plenty of restaurants will seat the dogs with owners on the patio or indoors and can come complete with dog-approved cuisine, such as steak tartare and grilled chicken.

Cisco Beach: Nantucket, Massachusetts

Cisco Beach is situated on the southern shore of Nantucket, which is one of the island’s top pet-friendly options out there. This beautiful beach is well-known for its soft sand and heavy surf.

It’s also quite popular with surfers and a younger crowd. There is also a lifeguard in season, but you won’t find any facilities, so make sure you pick a picnic lunch for you and your dog. You might also need to have your buddy licensed and on a leash.

Jupiter Dog Beach: Jupiter, Florida

You can bring your fur pal for all the canine fun in the world to Jupiter Beach in Florida. The beach is specifically designated for dogs. The 2.5-mile stretch of sand sits along southern Florida’s Atlantic coast in the Palm Beaches and runs all the way from beach marker No. 26 at Marcinski Road to marker No. 57 at the property line of Carlin Park.

There, dogs can run free on the beach. But it’s still advised to bring well-behaved, well-socialized, and obedient dogs that promptly respond to voice commands. And of course, they need to be leashed when walking from the car to the beach.

Willard Beach: South Portland, Maine

There are plenty of beaches in Maine where you can bring your four-legged friend throughout the year, including this 4-acre sandy stretch in South Portland.

It’s a beautiful neighborhood beach, only 4 miles from downtown Portland. Your dog will definitely enjoy frolicking in the gentle waves, especially in the morning and evening during extended beach hours from October through April.

During busier times in the summer, dogs are only allowed on the beach for a limited amount of time in the morning and at night. And as leash requirements might change every now and then, it’s highly recommended to check the latest restrictions before going.

Cannon Beach, Oregon

The small coastal city of Cannon Beach is yet another amazing dog-friendly vacation spot, so it’s quite hard to find a place where you can’t take your furry friend with you.

Dogs can freely roam the beach with their owners as long as they stay within sight and are obedient to your voice commands. The area also boasts plenty of hiking trails where pups can go and explore all sorts of animal scents from the local wildlife, like elk and even bears.

Kiptopeke State Park, Cape Charles, Virginia

Kiptopeke State Park is somewhere located around 45 miles north of Virginia Beach along the Chesapeake Bay on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. On-leash pets are highly welcomed on the south beach, where their humans can have fun along with their furry friends.

There are plenty of things you can do here, from swimming, boating, fishing, and even crabbing. Even more, the park boasts more than 5 miles of trails to hike with your furry friend.

You only need to make sure the leash isn’t longer than 6 feet, and also bear in mind that Kiptopeke State Park has a very small admission fee per car for entering and parking.

dog beach
Photo by Lucigerma from Shutterstock

Huntington Dog Beach: Huntington Beach, California

You and your pooch can have a well-deserved fun time in Huntington Dog Beach, California. You can play in the surf on the stretch of beach along Southern California’s Pacific Coast Highway, right between Seapoint Avenue and 21st Street. There’s a year-round dog-friendly beach in Huntington Beach, located around 40 miles south of Los Angeles.

Some of the best amenities in this area include a picnic area with tables, restroom facilities, and, of course, doggie waste bags. Dogs can also be leashed until you know exactly how they feel and how they will react to the sand and sea.

Brohard Beach: Venice, Florida

Brohard Beach and Paw Park is probably the only place in Sarasota County where you and your dog’s best friend can wander around on the beach and swim in the ocean.

The Paw Park has a beautiful, fenced area that will lead you to the designated beach. Once you get there, you will find plenty of amenities, such as picnic tables, benches, showers, and, of course, doggie water fountains. Dogs can run free off-leash, but it’s still advised to keep them under voice command.

Sarasota County also has plenty of leash-free dog parks, which also include 17th Street Paw Park, with many fenced areas for large and small dogs, drinking fountains, and eco-friendly supplies to clean up.

Island Beach State Park: Seaside Park, New Jersey

The 10-mile stretch of white sandy beach and coastal dunes can be found somewhere in between the Atlantic Ocean and Barnegat Bay along the Jersey Shore.

Moreover, Island Beach State Park is one of the last barrier beaches that are still undeveloped on the North Atlantic Coast. Humans and their doggie pals will highly appreciate the pristine shoreline and maritime forest because that’s where the largest osprey colony lives.

You can also gaze at other types of birds (if you spot them), like peregrine falcons and waterfowl.

Fort de Soto Park: St. Petersburg, Florida

There are plenty of beaches close to St. Petersburg and Clearwater Beach that will welcome you and your furry friend. They also boast exceptional amenities for your dog.

If you decide to visit Fort De Soto Park, which spreads across five small islands at the mouth of Tampa Bay, your four-legged friend can freely roam on a leash anywhere in the park except the main beaches.

Their space to run free and splash in the surf is on a specifically designated dog beach at Paw Playground, which has plenty of fenced-in areas for both small and large dogs.

And if you’re decided to visit one of these beaches with your furry friend, you might find this dog stake anchor quite helpful!

If you found this article useful, we also recommend checking out: Road Trip Essentials: 9 Important Things to Consider if You Want a Smooth Journey

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