Keep Your Dog Safe at the Beach

Ahoy, matey! It’s hot out here. The beach is right at the end of our street. The Atlantic Ocean, aqua-blue and brimming with sea life, greets us as we scamper down the dune. My bully mix, Mac, prefers excavating the wet sand for crabs while I dip in the calm water. I put Mac’s life vest on and coax him in until a gentle swell lifts his feet and he paddles back to shore.

The beach looks benign today, but hazards lurk. Here is my checklist for a safe, fun day at the beach with four-legged friends:

  • Bring sunscreen for both of you
    Apply it to any furless parts like that kissable spot just on top of his nose.
  • Give your pup a life vest
    If your dog is a water baby, he can surf the bubbling wave in like a star and keep from swallowing too much caustic salt water. Keep him afloat and looking stylish with a life vest made just for him.
  • Keep floating toys close to shore
    As much as your dog loves to swim, he will ignore fatigue and rip currents that can take him out too far.
  • Look for wildlife like a lot of fish or birds
    Birds eat fish. Bigger fish chase smaller fish. Sharks may be hot on their tails.
  • Have access to shade
    I bring an umbrella and a towel just for my dog. They can’t sweat to cool off like we do, so they get dangerously overheated in a hurry.
  • Provide fresh water for drinking
    Staying hydrated is essential for both of you. Give your pup cool, clean water wherever you are with a portable bowl.

With a little bit of planning and a Frisbee to fetch, spending a time at the beach with your pup will make the dog days of summer your favorite time of year. Surf lessons are optional.

What have I forgotten? Tell me what’s in your beach bag for your best friend.