If you’re planning to bring your pet to the beach this summer, it’s important to keep these safety tips for dogs at the beach in mind.
Bring lots of fresh water
Dogs need lots of water, especially after long swims and beach walks on hot summer days. Always plan to bring more water than you think you’ll need.
Don’t let your dog drink salt water, which will just make them even thirstier.
Not to mention the water contains seal feces (yuck! gross, but it’s true.)
plan for some shade
Plan to bring an umbrella or other means of shade. It’s hot out there in the sun!
Have your dogs take frequent breaks when needed, and avoid over-activity on really hot days. A good long nap in the shade is a great way to spend a hot day.
Cape cod beaches often have strong undertows and currents. Make sure your dog is a strong swimmer before letting them crash the surf for the first time.
Dogs can tire on hot days, so it’s best to keep them close to shore when you notice signs of fatigue .Doggie life jackets are helpful for weak swimmers, and a requirement if your dog is out in a boat.
Another compelling reason to keep them close to shore:
don’t get bitten, part 1: watch out for sharks
Every year more and more juvenile great white sharks cruise the shoreline of the cape looking for an easy meal. They’ll race in within a few feet of the beach to pick off a careless seal.
Never let your dog swim in the ocean with an open wound. sharks can smell just one drop of blood to hone in on their next meal.
Keep that in mind before chucking a tennis ball far into the ocean for your dog to fetch. Even the strongest of canine swimmers can’t outswim row after row of serrated teeth.
don’t get bitten, part 2: ticks
Cape cod is loaded with ticks. Grassy dunes and beaches are especially dangerous, simply brushing by beach grass may will often leave you with a hungry visitor attached to your leg.
Always check yourself and your pet closely for ticks after you leave the beach, and each night before bedtime. Stay up to date on tick prevention treatments too. They’re everywhere!
Some dogs with short hair or bald spots will need to use dog sunscreen to keep from getting sunburn. Remember that time you had a blistering sunburn so bad that your skin peeled? Your dog shouldn’t have to have that same memory.
Watch out for beach trash
Sadly many of the cape’s beaches are littered with debris. Make sure your dog doesn’t find anything it might choke on. This includes bones of filleted fish and grilled meats, clumps of seaweed which contain crab shells or fishing lures, and the random trash that previous visitors have left behind.
If your dog’s breed has a proclivity to always sniff out a bite to eat you need to keep an extra close eye out.
Be a nice citizen and pick up any garbage nearby. This will help ensure our cape cod beaches stay safe and beautiful for dogs and humans alike.