The Best Pet-Friendly Beaches in the United States

It’s no secret that Americans love their pets. Around 44% of all households in the United States own a dog, and 35% own a car, according to the ASPCA. Americans also spend a lot on travel. It’s estimated we spent $814 billion on travel in 2015. With warmer weather moving in, millions of people will be looking to head to the beach for a vacation. But can your pet come too? We wanted to take a look at some of the beaches across the country that allow pets and came up with ten of the best.

Pet Friendly Beaches

While we don’t have a specific ranking for each one, these are places that both you and your furry companion can go. For our process, we asked locals and vacationers from across the country for their favorite spots. Then we took a number of factors into consideration, such as leash laws, what times of year pets are allowed, and having a space just for pets. These are the ten that made our final list (in alphabetical order).

Del Mar Beach

Located outside San Diego, the north end of the beach has been affectionately named ‘Dog Beach’ by dog owners. For most of the year, dogs are allowed off-leash. Locals say it’s a great place for pups to frolic in the ocean.

Double Bluff Beach – Whidbey Island

For many, the south Whidbey Islands are one of the best kept secrets. The islands are near Seattle and offer beach access. There is also an off-leash play park just for dogs.

Fort De Soto Park

The beaches in the Tampa and St. Petersburg area along the Gulf of Mexico are usually rated as some of the best in the world. Luckily, for pet owners, there’s a pet-friendly option if you’re headed that way. Locals say most pet owners are responsible and respectful. There’s a dog beach and a separate fenced play area.

Jekyll Island

Jekyll Island is a top vacation destination for many in Georgia. There are plenty of pet-friendly hotels to go along with the pet-friendly beaches. Dogs are required to be leashed, but there is plenty of room to roam.

Nags Head

North Carolina’s Outer Banks have always been known as a very pet-friendly destination. Locals say Nags Head is one of the better spots to bring your dogs. There are leash laws, but it is still a very welcoming place for pets.

Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach came up over and over again when asking locals about their go-to spot. Locals commented on the great water access. As one person put it, “If your dog loves water, he will be in heaven.”

Rosie’s Dog Beach

Rosie’s Dog Beach is the only off-leash beach area for dogs in LA County. The waterfront park is around 3 acres in size. Many vacationers said Rosie’s exceeded their expectations.

Topsail Beach

One of the best features about Topsail Beach is that dogs are allowed off-leash for part of the year. It’s one of the few beaches in Wilmington, N.C. area that allow pets to run free. Pet owners say it’s a great place for a day trip with your companion.

Warren Dunes State Park

Warren Dunes State Park stood out due to its pet-friendly section on the north end. Dogs are required to be on leashes but they are allowed in the water. As an added bonus, there are trails and campgrounds to use if you’re done having fun in the sun.

Wildwood Dog Beach

Wildwood became an official dog beach in 2014 and is open year round. However, there are some big changes coming this summer. The beach was closed temporarily, but local media reports that in June it will move to a bigger and better location just south of where it now stands.

The beach is always a top destination for a vacation when the weather turns warm. But for many families it can be tough to know what to do with a pet. So if you are looking to get away to the beach with your furry companion, keep these ten pet-friendly places in mind!


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