Friday, August 6, 2010

Taking Your Puppy to the Beach

I love going to the beach! The beach is a very fun place to take your puppy and with a little planning ahead, it can be a safe and happy trip for everyone. There are lots of dog friendly rental properties on the North Carolina coast. Many communities permit dogs on the beaches year-round, as long as you follow some simple "dogs at the beach" guidelines.
First, check with the community you are staying in before your trip, so you know exactly what the rules are for having dogs on their beaches and their leash laws. Most beaches require you to pick up your pet's waste and some even provide pet pick-up bags and receptacles to make it easy. When you travel with your pet, make sure they have their ID tags on their collar with your cell phone numbers listed. Here's Jet and me with our tags. It's also a good idea to bring your dog's vaccination history. There are some vets that will refuse to treat any dog without proof of their vaccinations, especially rabies. So, just in case something happens, Jenn keeps copies in the glove compartment of her car. It's also a good idea that you know before your trip where the closest veterinarian's office is located to your rental property.
I showed Jet the beach. She liked to sniff and explore all the cool beach shells and watch the seabirds. Make sure to watch your puppy on the beach, so they don't pick up anything that could make them sick. And try not to be out on the beach with your puppy during the hottest part of the day. We do most of our beach walking and exploring in the mornings and early evenings. The best part of beach walking is getting to cool off in the ocean. Jet followed me in and didn't hesitate one bit. Soon she was bouncing around in water like a crazy little seal.Remember that we can get overheated and it is important that we have shade and access to clean water after getting tired.Our rental house has a nice screened in front porch that we can sit on, relax, and dry off. Jet really liked hanging out on there. And, I got to supervise the comings and goings of the next door neighbor. We all agreed that our beach trip was just too short. But we had a super time!Wait! We left out one very important member of our family on this trip because sometimes traveling is very stressful on an older dog, like our Big Sandy. We have to be really careful that she doesn't fall and she gets easily confused in new places. This was the first trip that Jenn decided that is would be less stressful if Big Sandy stayed at Bed and Bone, her favorite boarding kennel. And wouldn't you know that it worked out just fine. Big Sandy didn't have to get stressed out on the long trip and she was very well cared for. She came home and passed out on her special bed.The only downside of the whole trip was having to get a bath as soon as we got home. Last thing to remember about your beachtrip is getting your puppy cleaned up. The sea water and sand can irritate skin and eyes, so be sure to wash your puppies up after your next beach adventure.

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