Lifes a Beach

Unless you're a dog looking for a dog-friendly beach at which to cool off and cavort in the waves, chase seagulls and fetch driftwood.

Beaches that allow dogs are getting fewer and farther between and irresponsible owners are largely to blame. It only takes a handful -- or even one -- in any location to ruin it for the majority who either keep their dogs on leash and under control or off leash and under voice control, and who clean up after their dogs.

It's not too difficult to see how out of control dogs can spoil a day at the beach.

Even minor exhibitions of rudeness can be annoying. Imagine lying on the beach, suntan oil glistening, half asleep, relaxed after a horrible week at work, listening to your favorite chill out music . . . and then you're tromped on, tripped over and rolled across by a wet, sandy furball! You raise up, forgetting you've undone the back of your bathing suit top, just in time to get plowed by the bigger, sandier, wetter furball chasing the first one. Things keep getting better. The family two towels over is offended by your seminudity as well as the exclamations that fly out of your mouth as the second set of claws rakes across your back and the next thing you know, the beach patrol is there, standing over you, telling you to pack up and leave the beach quietly or you'll be handed over to
the local police for indecent exposure and public profanity. Meanwhile, you look around for the two dogs who brought on the incident and they're sitting quietly eating bites of hot dog with their family -- two towels over.

Don't forget that there are some people who are plain old afraid of dogs. It doesn't matter how big and gentle the dog is or how small and quiet. These folks are just terrified. You'd think that someone with that kind of phobia would choose a beach that was for humans only, but there are some who will go to a “dog beach” simply because it's closest to them or it has features they particularly like, or they may go there to try to desensitize themselves by being around dogs that aren't overtly trying to interact with them. Despite their fear, no matter how irrational it is to a dog person, they should be able to expect to have a peaceful day at the beach without undue stress or fright from being approached by a rambunctious stranger dog, and scared people are typically the ones who will make the effort to go to city council meetings and protest to have beaches closed to dogs because one dog owner on one day was careless or inattentive or didn't care enough to follow the rules of consideration and common sense.

Sometimes other dog owners bear the brunt of the inconsiderate oaf on the beach.

There are more and more dog beaches that are, in the interests of compromise converting from off leash to leashed only rules. Maybe not as much fun for your dog, playing frisbee or fetching driftwood sticks, but you can still have a big time, jogging down the beach together, chasing sticks in the surf while on an extendable leash or just meandering along in the surf. Leashed beaches can be more relaxing than off leash ones, until that one owner who thinks the rules don't apply to him and his dogs comes down the beach with his dog who really isn't all that good around other dogs and you've got a potential dog fight on your hands. While, of course, you're within six feet of the one person on the beach who is afraid of dogs.

Remember, no one cares how many people follow the rules and play nice -- but everyone cares a great deal when one person flouts the rules and makes a nuisance of themselves -- or their dogs, and that's all it takes, sometimes, to make those signs sprout up all over the beach. You know, the ones that say “NO DOGS ALLOWED.”

Author's Bio: 

Brian is a writer for Pet Super Store: Come to our site to find all the pet doors, dog kennels, and dog training collars that you want and need.