Is Southwold Beach dog friendly?

SOUTHWOLD is a beautiful seaside town along the coast of Suffolk and enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.

The town, nearly eight miles south of Lowestoft, has two beaches that provide plenty of fun and relaxation during the summer months – but can you take your dog there?

Is Southwold Beach dog friendly?

The shoreline in the town is split in two – Southwold Pier Beach running from Gun Hill to the pier in the north.

Meanwhile, the more popular Denes Beach covers the southern part before you reach the River Blyth.

Canine lovers will be happy to know that Southwold Denes Beach is dog friendly all year round.

But, the northern part – Southwold Pier Beach – has a ban on dogs from April 1 to September 30, meaning you will not allowed to take your four-legged friends on the sand at all.

Southwold Beach is beautiful place to visit on a summer's day - but you will have to be wary of the dog restrictions
Southwold Beach is beautiful place to visit on a summer’s day – but you will have to be wary of the dog restrictions

Can I be fined for taking my dog to Southwold Beach?

Dog owners will be completely free of fines when visiting the Southwold Denes Beach as canines are allowed there 365 days a year.

However, pet lovers will face a fixed penalty notice of £75 if they take their canines to the Southwold Pier Beach between April and September.

And matters can get worse if you fail to pay the fine on time as you could face legal action and be taken to court.

You are able to appeal the fine, but you must have a reasonable excuse for taking your pet to the exclusion area during the summer months.

Fancy spending time with your dog at the Southwold beaches? Stay at the pet-friendly The Sail Loft hotel for only £166 a night

Why are dogs banned from going onto beaches?

The main reason for not allowing dogs on to beaches at certain times is for health and safety purposes.

Although most owners will clean up after their pets when they are out, some fail to pick up their dog’s poo. 

Due to a dog’s diet being largely meat-based, leaving their faeces on the beach runs the risk of humans contracting toxocariasis – or zoonosis. 

And during the busy months, this becomes even more dangerous – especially for children – with potential problems including blindness and breathing difficulties.

Things to consider when taking your dog to the beach

Dogs love a nice trip to the seaside, just like their human companions. 

But there are a number of rules and tips to consider when heading to the beach.

These include: 

  • Check with beach management to see if dogs are allowed
  • Take poo bags to clear up their mess
  • Bring a lead – dogs have to be on a leash on some beaches at all times
  • Avoid the big crowds
  • Consider some people may not like dogs
  • Take plenty of fresh water and a bowl for your dog
  • Take a first aid kit in case your dog becomes injured
  • Check for local vets in case of emergency
  • Make sure your dog is wearing their collar and ID tag
  • If they are wear a GPS tracker, make sure it is fully charged
  • Take spare towels to dry them
  • Keep an eye on your dog at all times

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