Hello, wonderful DailyBaker friends, my name is Jillian. I just finished graduate school in New York City and I’m writing to you from Nantucket Island where my girlfriend and I now live with our new Cavapoo puppy, Paddington.
Nantucket is a beautiful place to call home. We love surfing and going to the beach and I couldn’t think of a better way to introduce myself and Paddington to The DailyBarker community than with a few helpful tips for all of us to remember when we hit the beach with our furry friends this summer season.
If it’s an early morning ball chase on the beach before work or an all day weekend adventure, we’ve taken our puppy to the beach numerous times and all this sunshine has me thinking about beach safety for pup-families. Technically, the first day of summer arrives with the Summer Solstice (Friday, June 21st) but beach days have already started!
Keep in mind, Paddington was born on February 3rd, 2019 (Super Bowl Sunday, go Pats!) She’s still very much a curious puppy. She has a turbo amount of excitement for smelling, eating, and exploring. I’m sure I’m not alone to report that she, like oh so many dogs, loves SAND.
My sister, Paddington’s Aunty, is a Veterinarian at our local veterinary hospital on the island (Offshore Animal Hospital of Nantucket). I know, how lucky are we?
Last week at a family barbecue I was able to get a few tips from my sis, Dr. Fraker, about things to watch out for on our beach adventures and I couldn’t wait to share them with you:
- Have plenty of fresh water
- Watch sand intake
- Be careful of the seaweed Buffett
“If dogs drink too much sea water or eat too much sand, you may be faced with salt toxicity or sand impaction – if vomiting or diarrhea occurs after a day at the beach, it could be sand impaction — (they ate too much sand and it’s blocking their GI track) — Rocks and dead sea creatures can also be to blame causing gastrointestinal distress.”
Be careful of those sandy tennis balls your dog loves to chase. I rolled my eyes when my sister told me to watch out for sandy tennis balls. We are talking about a dog here, and mine especially loves to chase the ball. However, she reassured me, that she’s not the fun police and she’s NOT saying to take away the ball from your dog. She’s just offering the preventative reminder that it doesn’t hurt to rinse the tennis ball off with fresh water every now and then. Okay, I can handle that.
Don’t forget to have your pup take a break under that shady umbrella — heat stroke can be a real problem, plus it’s a good time to take those great pics for the ‘gram. Your dog, if anything like mine, is going to eat things at the beach; that’s life, just make sure to keep an eye on them. When in doubt, give your local vet a shout.
When the water warms up on the East Coast I’m hopeful to teach Paddington to surf with me this summer and can’t wait to share our progress along the way.
With safety in mind, I’m excited to test out a few dog life jackets this summer when Paddington starts surfing. Has anyone had great success with a specific brand? If so, please drop us a line, I’d love to hear from you.
For now, you can find us on Nantucket enjoying beach walks and playing in the waves close to shore.
Have any doggie beach tips? Tell us in the comments!
Jillian is a surfer, writer and teacher. She’s an island girl, living on Nantucket with her girlfriend Kellie and their Cavapoo puppy, Paddington. Jillian has her MFA in creative writing from The New School in New York City.