Top 9 Best Dog-Friendly Beaches in New Jersey

pet friendly beaches nj

If you’re a dog lover looking for a beach getaway to take your pup on, then you’ll be pleased to know that there are plenty of dog-friendly beaches to choose from in New Jersey that will meet your needs. You’re in the right place to learn dog-friendly beaches in NJ.

New Jersey is home to some of the best dog-friendly beaches in the country. A number of fun and exciting beach activities can be enjoyed in the area, ranging from the tranquil setting of Stone Harbor Beach to the busy boardwalks along Longport Beach.

In case you are looking for a beach where you can take your pup for a swim or maybe a boardwalk where you can explore with your pup, there are plenty of great options to choose from in this area. ​​

As you can see, every place in the area offers a unique experience – from the 8th Avenue Dog Beach to the North Wildwood Dog Beach or Somers Point Dog Beach. These wide, sandy beaches, coupled with the multitude of amenities that they provide, will be sure to be a hit with both you and your pup when you visit these beaches. 

So put on your beach gear, grab your pup, and get ready to enjoy a fun-filled day of sun, sand, and waves with your buddy! Here are the top 10 dog-friendly beaches in New Jersey.

#1: 8th Avenue Dog Beach

8th avenue dog beach

Quick Hits

  • Only off-leash dog beach in the region
  • Well-maintained with many locations to run and play
  • Great views of the ocean
  • Local pet shop nearby!

General Information

First up on our list is the only beach that allows dogs to run off-leash—the 8th Avenue Dog Beach is the place to go! The adjoining boardwalk is also open to dogs on leash at any time during the less busy season, which normally runs from September 15th to May 15th, during which they are allowed to walk on a leash.

One thing to note about this beach haven for dog lovers is the hours. If you want to bring your dog to the beach in the summer months, you will only be able to do so between the hours of 6 pm and 8:30 am.

Located in Asbury Park, this beach has been rated as one of the best in the state for its abundant amenities and paw-some views. The beach is well-maintained, with plenty of areas to run and play. And with its picturesque views of the Atlantic Ocean, it’s the perfect spot for a doggy vacation. 

The area is also dog-friendly, with plenty of restaurants and stores that accept furry friends. And of course, there’s no shortage of things to do. From swimming to surfing, 8th Avenue Dog Beach has something for every pup. Plus, there are plenty of pet-friendly hotels nearby, so you and your pup can stay in comfort. 

You may also want to check out The Dawg Joint while you are in the area, as it is a local pet shop that offers grooming services, as well as natural pet toys and healthy food. So if you’re looking for a dog-friendly beach in New Jersey, 8th Avenue Dog Beach is the perfect place to be.

Each dog must be licensed, vaccinated, and supervised by its owner at all times. Furthermore, it is the owner’s responsibility to clean up after their pets, and if the dog becomes aggressive, it will be asked to leave the area. 

Inside Scoop

There are two ways to get into the property: either through the Deal Lake Drive entrance or through the northern entrance in Fisherman’s Parking Lot. It will not be possible for you to enter from the 8th Avenue entrance at the Boardwalk from inside the building.

#2: Fisherman's Cove Conservation Area

Quick Hits

  • Plenty of shady spots to relax in
  • Pet-friendly restaurants nearby
  • Fantastic views
  • Fishing is also allowed here

General Information

Fisherman’s Cove Conservation Area is one of the best dog-friendly beaches in New Jersey and it’s easy to see why. Not only is it a beautiful stretch of beach, but the rules are very friendly for pet owners.

Fisherman’s Cove also offers plenty of shady spots for you and your pup to relax in, as well as access to a great network of trails. And if you’re in need of refreshments, there are several pet-friendly restaurants nearby. 

Dogs are welcome in the eastern part of the region, where they can run over the sand, play in the water, stroll along the nature walks, and interact with other dogs. The vista is magnificent, especially at sunset, and the water is shallow.

But the best part about Fisherman’s Cove is the fantastic views. From the beach, you can catch glimpses of Barnegat Bay and the neighboring towns. It’s the perfect place to spend the day with your pup, with plenty of fresh air and sunshine, and plenty to explore. 

Fishing is allowed on this beach, so if you are hoping to catch a big one, make sure that you have the proper gear. Ensure that any loose hooks or tackle are cleaned up before going out, so that they don’t end up getting stuck in anyone’s paws.

Inside Scoop

There are no amenities available here—yes, that means that there aren’t any public restrooms—so bring water and snacks for both you and your pet, and don’t forget to clean up after yourselves when it’s time to leave.

#3: Wildwood Dog Park & Beach

wildwood dog park and beach

Quick Hits

  • Grassy picnic area available
  • Dog toys and water basins
  • Known as a very clean beach
  • Extra amenities available for dog owners

General Information

If you’re looking for the best dog-friendly beach in New Jersey, look no further than Wildwood Dog Park and Beach. This incredible beach is the perfect place to let your pup run around, splash in the waves, and make some furry new friends.

With plenty of open space to explore, your pup will be in puppy-heaven. And you’ll love it too, with plenty of grassy areas to picnic in and a great selection of restaurants nearby. 

This park, which is open all year and has two gated areas designated for dogs and their owners, comes complete with two frolicking dogs enjoying the waves and racing down the sand. Both the tiny and large dog cages in the park are filled with dog toys, water basins, and other obstacles to keep the dogs entertained.

So if you’re looking for a dog-friendly beach in New Jersey, make sure you check out Wildwood Dog Park and Beach. It’s the perfect place to take your pup for a day of fun in the sun!

Inside Scoop

Wildwood Dog Park and Beach is considered as one of the cleanest beaches in New Jersey, and its staff takes great care to ensure the safety of all guests. From the free beach towels to the complimentary treats for your pup, Wildwood offers plenty of extras to make your experience even better. 

#4: Gateway National Recreation Area

gateway national recreation area

Quick Hits

  • 27,000 acres available to romp!
  • Plenty of nature trails
  • Kayaking, fishing, birdwatching also available
  • Off-leash space available

General Information

Gateway National Recreation Area is one of the best dog-friendly beach in New Jersey! From Sandy Hook in Connecticut to Staten Island in New York, Gateway National Recreation Area is a whooping 27,000-acre paradise, and it offers an amazing beach experience for both you and your furry friend. 

The beach is spacious enough for both of you to enjoy, and there are plenty of trails and trails of fun for you and your pup to explore together. Plus, the park offers a variety of recreational activities, including kayaking, fishing, and birdwatching.

And, if you’re looking for a place to let your pup run free and play, there is also a designated dog-friendly section of the beach that allows dogs to run off-leash. 

So if you’re looking for the perfect dog-friendly beach in New Jersey, Gateway National Recreation Area is the place to go. With its beautiful coastal views, plenty of places to explore, and a variety of activities for you and your pup, it is one of the best dog-friendly beaches in the state.

Inside Scoop

Even though dogs are permitted all year round, not all areas are dog-friendly 24/7. Your best chances for an unexpected trip are the bayside beaches, which welcome dogs all year long as long as they’re leashed. To protect the endangered piping plovers that nest here, the area’s oceanfront beaches, however, are only accessible to dogs during the off-season.

#5: Stone Harbor Beach

stone harbor beach

Quick Hits

  • Features clean, pristine sand
  • Picnic tables and a board walk
  • Several trails to explore
  • Dogs need to be leashed

General Information

Stone Harbor Beach is a stunning, dog-friendly beach located in New Jersey. It’s known for its clean sand and crystal-clear waters, making it a great place to take a relaxing swim or go boating. The beach also has a variety of other amenities, such as picnic tables and grills, so you can easily spend the whole day there. 

There are plenty of trails to explore and a boardwalk, so you can get some exercise while taking in the stunning views. Stone Harbor Beach is also the perfect spot for a romantic getaway.

There are plenty of quaint restaurants and charming shops to explore, and the nearby towns offer a variety of activities to enjoy, from kayaking to wine tasting. It’s no wonder Stone Harbor Beach is a go-to destination for couples looking for a romantic escape. 

All year long, dogs on leashes are allowed to wander about this lovely beach as long as they stay inside 80th and 83rd Street’s limits. Starting the day after Labor Day and continuing through the Thursday before Memorial Day, dogs are welcome to get muddy and sand-covered here.

During peak season, leashed dogs are allowed to roam certain areas of the beach from 7 p.m. to sundown. Dogs are also allowed at Sunset Beach, which is close by and situated at the southernmost point of Cape May.

Inside Scoop

In the period of Memorial Day Weekend until Labor Day Monday, beachgoers in the area must pay an $8 daily fee if they plan on entering the beaches. Keep in mind that Stony Harbor Point, which is adjacent to the beach, does not permit dogs to be on the premises.

#6: Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area

higbee beach wildlife management area

Quick Hits

  • Features lots of wildlife and is great for birdwatching
  • Fishing and kayaking available
  • Nature trails to walk nearby
  • Allows leashed dogs

General Information

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area is well-known for its beautiful beaches and surrounding area. It is a dog-friendly New Jersey beach, with plenty of activities to do with your furry friend. Higbee Beach is the perfect place to relax and enjoy nature—whether you’re looking to take a stroll along the water’s edge or take a dip in the ocean. 

The beach is also home to some amazing wildlife, making it a great spot for bird-watching. The surrounding area also offers plenty of activities for both adults and children. From fishing and kayaking to camping and hiking, there are plenty of things to do in the area. Plus, there are restaurants, shops, and other attractions to explore. 

This picturesque beach is one of the few in the area that allows leashed dogs, so you and your pup can enjoy some quality beach time together. The beach is located in a protected wildlife area, so you and your dog can explore the surrounding marshland and enjoy the fresh sea air. There are plenty of walking trails for you to explore and take in the natural beauty of the area. 

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area is a great place to spend the day with your furry friend, or even a weekend. With its beautiful beaches, vast wildlife, and ample activities, it’s the perfect spot to make some memories.

Inside Scoop

There are no restrictions on the hours that visitors are allowed to access the Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area. Parking lots may be closed during the summer, so if you’re not prepared to find another place to park during this time, you might not be able to park your car—so just be sure the find alternatives if you’re insistent on going.

#7: Longport Dog Beach

longport dog beach

Quick Hits

  • Kayaks, paddle boards, and jet skis available
  • Boardwalk and pier to explore
  • Longport nearby for shopping
  • Leashed dogs allowed October through April

General Information

Longport Dog Beach is one of the most popular dog-friendly beaches in New Jersey. It’s known for its wide sandy shore and its stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. The beach has plenty of activities for both humans and their four-legged friends.

There’s a large dog park with a wide variety of agility equipment, as well as several designated swimming areas for canines. Plus, you can rent kayaks, paddle boards, and even jet skis for some water fun. 

There is also a great opportunity to explore the nearby town of Longport, which is only a short drive away. A boardwalk and pier are also located in this area, along with a number of shops and restaurants—so you’re assured that there won’t be any shortage of things to do in the area. If you’d like to explore some of the nearby trails and parks, or if you’d like to enjoy a little outdoor activity, there are a number of them available nearby.

Dogs are welcome to play in the sand and leap through the calm Green Egg Harbor Bay throughout the months of October 1 through April 30 as long as they are on a leash. Despite this, the majority of guests leave their dogs alone while enjoying this beach area.

Inside Scoop

When visiting Longport Dog Beach, be ready with treats, water, and poop bags. Since there are no on-site trash cans, be ready to clean up after your dog and bring extra poop bags just in case. All in all, Longport Dog Beach is the perfect destination for a fun-filled day out with your pup.

#8: Barnegat Light Beach

barnegat light beach

Quick Hits

  • Swimming, fishing, and kayaking
  • Boat tours and dolphin-spotting
  • Restaurants and shops nearby
  • Dogs not allowed from April to September

General Information

Barnegat Light Beach is a popular destination for beachgoers in New Jersey. The beach is known for its long stretches of sandy shoreline and its stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. The beach is dog-friendly, making it a great spot for those who want to bring their four-legged friends along.

There’s plenty to do at the beach, from swimming and sunbathing to fishing and kayaking. Of course, you can also just relax and enjoy the sound of the waves and the fresh ocean breeze. 

The surrounding area is also full of fun activities, from boat tours and dolphin-spotting excursions to lovely restaurants and shops. The nearby Barnegat Lighthouse is a popular destination for visitors, offering stunning views of the coastline. So if you’re looking for a beach with plenty to do, look no further than Barnegat Light Beach. 

On the northern end of Long Beach Island, an undeveloped barrier island sits this jewel of Ocean County. As long as they are on a leash, dogs are allowed to run free throughout the majority of the park. Lifeguarded swimming beaches and the Spizzle Creek Bird Trail are examples of off-limits locations.

Inside Scoop

Dogs aren’t allowed on the beach from April 15 to September 15, but in the off-season, they’ll enjoy exploring the wide length of sand. Visitors and their furry companions can enter Island Beach State Park for $5. 

#9: Brigantine North End Beach

Quick Hits

  • Nature trails and picnic area
  • Kayaking and paddleboarding
  • Welcomes dogs all year long
  • Lots of vegetation

General Information

Brigantine North End Beach is one of the most popular beaches in New Jersey. It’s known for its dog-friendly atmosphere, so visitors are more than welcome to bring their furry friends along for a day at the beach. But there’s more to the area than just the beach.

Just a few blocks away is the vibrant and bustling Brigantine City Marina, which is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and other attractions. 

There are also plenty of activities to take part in, from kayaking and paddleboarding to fishing and parasailing. Nearby, you can find nature trails and park areas, perfect for a leisurely stroll or a picnic. And if you’re looking for a bit of entertainment, there are plenty of options, too. From movie theaters to amusement parks, there’s something for everyone in the area. 

In contrast to other beaches in the region, Brigantine North End Beach welcomes dogs all year long as long as they’re on a leash and their waste is cleaned up after them. At this exciting location, you may go swimming, fishing, and paddleboarding. This is a beautiful beach to explore with your dog, with a large area of soft tan sand backed by dunes covered with rich vegetation. 

Inside Scoop

In order to bring a 4-wheel drive vehicle or a jet ski, you will need to get a permit to do so, and there is a daily admission fee of $10 that you need to pay.

Tips for Bringing Your Dog to Beaches in NJ

Bringing your pup to the beach is a great way to spend the day, but there are some important things to keep in mind in order to ensure that everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience. Here are some general tips for bringing your dog to the beach: 

  • Make sure your pup is up-to-date on their vaccinations. Before heading to the beach, make sure that your pup has all of the necessary vaccinations. This will help keep them and other beachgoers safe.

  • Make sure your pup is wearing a collar and leash at all times. This is important for their safety and to ensure that they don’t wander off.

  • Make sure to abide by all posted rules and regulations. Many beaches have specific rules regarding dogs, so make sure to read the signs and follow all of the rules.

  • Bring plenty of water for your pup. Make sure to bring plenty of water to keep your pup hydrated, as well as some snacks if they’re allowed.

  • Clean up after your pup and dispose of all waste in the designated trash cans. This is important for the safety of other beachgoers and the environment.

  • Don’t forget to bring your pup’s favorite toys! This will help keep them entertained and give them something to do while at the beach. 

Following these tips will help ensure that you and your pup have a safe and enjoyable experience at the beach. So grab your pup and your beach gear and head out for a fun-filled day of sun, sand, and surf!

Editorial Staff
Author: Editorial Staff