How to Vacation With Your Dog on the OBX

How to Vacation With Your Dog on the OBX

Make your Outer Banks vacation an adventure for the whole family by bringing your favorite four-legged family member with you. Today we share everything you need to know about having a dog-friendly Outer Banks vacation. We’ll talk about our pet-friendly properties, beach regulations, and share tips and tricks to make your OBX vacation fun for the whole family.

Pet-Friendly OBX Rentals:

Pet-friendly rentals can be found throughout the OBX. No matter what town you wish to visit we have a rental available to meet you and your furry friend's needs. With spectacular waterfront, sound front, and great  amenities we can create the perfect fall vacation that even the make the dogs tail wag!
Pet-Friendly Vacations

Getting Here Safe:

Most visitors to the Outer Banks arrive by car. The time-honored tradition of loading up the station wagon…. or the SUV is alive and well. Your dog though needs some special consideration. When traveling with your dog in the car it is best to crate your dog. This is the safest way to ensure, in the event of an accident, that your dog remains safe. Make sure to stop frequently for exercise and fresh water. For more tips on traveling in the car with your dog Click here.

The Relaxed Dog:

Dogs are creatures of routine. They like habits and familiar surrounding, and while getting to the beach is a time of relaxation for you, it can be stressful for your dog. Here are a few tips to help make sure your dog transitions to beach life with as little stress as possible. Bring a familiar item like a stuffed animal, blanket or familiar toy. Exercise your dog before the car ride as tired dog travels easier. Upon arrival at your location immediately take your furry friend for a long walk to allow him to release energy and relax. Let your dog explore the vacation home, and get familiar with his/her surroundings being sure to look out for any unfamiliar or dangerous items. Talk to your dog in a normal voice as if you are at home. Dogs pick up on your tone if they think you're worried they will worry if they think your relaxed they will relax. 

Beach Regulations By Municipality:Dog on the Beach

All of the beaches on the Outer Banks are dog-friendly, but each has its own regulations. It is important to check with the municipality or federal agency to find out about specifics. One thing you will need to be sure of regardless of what beach you enjoy is to make sure your pooch has an up to date rabies tag.  Here is what you need to know about each town's policy. 

Dogs are allowed on the beach unleashed, but as a matter of public safety and courtesy, they should be under the watchful eye and in contact with their owner. 

Southern Shores:
Dogs are allowed on the beach before 9 a.m. and after 6 p.m. from May 15 - September 15. Year-round leash law. Dogs must be on leashes no longer than 10 feet. All pet waste must be collected immediately and deposited in appropriate containers. The same rules apply during all hours in the off-season. 

Kitty Hawk:
Dogs are allowed on the beach and must display a current rabies tag. Owner/handler must remove feces and possess a bag/container for waste removal at all times. From the Friday before Memorial Day until the day after Labor Day between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., dogs must be on a leash not exceeding 12 feet. Dogs may be taken off the leash only if they will not disturb other people on the beach and must be controlled by the handler, who must remain within 30 feet of the dog at all times. The leash must be with owner/handler at all times. 

Kill Devil Hills:Dog at the Beach
Between Memorial Day and Labor Day of each year, no dogs shall be permitted on the public beach between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. unless being used to aid a handicapped person. At all other times, dogs shall be on a leash and under the control of owner or handler.

Nags Head:
Dogs are allowed on the beach year-round as long as they are restrained by a leash not exceeding 10 feet. 

Cape Hatteras National Seashore:
Dogs are allowed on the beach year-round if they are restrained with a leash 6 feet or less at all times. 

Emergencies and Other Resources:

No matter how well you plan, dogs are…well, dogs, they tend to find trouble as much as they find fun. If you're in need of emergency veterinarian services the OBX has several choices to ensure your furry friend is moments away from great care. We all forget something when we head out on vacation it's just inevitable. Pet Smart is centrally located on the OBX and has everything you might have forgotten. Looking for a great dog park to let your dog have a little "off the leash" exercise, check out the Kitty Hawk Dog Park. 

We hope you and your dog have a fun and lively Outer Banks vacation. The fall is one of the best times for a family vacation on the OBX. With fewer crowds and miles of beautiful beaches, we are sure you and your dog will love a long walk on the OBX.

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