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If you’ve known me for 5 seconds, there is something about me that is no mystery – I love my dogs. Lucia and Sherman are such an integral part of our family, and I basically shout it from the rooftops. Yes, I am that (possibly annoying) person who whips her phone out to show people photos of my precious pooches. I may or may not continually add to Sherman’s bow tie collection so he has a dapper wardrobe to show off. I’m not ashamed: my dogs are the best!!! Another thing you’ll learn about me if you get to know the story of how my husband and I met…is that we met because we were walking our dogs on pet beach. My dogs stole my heart…and Justin stole mine too. I’m just going to throw it out there that when it comes to preparing for the pet beach, we know a thing or two. Now that the summer season is upon us, I wanted to share some tips and items we always have on hand as pet beach essentials.
Our dogs absolutely love going to the beach. We are very fortunate to have quite a few options in our area (living in Florida has some perks), and it just so happens that we have an amazing one only a stone’s throw away from our house. After a bit of trial and error over the years, I’ve accumulated an assortment of pet beach essentials that I keep on hand in a beach bag so I can quickly pack up the pups and head out for some sun and surf! Thankfully, I can grab most of these items easily at PetSmart, so my beach trips are a cinch!
First: let’s talk leashes. A lot of pet beaches have rules about leashes. Ours have a restriction on retractable leashes: they aren’t allowed and your pup needs to stay on a 6 foot leash or shorter. Keep that in mind, and get your pets a beach friendly leash. Even if there isn’t a rule about retractable leashes, let me tell you: you do not want to mess with sand and salt water with the retractable. It’s a nightmare.
Most likely your dog is going to relieve himself or herself at some point during your beach trip: be prepared with waste bags. I bought a big pack of waste bags and always have them handy. They’re less bulky than carrying around an old grocery bag.
We can’t forget about water! Your dog is going to get thirsty (especially if they happen to take a sip of salty ocean water on accident), and as much as I love Lucia and Sherman, I am NOT going to share a water bottle with them. We have a couple of collapsible water dishes that are really handy to take along to the pet beach: I definitely recommend one for your beach bag!
I also have separate towels for the dogs when we go to the beach. My recommendation is to actually have two towels for each dog. Why, you ask? One is for the beach, and one is for their bath afterward! Our local pet beach has a dog wash station in the parking lot. Take advantage if yours does as well (or if there is a foot wash that you could utilize: be resourceful)! I bring along their dog shampoo and a separate, fresh towel for their after beach bath! Bonus points for the fact that your pups can air dry on the way home with their head out the window of the car!
One other item I would highly recommend for pet beach travels is a hammock for the back seat of your car. Basically the hammock attaches to the front seat head rests, drapes over the back seat, and attaches at the back head rests. Your dogs can hop in the back seat and track sand, dirt, and water in and your seats will be protected. When you get home you can take the hammock out and shake it out or clean it if needed! It’s a life saver.
As much as fun outings to the pet beach are a way I show love to Lucia and Sherman, I can never forget the fact that I express love to them through food and nutrition. Lucia in particular has always had a sensitive stomach: it took us a while and some trial and error, but we figured out that certain foods are the best for her. Lamb is one of those foods! I’m so thankful that PetSmart has a wide variety of food and treats available, so I can get my girl just what she needs! Seriously – my mind was blown when I realized how many options are out there. On my latest trip to PetSmart I wheeled my cart straight to the dog food aisle. The Purina ONE® Smartblend Lamb & Rice Formula is a favorite of hers (Sherman loves it too!), so I made sure to pick up a large bag.
Of course, I have to pair their food with a treat! Lucia and Sherman went NUTS for Purina® Beggin’ Strips. I picked up the bacon and peanut butter flavor in the treat aisle, and I don’t know if I’ve ever seen my dogs more excited about a treat than after I opened up the bag and they caught a whiff of them.
It just so happens that in the month of June, you can get a $10 PetSmart gift card when you purchase $40 in participating Purina products: score!!! My large bag of The Purina ONE® Smartblend and my bag of Purina® Beggin’ Strips cost a little over $40, so you better believe I’m going to take advantage of that promotion! And guess what: you can redeem the promotion an unlimited number of times, so if you happen to shop more than once in the month of June you can take advantage! Check out the site for more information and to redeem the offer. You can upload your receipt until 7/9/2017. A physical gift card will be sent out 4-8 weeks after the redemption to use on a future trip to PetSmart!
Make sure you click here to check out the ways that pets have stolen the hearts of their humans! And I want to know: how do you show your pets you love them?