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Dog-Friendly Beaches on Anna Maria Island, Longboat Key and in the Sarasota Area

iStock_000003994583XSmallWho has a beach dog? We do! Doggies love the water, sometimes even more than their human counterparts. The Cannons’ marina dog, Gnarly, is definitely a beach-bound dog.
He likes going out for a cruise on a Grady-White Boat and he really enjoys running around in the sand and getting his paws wet too. So, where is it legal to take your furry pal to the beach in Florida’s Bradenton/Sarasota area?
Unfortunately, most of the Gulf beaches are not pet friendly (only one is), but there are plenty of areas on the Bay side and many parks and preserves that do allow dogs to take a dip. Here is a guide to some of the best dog-friendly beaches and water areas in our area.

Dog-Friendly Beach in Venice – Brohard Paw Beach

Venice has the only dog-friendly beach (yes, an ACTUAL Gulf beach!).  Since this park is a rarity, car parking can fill up fast, so why not just take your boat?  You can pull up your Scout Boat right to the beach, so you and your furry pal can jump in and swim to shore. This park allows you and your dog to splash around in the Gulf water and run on the beach.  There are also fire hydrants, showers and water fountains for Fido.  If you’re in the mood for a picnic, there are plenty of picnic tables here so this makes a great boating destination to stop off with your doggie after boating around in your Grady-White Boat. You can enjoy your picnic and your dog can enjoy fresh water from the park’s doggie water fountains.
Location: 1800 Harbor Dr. S., Venice (near the Venice airport)

Dog-Friendly Beach on Anna Maria Island – Palma Sola Causeway

Located on State Road 64, just minutes from Anna Maria Island, the Palma Sola Causeway has always been a top destination for dog owners to take their furry friends for a swim.  This might not be on the Gulf, but it is on Palma Sola Bay and there is plenty of sand and water to enjoy.  This beach is VERY pet friendly…not just for dogs but for horses too! On the South side of the beach, this is a perfect spot to bring your boat. Anchor your Scout Boat and swim to shore!  This is also a wonderful spot to water ski or tube – so bring the whole family and the dog! Covered picnic tables are available on the North side of the street.
Location: On State Road 64 (Manatee Avenue), Bradenton (just West of 75th Street).

Dog-Friendly Beach on Longboat Key – Joan Durante Park

This park does not allow dogs to frolic in the water, but it does allow you to take your furry friend on a nice, long nature walk. The park features a boardwalk that weaves its way through mangroves and trees in and around the Bay. A lovely spot with 32 acres including a botanical garden, gazebo, restrooms and picnic tables.
Location:  5550 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Longboat Key (Just North of Euphemia Haye restaurant)
As a reminder, with the hot Florida sun, our pristine white sand can get very hot, so if you are taking your dog to the beach, make sure to do it in the morning or late afternoon when the sun is less intense so it won’t burn your dogs little paw pads. Have fun and splash on!