Give Your Pup More Time Off-Leash at These Dog-Friendly New England Beaches


A great beach adventure for your pup doesn't require chairs and a cooler!

In this series, we have pulled together the best beaches around the country that allow your dog off leash during fall. We've started in our very own backyard- New England.

Tell us your favorites in the comments.

The Beach Days of Summer might be over for you, but October is the perfect time for your dog to enjoy the beach. The cooler weather is better for dogs that can burn their paws on hot sand or get dehydrated from the lack of shade in summer. Many beaches normally closed to dogs in peak times also now welcome dogs with some allowing dogs to run off leash. We have pulled together the best beaches around the country that allow your dog OFF LEASH during fall. Tell us your favorites in the comments!


NORTH EAST JENNINGS DOG BEACH, FAIRFIELD, CT 

From October to March, your dog can run leash free on the 27 acres that comprise Jennings Dog Beach. It’s a popular place for people from surrounding areas and if your dog likes to play with new dogs, there will be plenty to choose from. There’s also a dog park nearby if you want your dog to play off beach and in a more shaded area. 

BAY VIEW BEACH, SACO, ME 

Starting October 1, dogs can run off leash anywhere on this fine sandy beach with a gradual incline. Bay View Beach is crowded in summer with a small parking lot, during fall you will have no trouble social distancing while your pup enjoys his freedom to run. It’s also close to Old Orchard Beach where dogs are welcome to walk with you along Old Orchard Street after Labor Day. Stay at one of the many dog friendly hotels or vacation rentals in the area. Also nearby is our second favorite beach, Kinney Shores, which allows dogs off leash starting October 1.

GOOCH’S BEACH, KENNEBUNKPORT, ME 

With over 3,000 feet of shoreline and tons of space to romp, Gooch’s Beach is a favorite with dogs. During the summer, dogs are allowed early morning and evening. They can even run off leash in summer before 9 am. Starting Labor Day through June 15, dogs can run off leash at any time of day. You can also walk down to Middle & Mother’s Beach which are dog friendly. Gooch’s just provides the most room to play and, in our opinion, is the most beautiful. 

NANTUCKET ISLAND, MA  

Nantucket overall is very dog friendly with lots of places you can take your leashed dog – from ponds to restaurants to shops. Any beach without a lifeguard, you can bring your leashed dog all year. There are 2 beaches that allow dogs off leash. Nobadeer Beach is located on the South side of the island while Steps Beach is located in the North. Both can be a bit steep to get down to the water, but they are quiet and beautiful. Neither has a lifeguard nor permanent concessions. Steps beach does have restrooms. You can access both beaches using Nantucket’s bus system, which is free for pets.

JENNESS BEACH, RYE, NH 

Dogs are not allowed on any of the state beaches in NH at anytime. However, there are a few town beaches that will welcome your pup. Enjoy the view of the beautiful homes lining the streets of Rye, NH as you drive to the best beach in NH: Jenness beach. From the Saturday after Labor Day until the Saturday before Memorial Day, dogs are welcome to run free as long as they can be controlled with voice commands (brush up on our training!). Keep in mind that the town beach section is split in two by a section designated as a state park, but you can get from one town section to the other by cutting through the parking lot. Look for signs. Nearby is also Foss Beach, which welcomes dogs and has free parking.


Worried about Your Dog Off Leash at the Beach? Just bring your SpotOn Fence to the beach and set up a perimeter keeping your dog away from hazards like rocks or a parking lot and inside the leash free area. If you need to brush up on your map-making skills, watch our video about creating a Spoton Fence map.  


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