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Can I Take My Cat to the Beach? 6 Expert Tips

A nice fun day at the beach is the perfect way to spend an afternoon. And it’s not uncommon to see dog lovers with their furry friends on the beach running along the shoreline. We know that some beaches simply don’t allow dogs, and others only require that they be leashed at all times. But what about cats? Can you take your cat to the beach? And if so, what should you do to prepare for it? You’ll generally find that beaches that allow dogs, will generally allow cats as well

Cat ball divider 1 Can You Take Your Cat to the Beach?

These destinations are common in areas with a lot of beaches and dog lovers, particularly in California and Florida. And similar to rules and regulations surrounding dogs in these areas, cats must also follow the same rules.

This usually means that the cat will need to be leashed at all times, which is something that is actually recommended for the cat’s personal safety. So, if you plan to take your feline friend to the beach, be sure to first check the local beach to ensure that it allows pets, where the pets are allowed, and any stipulations regarding their time there.

Red cats on sea beach in Japan island_Saksa_shutterstock
Credit: SakSa, Shutterstock

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The 6 Tips for Taking Your Cat to the Beach

If you live in a coastal area, taking your cat to the beach might seem like the most natural thing in the world. There’s no better way to bond with your cat than getting up close and personal with nature.

But even if you’re ready to hit the sand with your kitty, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are too. Many cats don’t take well to new environments unless they’ve had lots of time to gradually expose them to similar situations before. If you have a shy or cautious feline friend, bringing them along on your next trip is not advisable. But if you think your cat would enjoy a day at the beach, here are ten tips for taking them there safely.

1. Make Sure Your Cat Is Up to Date on Vaccinations

cat walking in desert
Image Credit: AltArt, Shutterstock

It’s critical to keep your cat healthy and protected against diseases, even if they stay indoors. Cats should be vaccinated against rabies and FIV, given 12 weeks apart. They should also be vaccinated against FeLV, given every three years. If your cat is not up to date on his vaccinations, or if he’s never been vaccinated, don’t take him to an outdoor area where he could encounter wild animals.

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2. Don’t Forget the Essentials

Every time you take your cat on a trip, you need to make sure that you pack all the essentials – food, water, any medications for your cat, and a litter box. If you expect to be at the beach for an extended period, you should bring enough food, water, and litter for your cat as well. There are some outdoor cat water fountains that are designed to withstand outdoor conditions, but it’s always a good idea to bring along bottled water for your pet, just in case.

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3. Don’t Force Your Cat to Do Anything They Don’t Want to

cat resting in the beach
Image Credit: Bazz Lernprogramm, Pixabay

Cats are very sensitive to their environment and their owner’s mood. If you’re feeling excited and eager to explore, it’s possible your cat will get swept up in the general excitement of the trip. But if they seem unsure or apprehensive, don’t force them to go along with it.

If your cat stays indoors all the time, take them out at first when they’re younger, when they’re relaxed and not very mobile. As they get older, they’ll probably be less inclined to go out and about. If your cat is old, take them out for short periods and handle them gently.

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4. Use a Carrier or Leash and Harness

Remember, cats are much different than dogs when it comes to new things, people, and places. Unlike with dogs, many cats will be spooked by the unfamiliar sounds of the beach and might run away. If you suspect that your cat might bolt, take them to a more secluded area of the beach where there are fewer people around. As a precaution, consider using a cat harness to keep them from running away or getting lost.

You can also use a cat carrier to keep your pet safe and close by. If you use a carrier, make sure that it’s large enough for your cat to be comfortable and enjoy their time at the beach.

Are you looking for the perfect cat harness? We suggest Hepper's Cat Harness & Leash Set, which includes a nicely designed, machine-washable harness made from soft, sturdy velvet and mesh.

hepper harness and leash set

This harness is easy to put on and take off and features reinforced stitching, reflective stripes, and quick-release buckles. This set also includes a great leash made from durable nylon climbing rope.

At Excited Cats, we’ve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool cat company!

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5. Don’t Leave Your Pet Unattended

cat on the beach
Image Credit: steph photographies, Shutterstock

Even if your cat is the friendliest and most sociable feline in the world, don’t leave them unattended. If your cat is in a carrier, always keep it on your person to avoid theft. And if your cat is on a leash, keep them close by. Even well-behaved cats might get into trouble while you’re not watching them.

Watch out for sand, which can be very hot during mid-day. If you’re walking along the beach, be careful to avoid areas that have been recently washed out by the tide. It’s possible for the sand to be very hot enough to burn your cat’s paws. If you feel sand that’s a bit too hot to walk, go to an area that offers some shade. There are some products you can use to protect your cat from the heat of the sand, like a cooling mat or sand-friendly paw socks.

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6.Watch Out for Other Animals & People

Cats are territorial creatures who might lash out at other animals if they feel threatened. If you’re at a beach where there are lots of people and animals, keep an eye on your cat and make sure they don’t run off or get into trouble – thus why leashes and harnesses are important when visiting outdoor areas with your feline friend.

If you’re visiting a dog-friendly beach, make sure that your cat is wearing a harness to keep them safe. Some dogs might see your cat as prey and attempt to attack them. You also don’t know how your cat will react to another animal sniffing or coming up to them.

divider-catclaw1 About Cats and Water FAQs

Why do cats hate getting near water?

Most cats hate getting wet because it interferes with their cleaning and grooming habits. Cats lick themselves multiple times a day to get rid of fleas, ticks, and external parasites. They also groom themselves with their tongues to keep their fur clean and to smell good–to them, that is.

Their tongues have hundreds of tiny little papillae on them. These spines are made of keratin and are the same thing as your fingernails are made out of. These spines act like little squeegees and scrub their tongues and paws clean. Unfortunately, they cannot bathe themselves like dogs can by going to a dog wash or turning on the faucet and rinsing off. In most cases, owners will find that a wet cat is a miserable cat.

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Is it ever dangerous for your cat to be wet?

There are a few dangers to your cat when it is wet. The first is hypothermia. Cats have a lower body temperature than humans and when they are wet it drops even lower. When a cat gets wet and its body temperature gets too low, it can lead to freezing to death. The second danger is bacterial infections. When your kitty is wet and not able to properly clean themselves (something that’s difficult to accomplish when they’re wet) they’re more prone to bacterial infections.

Cat ball divider 1 Wrapping Things Up

Cats are natural explorers who are drawn to the outdoors by their curiosity and desire to hunt. By taking your cat to the beach, you’re letting them explore their wild side, while also providing them with the affection and comfort that they crave from their owners. Taking your cat to the beach is something that should be enjoyed by both you and your feline friend. By following these tips, you can keep them safe and secure.

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Featured Image Credit: vvvita, Shutterstock