Tips Before You Take a Dip

3 May 2008

Spring is here and that means summer – and warmer weather – are on their way. Which means more days outside, and more ways to try and cool off. A great option after a fun day out at the park with your canine is to take the plunge and go for a swim. But don’t think your pup can get her paws wet in any of NYC’s water. There are things you  need to know, and places to avoid before setting out.
There’s one place in the greater NYC area where dogs can splash around, unrestricted: The Dog Beach in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. You’ll want to go in the entrance at Prospec Park West and 9th Street. Go past the Tennis House and through the meadow to the Upper Pool. You’ll be glad you made the triek – the beach is paved, and surrounded by a fence to keep your pooch safe.

There are several other areas where people take their dogs to swim, that aren’t designated doggie swimming holes – and therefore pose threats of fines, contaminated water, even aggressive animals! According to, in 2000, a swan in Central Park killed a Jack Russell Terrier that belonged to designer Donna Karan’s daughter.

If you and your pooch are up for some adventure there are places that other dog lovers recommend – although you might want to avoid the crowds and go early in the morning when you’re less likely to be bothered.  Here are some other swim spots around the area:

Jamaica Bay, Gateway National Recreation Area, Brooklyn & Queens/Floyd Bennet Field

A former military abse, this 317 acre park also has one of the last natural sand dune systems in the city.

Gravesend Bay Beaches, Coney Island, Brooklyn

This area has a few quiet beaches that are open to the public, but not “official” beaches – meaning it’s a “swim at your own risk” sort of a situation, with no lifeguards on duty.

Francis Lewis Park, Queens

This beach is kind of dirty so you may not want to hassle with it, but the appeal is apparently that the water is relatively calm, and there’s a gate that creates some security.
To get there take the Whitestone expressway toward the Whitestone bridge, and take LAST EXIT BEFORE TOLL. Go to the end and make a right.

~Happy Pampering (and/or swimming!)


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Posted by Alexis at 09:52 AM

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