Unleashed dogs restricted from beaches
Question: On a few occasions, I've seen owners with their unleashed dogs at various beaches on Oahu. My girlfriend and I want to bring our dog Archie to the beach with us; what does Hawaii law allow?
Answer: Although the law does not allow unleashed dogs on Oahu's sandy shores, if he's in the ocean he can swim unrestrained. An owner whose dog is running leash-free on the beach is in violation of the law.
More than 206,130 canines live with Oahu residents, and many families want the option of bringing their dog to the beach. The good news is that from Waianae to Waimanalo, Hawaii law allows leashed canines to enjoy more than beaches, which are listed on the Humane Society's Web site.
Although four off-leash dog parks have been established on Oahu, an off-leash dog beach has yet to become a reality. (The off-leash parks are the Humane Society's McInerny Dog Park, Bark Park, Moanalua Dog Park and Mililani Dog.) There are also more than 30 city and county parks that welcome leashed dogs.
Q: Any tips for taking Archie to the beach?
A: Show other beachgoers that it's easy and trouble-free to share the shoreline with canines. Keep your dog on leash at all times, pick up and dispose of his waste and make certain he's vaccinated and healthy. If he shows signs of unfriendly behavior, bring him home.
Ensure that Archie enjoys his beach experience by bringing plenty of fresh water to prevent dehydration. Select a shady spot to rest, and bring a beach umbrella or pet tent. Like humans, dogs can get sunburned, so apply a zinc-free sunblock to his nose and ears 30 minutes prior to going outside, and limit his sun exposure.
Be mindful of beach hazards such as fishhooks, dead fish, garbage and broken glass.
Q: What can I do to support the creation of an off-leash dog beach?
A: To join a committee for creating an off-leash dog beach, contact the Humane Society's advocacy liaison at 356-2247.
The Hawaiian Humane Society welcomes questions by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org
. Indicate "Pet Ohana" in the subject line. Or, write "Pet Ohana," Hawaiian Humane Society, 2700 Waialae Ave., Honolulu 96826.