Jersey beach is "going to the dogs"

June 30, 2009 4:04:43 PM PDT
Officials in Long Beach Township are doing something different this summer. They're sending a section of a local beach to the dogs. The dogs love it but not all the humans are happy.In a world where most beaches at the Jersey shore want nothing to do with dogs, Long Beach Township is trying something different. A small section of Bayview Park in Brant Beach has been designated as a dog beach where our four footed friends can run free, sinking their paws in the sand and cooling off in the waters of the Barnegat Bay.

"There's never been any place to take them. They don't let them on the beach from May 1st to October 1st so this is a wonderful opportunity," said Candace Moore of Martinsville.

"The island used to have a lot of land you could run your dogs and now it's so built up. Dogs love water and this is a great place for them to come," said Kathleen Moore of Arlington, Virginia.

Local officials see the dog park as a way to make pet friendly tourists and local residents happy. In this economy they're all about finding ways to attract people to the area.

"To maximize the facilities and to allow a greater number of people to utilize recreational facilities," said Beach Supervisor Don Myers.

There are opponents to the dog park. Some are worried about waste in the water or the possibility of animals going after wind surfers and kayakers who launch here.

"Dog waste, my granddaughters are 5 and 2 and they like to dig in the sand. Who knows what they're gonna pick up," said Sue Steber of Ewing.

"I don't get why they may be pooping and peeing because dogs don't poop and pee in the ocean. It's mostly kids," said Caitlin Watford of Haymarket, Virginia.

The dog park is right across from the Long Beach Township municipal building in the 6800 block of Long Beach Boulevard. Dogs get on the beach for free, but owners need beach tags. It may be a bit controversial yet but there's no doubt that the dogs love it.

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