As the weather heats up, Fido loves nothing more than a good swim to cool off. Running through the tide at the beach will surely exhaust that pent-up pup, and pet spas soothe the muscles of any aging best friend. Finding dog-friendly swim spots in L.A. just isn’t easy, though, so start at this list of the area’s five best bets to take that pup out for a splash.
Rosie’s Dog Beach
Between Roycroft and Argonne avenues
Long Beach, CA 90803
Designated as the only dog beach along 75 miles of LA beaches, this 235-yard stretch of shoreline offers pooches a chance to swim in the Pacific Ocean. There is plenty of metered parking, and it’s free after 5 p.m. at the Granada Avenue parking lot. A “Fountain of Woof” to wash off awaits your dog at the Argonne Avenue parking lot as well. Regulations to use the beach include adult supervision for social dogs older than four months with current tags and collars. Owners must carry leashes, pick up after their pets and assume all responsibility for injuries.
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VCA Kennel Club Resort and Spa
3301 Fujita St.
Torrance, CA 90505
Price: $15 for a 15-minute swim session
As the name suggests, this is the place to take your dog for a resort-style day of pooch pampering that includes swimming and Hydrotherapy. Since the 1980s, VCA has offered exceptional conditions for pet sitting, and has since blossomed into a complete package of treating your dog to a bit of paradise. Limo service is available for traveling in style. Everything from Hydrosurge Bathing System massages to bubble, medicated, moisturizing and flea baths are offered for your dog’s spa needs.
Bow Wow Bungalow
2711 N. California St.
Burbank, CA 91504
Price: $24 for up to 6 hours/$35 for more than 6 hours/$20 Tuesday special
Wow any dog at this amusement park-style water wonderland. Bow Wow Bungalow features playing yards designated for every doggy personality, optimistically named, No Bark Park. It features a Mongrol Matterhorn complete with waterfalls and shooters. There is a 42-foot, bone-shaped drool pool with bridges and tunnels guaranteed to make Fido’s swimming escapade one to remember. Friendly staff attentively watch each dog in a clean, safe environment, and can send pictures of your pet’s vacation via email. Be sure your dog is older than 6 months, vaccinated, neutered and social.
2400 N. San Fernando Rd.
Los Angeles, CA 90065
Price: $6 per hour/$25 half day up to five hours/$35 full day more than five hours
Specializing in pet sitting, day care, grooming and training, this facility also offers dogs a place to roam free and get wet. Included in the 14,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor playgrounds are several wading pools to swim in and cool off. Play areas are also loaded with toys, and staff assists with plenty of attention for each pet. Exercise and snuggle time come free of charge. Dogs should be older than 6 months, have current tags, vaccinations and be on flea medication.
Two Hands Four Paws Canine Massage and Rehab
2240 Federal Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90064
Highly recommended by previous clients, this facility is the place to take your aging or physically challenged dog for swim therapy. Special equipment helps Fido get back into shape while frolicking in the salt-water pool. Swim therapy aides in pooch recovery post surgery, and can help them regain function. A release from a vet is necessary for swim time, and make sure your dog was recently bathed, its tags are current and vaccinations are up to date. Dogs will need an evaluation to be approved for swimming.
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Sheila Szabo is a born cheerleader, and recovering love addict. Passionate about love, art, cooking, storytelling, and inspiring others, she is currently a freelance creative writer from her home in Northern San Diego. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.