Fort DeSoto Dog Beach

the fort desoto dog beach is over 300 yards long and provides a great environment for dogs to play in the ocean

The dog beach at Ft DeSoto Park provides a great environment for dogs to play

The Fort DeSoto Dog Beach is hugely popular with dog owners who visit Ft De Soto Park. The dog beach is connected to Paws Playground, which provides pups a chance to romp and chase on grass as well.

Located on the southern-most tip of Tierra Verde, St. Petersburg residents love the secluded beach that gives them a view of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge and huge tankers moving into and out of the Gulf.

Fort De Soto's Paw Playground was recently listed in the Top 5 U.S. Dog Parks by Southern Living Magazine, and well it should be.

With the beautiful stretch of Florida beach opposite a grassy area of 3 acres (divided into fenced sections for both small and large dogs,) Paw Playground has doggie showers, plastic doo bags, and water fountains for both dogs and owners.

Just so you know, the Bay Pier parking lot gets very crowded on weekends, so if you want to checkout the dog beach without a lot of hoopla, Tuesdays and Wednesdays would probably be your best bet.

There is a lot to see and do at the Fort DeSoto Dog Beach

the bay pier sign is your landmark for parking at fort desoto dog beach

The Bay Pier sign is your landmark for parking. The dog beach crowd shares this lot with visitors who wish to take the Egmont Key Ferry out to the park on Egmont Key.

paw playground sign for parking at fort desoto dog beach

Just opposite the Bay Pier sign, you'll see one directing you to make the next left into the parking lot.

paw playground rules sign for the fort desoto dog beach park

Just west of the parking lot, you'll find the fenced-in area of the Paws Playground. Please make sure you are familiar with the rules. Residents are VERY protective of this beautiful area, and they will not hesitate to call the Ranger on their cell phone.

paw playground is divided into two areas for big and small dogs at the fort desoto dog beach park

The Ft DeSoto Park Paws Playground is divided into two separate areas for dogs, by size. Dog owners love this feature and said this is not the norm in other states.

paw playground has cooling stations for your pup at the fort desoto dog beach park

The "cooling stations" provide sprays to helps dogs cool down and to wash the sand out of their fur. (Please note: You may NOT use soap or shampoo in this area.) There are also drinking fountains for pet owners.

fort desoto dog beach rules

The path to the Fort DeSoto Dog Beach runs along the south side of Paws Playground. Since dogs are unleashed in this area, please make sure yours has the behavior to participate.

the fort desoto dog beach draws a crowd on weekends

The dog beach can get pretty crowded at times on the weekend, however, animals and people seem to get along very well. PLEASE make sure you "pick up" after your dog.

the fort desoto dog beach has markers at each boundary

The dog beach boundaries are marked in both directions. There is plenty of room.

lots of pets like to swim at the fort desoto dog beach

Lots of dogs like to chase chew toys into the surf. They were having a blast when I was there. Please note: More experienced owners bring a plastic bowl and seperate water jug for their pets. Dogs can get very thirsty running on the beach and swimming in the salt water.

huge tankers pass by the fort desoto dog beach

Huge tankers pass by the Fort DeSoto Dog Beach. They can cause very large waves. If your pet is not a good swimmer, you might wait a few minutes until the Gulf calms down before throwing his toy back out in water.

concession stand at the fort desoto dog beach

Fortunately, if you forget something basic (from sunscreen to a lawn chair) the dog beach concession stand will likely have it. (However, they can be a little pricey.)

the fort desoto dog beach and paws playground is largely supported by donations from pet owners

The Paws Playground and Fort DeSoto Dog Beach are largely supported by volunteers and donations. The Friends of Fort DeSoto spend over $5000 annually for plastic doo bags, alone. If possible, please slip a dollar or two into the donation box as you leave.

I hope you and your dog enjoy this beautiful area as much as I did.

Fort DeSoto Park Official Website

Would you like to retire in Florida like I did?

Go to Florida Beach home from Fort DeSoto Dog Beach page




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