One of the few dog-friendly beaches at the Jersey Shore is about to join the ranks of those where Man’s Best Friend is not allowed – at least during certain hours.
Fisherman’s Cove in Manasquan, colloquially known as the “Dog Beach” for its popularity with dog owners, will no longer be open to four-legged visitors between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. starting Memorial Day. The daytime dog ban will run through Labor Day at the beach, which is situated along the Manasquan River, just west of the inlet and ocean.
The decision by the Monmouth County Park System, announced Thursday, is the result of an influx of non-dog-owners accessing the site since the promenade which runs along nearby Manasquan Inlet was expanded to the edge of the beach.
“In addition, other activities including kayak launching, bird watching, and fishing take place,” a statement from the Borough of Manasquan, which does not have any jurisdiction over the area, said. “People with younger children avoiding the ocean waves and walkers – all without dogs – are now using the site.”
The dog ban is to help “avoid conflict,” the statement went on to say.
Prior to 10 a.m. and after 4 p.m., dogs will still be permitted on the Fisherman’s Cove beach, “providing they are leashed and under control,” the statement said.
The prohibition immediately drew backlash on social media, with local residents pointing to the historical nature of the beach as a place where dogs were welcome, including state Sen. Joe Vitale.
“This is ridiculous,” Vitale posted from a social media account. “It’s the dog beach. The majority of the visitors utilize the beach for their dog to swim, excercise or hang out. Everyone coexists just fine – even non dog owners.”
“I can’t believe this, what a sad, sad decision,” said Brittany North. “Not only was this a locals secret hide out, but one of the only places on the Jersey Shore that we could enjoy with our fury family members. Lack of dog-friendly areas is such a disappointment, and now the list has become shorter. What a shame.”
A few people agreed with the ban.
“Little kids also like the cove and have a right to enjoy it also without unleashed dogs scaring them,” said John Moscov.
Anyone with questions on the new policy is asked to contact the parks department at 732-842-4000.