Young couple sitting on one of the dog friendly beaches in Connecticut
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In this article, we’re going to be exploring the best dog friendly beaches in Connecticut.

This beautiful state in the southern part of New England has a great mix of coastal cities, small towns and rural areas.

Boasting over 300 miles of coastline, Connecticut has plenty of gorgeous beaches.

So what are you waiting for?! Let’s dive straight in and take a look at some of the best beaches for dogs in Connecticut.

Oh, and by the way, you might also be interested in some great dog friendly beaches in the neighboring state of Massachusetts.

February 2024 update: Check out our brand new guide to the best dog friendly beaches in New England!

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Dogs running on a dog friendly Connecticut beach at sunset – photo by Mara Judith de Oliveira on Pexels

1. Compo Beach

Address: 60 Compo Beach Road, Westport, CT 06880

Situated in the town of Westport, Connecticut, Compo Beach is one of the truly great pet friendly beaches in CT.

New York City to Compo Beach is a mere 53 miles.

Compo Beach is in fact a beautiful 29-acre park. The park contains an extensive sand beach that runs along the shore of Long Island Sound. It also borders the 23.7-mile-long Saugatuck River.

On some days, there can be waves at Compo Beach, however it is a fairly calm part of Long Island Sound. This makes it a safe place for you to take your favorite furball!

Specially designated off-leash areas at this gorgeous Connecticut dog beach

Dogs are permitted on Compo Beach in designated areas from October 1 through March 30.

Dogs are required to be on a leash on many parts of Compo Beach, however there are also specially designated off-leash areas – just look for the signposts.

Beach facilities here are great and include volleyball courts, bathroom facilities, benches and a snack bar.

All of this makes for a great trip with your pup! Compo Beach is definitely a fantastic dog-friendly beach in Connecticut – go and check it out for yourselves!

Website: Compo Beach, Westport, Connecticut

2. Jennings Dog Beach

Address: 880 South Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824

Jennings Dog Beach, located in Fairfield, is one of the many beaches in Connecticut that allow dogs.

It’s a short, but pleasant, 20-minute drive from Compo Beach to Jennings Beach, along Interstate 95.

The largest of Fairfield’s beaches, Jennings Beach covers an area of 27 acres and has beautiful views of Long Island Sound.

A large sandy beach area for your dog to enjoy!

You can enjoy Jennings Beach with your dog from October 1 through March 31.

There are good amenities here, with bathroom facilities, volleyball poles and a concession stand.

The beautiful large sandy beach area provides a fabulous playground for your pooch to have tons of fun!

Website: Jennings Beach, Fairfield, Connecticut

3. Penfield Beach

Address: 323 Fairfield Beach Road, Fairfield, CT 06824

Penfield Beach, also located in Fairfield, is a dog friendly east coast beach.

One of five town beaches in Fairfield, it is just half a mile south of Jennings Beach.

Dogs are permitted on Penfield Beach during the off season, from October 1 through March 31. Dogs must be on a leash at all times.

A fabulous dog-friendly beach in Connecticut!

Here you will find a long stretch of gorgeous sandy beach, perfect for a brisk walk with your pup.

Amenities include a large covered deck, picnic tables and charcoal grills, bathroom facilities and a snack bar.

For a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere, this dog friendly Connecticut beach is a real winner!

Website: Penfield Beach, Fairfield, Connecticut

4. Southport Beach – A Fabulous Connecticut Dog Beach

Address: 1505 Pequot Avenue, Southport, CT 06890

Southport Beach is nestled in a sheltered bay, roughly halfway between Compo Beach and Penfield Beach.

This tiny section of beach is very quiet and covers just 2.5 acres.

Spectacular views of Long Island Sound

You’ll find bathroom facilities at Southport Beach, along with some spectacular views of Long Island Sound.

Your pup is welcome at Southport from October 1 through March 31 and must be kept on a leash at all times.

So if it’s peace and quiet that you and your canine friend are looking for, then head to Southport Beach – you won’t regret it!

Website: Southport Beach, Southport, Connecticut

Hammonasset State Park, Madison, CT Doggie Walk – video courtesy of Stan CT on YouTube

5. Hammonasset Beach State Park

Address: 1288 Boston Post Road, Madison, CT 06443

Hammonasset Beach State Park is less than an hour’s drive south of Hartford, the Connecticut state capital.

It’s located in Madison, a town in the southeastern corner of New Haven County.

Hammonasset is the largest shoreline park in Connecticut and occupies a 2-mile stretch of beachfront on Long Island Sound.

Leashed dogs are welcome year-round in the picnic areas of Hammonasset Beach State Park.

Dogs are permitted on the State Park beach in the off season ONLY, from September 30 through April 1. They must be on a leash and kept under control at all times.

The State Park facilities are excellent and include a boardwalk, bathrooms, a nature center, picnic shelters, picnic tables and a concession stand.

Please note that in the off-season, the park gates are unlocked at 8am and are locked again at sunset.

Hammonasset is famous for its stunning sunsets over the water

Although Hammonasset Beach State Park is one of the most popular attractions in the state, the majority of visitors come in the summer months.

This means that it’s a lot quieter during the autumn and winter months, when you and your furry friends are allowed on the beach.

There’s plenty of parking here and it’s very convenient for the beach.

Hammonasset is famous for its stunning sunsets over the water.

With its gorgeous 2-mile-long stretch of beach, Hammonasset Beach State Park is undoubtedly one of the best dog friendly beaches in Connecticut!

Website: Hammonasset Beach State Park, Madison, Connecticut

Daybreak at Cove Island Park, Stamford, Connecticut
Daybreak at Cove Island Park, Stamford, Connecticut – photo by David Kanigan on Pexels

6. Cove Island Park

Address: 363 Weed Avenue, Stamford, CT 06902

Cove Island Park is a true Connecticut gem.

This 83-acre park, beach and recreation area is located in the Cove district of Stamford.

With a population of over 135,000 people, Stamford is the second-most populous city in Connecticut.

Stamford is in Fairfield County and lies just 35 miles from downtown Manhattan.

Cove Island Park is easy to get to and has plenty of parking. Parking permits are required at Cove Island from May 1 through September 30.

Leashed dogs are welcome here all year round

Cove Island has lots of great amenities, including a playground, an expansive lawn area, BBQ grills, a picnic shelter and two beautiful sandy beaches.

The park also contains a wide variety of wildlife, including an incredible 309 species of birds.

Leashed dogs are welcome here all year round. And the two beautiful sandy beaches are some of the best CT dog friendly beaches that you’ll find.

So head to Cove Island Park with your four-legged friends and have an amazing time!

Website: Cove Island Park, Stamford, Connecticut

Dogs running on a beautiful sandy dog friendly beach in Connecticut
Dogs running on a sandy beach – photo by Lior Binyamini on Pexels

7. Esker Point Beach

Address: 900 Groton Long Point Road, Groton, CT 06340

Esker Point Beach is nestled in the southeastern corner of Connecticut, in the town of Groton.

It lies just 12 miles from the border with Rhode Island.

From Hammonasset Beach State Park to Esker Point Beach is a 40-minute drive east along I-95.

Esker Point Beach is a man-made beach that stretches for around 600 feet.

A beautiful off-leash dog beach in Connecticut

And the best thing about Esker Point is that it’s one of the few dog beaches in Connecticut where your pup can roam free without a leash!

The only stipulation is that your dog must be kept under control.

Dogs are welcome here all year round as well. The only times that they are not permitted on the beach are when there are concerts or other events held there.

Amenities at Esker Point are excellent. They include nine beach volleyball courts, restrooms, an outdoor shower, and shaded picnic areas.

So bring Fido along to Esker Point Beach in Groton and enjoy one of the best pet friendly beaches in Connecticut!

Website: Esker Point Beach, Groton, Connecticut

Man with a beautiful West Siberian Laika in a Connecticut park
Man with a beautiful West Siberian Laika in a park – photo by Zen Chung on Pexels

8. Bluff Point State Park

Address: 55 Depot Road, Groton, CT 06340

Bluff Point State Park in Groton is a mere 10-minute drive from Esker Point Beach.

This delightful Connecticut state park is a public recreation area and nature reserve.

It’s situated on an undeveloped peninsula on Long Island Sound. You’ll find it tucked between the Poquonnock River and Mumford Cove.

The park and reserve are both open year-round from 8am to sunset.

Dogs are allowed on the beach at Bluff Point State Park in the off-season only, from September 2 through March 31.

Depending on exactly when you and your furball visit, you may need to pay a State Park Fee. Check the state park website for more information on fees.

Perfect for nature-loving dog owners

As Bluff Point State Park is a nature reserve, containing some rare and endangered plants and animals, please take care to remain on the park trails.

This means that neither you nor your pooch will disturb the plants, animals or rocks.

A lot of the park is only accessible by foot.

So if you’re a nature-loving dog owner and you and your pup want to enjoy some fresh air, hiking trails and a beautiful little beach, then a visit to Bluff Point State Park is a must.

This is a great little dog-friendly beach in Connecticut.

Website: Bluff Point State Park, Groton, Connecticut

Conclusion about Dog Friendly Beaches in Connecticut

There are lots of dog friendly beaches on the east coast of the US and in this article, we’ve given examples of some of the best ones in the state of Connecticut.

There are plenty of beaches in CT that allow dogs and hopefully this guide has helped you to find one that’s perfect for you and your pooch.

So go out there, explore and have fun!

If you’ve enjoyed finding out all about the gorgeous beaches in Connecticut that allow dogs, then take a look at our comprehensive round-up of some of the best dog beaches in the US

Frequently Asked Questions about Dog Friendly Beaches in Connecticut

Are dogs allowed at Hammonasset Beach?

Dogs are permitted at Hammonasset Beach in the off season ONLY, from September 30 through April 1.

Which beaches in CT allow dogs?

There are many beaches in CT that allow dogs, though mostly only in the off season. Compo Beach, Jennings Beach, Penfield Beach, Southport Beach, Hammonasset Beach and Bluff Point State Park Beach all permit dogs in the off season. At Esker Point Beach in Groton, dogs are welcome all year round.

So what do YOU think? Which is YOUR favorite dog beach in Connecticut? Let us know by leaving a comment – we’d love to hear from you.

Things change all the time, so if any of the information in this article is incorrect or out-of-date, please let us know – just leave us a comment below. Many thanks!


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