Bringing your pets to Cape May
Cape May is a great destination if you like to vacation with your pets, but we want to caution you that Cape May City's beaches are not pet friendly in season, and the Lower Township beaches along the Delaware Bay are the only beaches which are dog-friendly all year.
Why leave your pet at home? A family vacation need not be without the most important member of the family. Be it a guest house or hotel, Cape May has a nice selection of Pet Friendly places to stay. Mind the rules though, almost all Pet Friendly Accommodations take dogs, some take cats and dogs. Many have restrictions regarding the weight of the dog and the number of pets which can be accommodated.
- Pet-Friendly Accommodations
- Cape May City dog policies
- Dog-Friendly Restaurants
- Dog-Friendly Activites
- Cape May Dog Park
- Emergency Veterinary Care
- Read "The Four Legged Tourist", our monthly pet column
Dog-Friendly Beaches in Cape May (also see map below)
| Cape May City
||Dogs are permitted only during the months of November, December, January, February and March. Dogs shall be kept on a leash at all times and be accompanied by their owner or caretaker. The owner or caretaker shall carry a dog waste disposal device. Any owner or caretaker of a dog who permits such dog to leave animal waste on the Boardwalk, Promenade, beach without disposing of same shall be subject to penalties.|
|Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area||Allows dogs from September 1 to April 30. Higbee is owned by the State of New Jersey and is open from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. Although you may see dogs year-round, it is not technically permitted. We would recommend reading NJ Department of Fish & Wildlife WMA Regulations for more information.|
|Cape May Point||Dogs are permitted from November 1 through March 14. Dogs must be leashed at all times on a leash no longer than 6 feet. Dogs must be accompanied by an owner over 12 years of age.|
|Sunset Beach||Allows dogs September 15 to April 15|
|Lower Township, along the Delaware Bay||Dogs are permitted year-round. Dogs are to be leashed at all times when they are off of the premises of the possessor and it is mandatory that people clean up after their animals. Lower's beaches run along the Bay coast and are quite narrow compared to Cape May's. Follow directions to the Ferry terminal, then make a right rather than turn into the Ferry complex. The beach will be on your left as you drive north. Park where you can find a space and enjoy!|
Dogs are prohibited at Cape May Point State Park and the Cape May Migratory Bird Refuge in an effort to protect vulnerable chicks of the federally-threatened Piping Plovers and Least Terns.
View Dog Friendly Beaches in Cape May in a larger map
|Beach House Rentals||House||There are also pet-friendly rental houses available. Be sure to find out what type of pets the accommodation allows.|
|Beachcomber Camping Resort||Campground|
|Billmae Cottage||Guest House||Dogs|
|Blue Fish Inn||Motel||Dogs|
|Holly Shores||Campground||Dogs (2 per campsite)|
|Highland House||Guest House||Accepts "just about all pets"!|
|Lake Laurie RV Resort||Campground|
|Madison Avenue Beach Club||Motel||Dogs and cats. Ask about other types.|
|Marquis de Lafayette||Hotel||Domestic dogs and cats. Ask about other types.|
|Palace Hotel||Hotel||Dogs and cats. Ask about other types.|
|Victorian Lace Inn||Bed & Breakfast||Dogs are permitted in Seabee's Seaside Retreat and the Bantry Cottage.|
|White Dove Cottage||Bed & Breakfast||Dogs|
- First, keep your dog on a leash that is no more than 6’ long.
- You must clean up after your dog! Droppings must be disposed of in a sanitary manner (scooper, paper towel and plastic baggie are the tools for this task). Failure to do so could result in a $100 fine for each violation.
- Dogs shall be permitted only during the months of November, December, January, February and March. Dogs shall be kept on a leash at all times and be accompanied by their owner or caretaker.
- No dog shall be permitted on the Washington Street Mall, under any circumstances, whether or not controlled by a leash.
- Finally, one from the State of New Jersey: No dogs in the back of pick-up trucks. This no-no violates state laws governing cruelty to animals.
Several eateries have sidewalk seating where it's okay to bring your dog along. Try Zoe's at 715 Beach Avenue (next to the Beach Theatre). Aleathea's at the Inn of Cape May also offers dog-friendly seating on their patio. Others include the Ugly Mug, Rusty Nail, Gecko's, Tisha's, and the Blue Pig at Congress Hall.
Cape May Winery, Hawk Haven, and Natali Vineyards are all dog-friendly wineries which offer tastings year-round and outdoor seating during the summer.
Located on Lafayette Street near the corner of Broad, the dog park has a gazebo, toys, and a water source for when the dogs get thirsty during play. The park is double gated for easier entry and introduction. View park rules on the City website
Passes are available at City Hall. Please call the city Clerk's office at 609-884-9525 or visit them on the second floor.
There is a 24-hour emergency animal hospital in Linwood, New Jersey, about 45 minutes from Cape May. No appointment needed.
Red Bank Veterinary Hospital - Linwood
535 Maple Ave
Linwood, NJ 08221