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Top Beach Dog Breeds

At A Glance

You no longer have to hunt for a beach companion.

We’ve got you covered with our list of top beach dog breeds to accompany you to the beach.

Last Updated on: Jul 08, 2022

While it’s a fallacy that all canines are characterized by the ability to swim, there are a few breeds who enjoy being in the water! Short-legged, long-bodied, and large-chested dogs are typically timid when in the water, but there are a number of dogs who love water.

Here’s a list of the top beach dog breeds who absolutely love swimming. This list even includes several breeds you may not have heard of.

custom oil-painted dog portraits by Poshtraits

labrador retriever sitting on the beach

Labrador Retrievers

The Labrador Retriever is a direct descendant of an older dog breed known as St. John’s water dog.  As the name suggests, this dog breed enjoyed spending time in the water.

Fishermen in Newfoundland, Canada relied on the breed to assist with fishing. These canines helped their human companions by retrieving equipment and recovering fish that escaped the nets or hooks.

Modern-day Labrador Retrievers don’t resemble their forefathers. However, they still have the ability to swim and dive.

Standard Poodle

Poodles are excellent swimmers and are often used to hunt waterfowl such as ducks and geese.

They do well during pheasant season and can retrieve wounded birds without killing or crushing them.

The conventional Poodle clip, with shaved legs and pom-poms on the ankle, may appear absurd to some, but there’s a legitimate reason behind their appearance.

When the dog is swimming in cool water, the hair keeps the joints warm. Shaved leg allow them to glide through the water without getting dragged down. Poodles make for excellent beach, lakeside, and creek dogs. They enjoy frolicking around with their humans and like to play fetch in the water.

They also enjoy training and other dog exercises thanks to their agility and intellect.

Irish water spaniel standing at the beach

Irish Water Spaniel

Irish Water Spaniels are water-loving gundogs that were bred to retrieve birds.

Also known as the jokester of the spaniel family, are extremely cute. They’ll follow after anything you toss with dangling a tongue and ear-to-ear grins.

Prepare to be kept on your toes by a clever and headstrong dog. And don’t forget to bring your beach towel!

Golden Retriever pup at the beach enjoying

Golden Retrievers

The list of top beach dog breeds would be incomplete without Golden Retrievers in it. This breed was meant to live near water, be it an ocean or a lake.

Golden retrievers are a friendly breed. They get along with everyone. This makes them ideal family pets to live and travel with.

Golden Retrievers enjoy exploring and rarely run out of energy. They want your attention but don’t demand so much of it that it becomes a chore.

The breed is quite intelligent and adapts well to both medium and high-intensity situations.

Also Read: Top 8 Friendliest Dog Breeds

Chesapeake Bay Retriever

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers

The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a big, strong dog with a lot of muscle. It has a thick, heavy coat that is slightly bigger and lengthier around the legs than the Labrador. The breed has a narrow and firm build, a smooth face and an oily appearance.

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers have strong webbed feet that help them paddle easily. They also have a water-resistant coat that shields them from the worst seasonal changes.

It’s no wonder that these dogs like spending time at the beach and in the water.

Lagotto Romagnolo at the beach

Lagotto Romagnolo

Lagotto Romagnolo, which means “lake dog from Romagna,” might be an interesting choice if you live near the water. Lagottos are affectionate, eager to impress, and trainable. This breed is also regarded to be the ancestor of all water dogs.

Genetically bred to hunt ducks, they are now coveted for their ability to track down truffles. In fact, it is the first purebred dog that’s been certified as a truffle hunter.

Lagottos do require a significant amount of grooming due to their curly coat, which can become knotted if they spend too much time in the water.

Newfoundland sitting at the beach


Dogs imported to England from the province of Newfoundland in the early 1800s gave birth to this breed. Fishermen used to carry these large dogs onto their fishing boats and teach them to rescue anyone who slipped into the Atlantic’s frigid waves as their bodies proved to be ideal for the job. They were also capable of carrying fishing nets ashore and pulling carts like pack horses.

Newfoundlands have thick water-resistant fur which prevents them from freezing in ice-cold water. A large body, partially webbed feet that aid in swimming and large floppy skin around their jaws that assists them to breathe easily are other key characteristics of this breed.

Swimming is a favorite pastime. If you reside close to the coast or have a swimming pool in your backyard, your pup will enjoy splashing around from time to time.

Portuguese Water Dog

Many Americans first heard of the Portuguese Water Dog when President Obama chose Bo as a White House family pet.

This breed is adept at diving for fish and retrieving damaged nets, as well as guarding boats in the port and relaying messages to fishermen. 

Due to their heritage, these dogs will jump into the water whenever they are provided an opportunity. They can also adjust to urban living very well if you keep them active by taking them out for a run or playing fetch daily.

If you have a house with a large enclosed backyard, a Portuguese Water Dog is a great choice.

Also Read: Top Guard Dog Breeds

owner playing with the dog at the beach

Whatever breed of dog you choose, it is essential to provide them with proper care and attention. Train them well, keep them strong and fit, and groom their coat regularly.

Which breed is your favorite in this list of the top beach dog breeds?


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Meet Paul, a devoted dog dad to the delightful French Bulldog, Cofi. With a flair for humor and a deep understanding of Frenchie quirks, Paul brings a lighthearted touch to his writings. His relatable stories and practical insights are a blend of laughter and valuable advice and resonate with fellow dog owners.

Through his words, Paul aims to celebrate the joys and challenges of being a dedicated pet parent, reminding you that life is simply better with a four-legged, snorting sidekick by your side.