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Are Dogs Allowed on Miramar Beach? Local Rules Explained

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on April 22, 2024 by Dogster Team

miramar beach florida

Are Dogs Allowed on Miramar Beach? Local Rules Explained

You may be wondering whether you can bring your dog to Miramar Beach if you are planning a trip there with your furry friend. The answer is yes, but only if you meet certain criteria. Located in South Walton County, this beautiful beach offers time-limited, pet-friendly access, and some owners are welcome to bring their furry friends to enjoy a great time there.

However, it is important to note that there are different rules and regulations regarding pets on the beach, depending on whether you are a local or a visitor from out of town. Even for locals, before bringing their canine companion onto the sand of Miramar Beach, residents or property owners in the neighborhood must obtain a permit from the municipal clerk. The following article will provide everything you need to know about taking dogs to Miramar Beach.

Rules for Residents

Local laws and regulations stipulate that only residents with dog-on-beach permits are permitted to walk their leashed dogs along the beach. Another limitation is that this is only possible daily from 5 pm to 7 pm. Permits for dog walking on Miramar Beach must be obtained from the county clerk every year. Every dog permit is valid from August 1st to July 31st of the following year. It is only possible to obtain a permit if you own real estate in Walton County or are a permanent resident.

a dog walked by its owner on a beach
Image Credit: Juice Verve, Shutterstock

What You Need to Apply for a Permit

If you wish to obtain a dog-on-beach permit in Miramar Beach, the following documents will need to be submitted to the city:

  • The application form should be complete, including information on your veterinarian and whether your dog has been spayed or neutered.
  • A rabies vaccination certificate for the property owner or permanent resident listed on the application whose name matches the owner’s name.
  • Documents that prove your residence or ownership include deeds, licenses, tax receipts, utility bills, lease agreements, and voter registrations.
  • You must show proof of 51% controlling interest or obtain written consent from co-owners if an LLC or company owns your property.
  • Enclose the fee of $40—which is the same for a first-time application or a renewal

It’s crucial to ensure that you have all these documents ready when applying for a dog-on-beach permit. Without them, your application may be denied. If you’re successful, you can elect to pick up your permit from Walton County or have it mailed to you.

Why Are Tourists and Visitors Banned from Bringing Their Dogs?

Many local governments have laws and regulations that limit or prohibit certain activities on public beaches. Public safety, environmental protection, and ensuring everyone’s enjoyment of the beach are typically some of the reasons behind these laws and regulations. In the case of Miramar Beach, tourists and visitors are prohibited from bringing their dogs to the beach in order to maximize everyone’s safety and enjoyment. While locally owned dogs are allowed on the beach for a short window every day, limiting the number of dogs involved may be an attempt by Walton County to decrease safety hazards from arising—such as dog bites or dog attacks—as well as conflicts with other beachgoers who may not be comfortable with dogs.

Tourists and visitors may also be prohibited from bringing dogs to the beach to protect the environment and preserve the natural habitat. The local Walton County government may want to limit the use of dogs on the beach to prevent the disturbance of wildlife and damage to the ecosystem. Likely, the reasons for prohibiting tourists and visitors from bringing their dogs to Miramar Beach are multifaceted and tailored to the specific circumstances and needs of the local community.

miramar beach florida
Image By: Matthew T. Johnson, Shutterstock

Other Recreational Options for Dogs Near Miramar Beach

There are a couple of leashed-dog-friendly activities available in and around Miramar Beach itself, including The Village of Baytowne Wharf and Grand Boulevard Farmers’ Market. Additionally, there are many other dog-friendly activities nearby, such as Crab Island Cruises in Destin, Nancy Weidenhamer Dog Park in Destin, Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park in Niceville, and the Air Force Armament Museum.

The best thing to do is to confirm whether or not a business or organization allows dogs before bringing one in since policies vary depending on the organization. You may find that some places have specific rules or restrictions related to dogs, such as a size or breed restriction, or that dogs must always be leashed in public areas.

What Happens If I Ignore the Rules and Bring My Dog Anyway?

If you ignore the rules and bring your dog to Miramar Beach (or any other beach where dogs are not allowed), you could face legal consequences, such as being asked to leave the beach, receiving a citation, or a fine. Walton County warms that violating any section of the Miramar Beach ordinance is considered a civil infraction with a maximum penalty of $500.00. Pet owners intending to breach the law should be aware that their pets may also be impounded, and in certain circumstances, they may have to make a mandatory court appearance.

Respecting the Law

Many visitors regard these types of laws as unfair. However, whenever you visit a public beach, you should follow local rules and regulations and respect the measures that are in place for the safety of everyone. Non-compliance with these restrictions can result in legal consequences, create safety hazards, and disrupt others’ enjoyment. Any time you bring your dog to a beach, it’s a good idea to confirm the relevant ordinances and regulations with local authorities in advance.



In conclusion, dogs are allowed on Miramar Beach, but only if you are a resident or real estate owner with a permit. Permit-holding residents must follow all posted rules and regulations and keep their dogs on leashes at all times to ensure the safety of beachgoers and their canine companions. For more information about pet permits and leash requirements, contact Walton County. Pet owners should take responsibility for their animals, keep them under control, and clean up after them to keep Miramar Beach clean and safe for everyone to enjoy.

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Featured Image Credit: Norm Lane, Shutterstock

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