Coast KZN

16 Jan 2020

Beach access for dogs lifted in Durban

Lauren Walford (Berea Mail) Picture: Dogs weren't allowed on the beachfront over the festive season.

Ethekwini Municipality has assured dog owners that the beachfront near the new promenade extension will once again be open to dogs from 15 January. This comes after a slew of complaints were posted on social media sites over the holiday season when, in December, the city prohibited dogs from using the beach at Vetch’s.


One of the many pet owners who was turned away from the beach with her dog Tokyo was Morningside resident Traci Oosthuizen. She said she visited the beach with her dog and son Ryder once a week, and was shocked to discover the beach had been closed to dogs.

“I am off work on Mondays and visit the beach with Ryder and Tokyo who loves it. It is such a wonderful beach for the dog to walk on. I came down in mid-December and saw the signs prohibiting dogs on the beach. I had heard about it on a dog group I follow. It is ridiculous as for at least 10 years this has always been a dog beach,” she said.

Oosthuizen said dog owners had been advised to go to Virginia or Umhlanga beaches, but this was too far away.

“It is unfair that there was no other local beach available for dogs to enjoy. We need a space nearby that feels safe to go to with our kids and fur kids. So many people I know have complained. I also question the logic that dogs are allowed on the promenade, but not the beach, it doesn’t make sense,” she said.

Responding to queries, eThekwini Municipality’s spokesperson Msawakhe Mayisela, said: “The limitation of dogs on Vetch’s beach and the new Point Lifeguard tower (Promenade area), was only due to the increase in the volume of people on the beaches and the high increase of bathers. It should be noted that the beaches open at 6am and the lifeguards have to prepare the beaches with their stations and equipment and ensure that the beach sand is clean as possible for tourists and bathers alike. To this end, as the safety of the bathers must be the city’s highest priority, the limitation of dogs walking on leashes along the new beachfront, in front of the Point Lifeguard Tower, has been restricted for the festive season.”