Del Mar approves new rules for off-leash dog  walking

Lilly, left, looks at another dog at Dog Beach in Del Mar last year.
(Hayne Palmour IV / San Diego Union-Tribune)

Dog owners will be able to walk their pets off-leash in certain areas of Del Mar's beach in the early morning hours under a change to the rules approved by the Del Mar City Council.

The council approved the change at its meeting on Monday, Aug. 6, on a 4-0 vote with Councilwoman Ellie Haviland absent. The ordinance will come back to the council for a second and final reading on Sept. 4.

Currently, the city has divided its beach into three zones with different rules regarding on- and off-leash dog walking. In the city's North Beach area, from 29th Street to the Solana Beach border, dogs are allowed on-leash during the summer, and off-leash from the day after Labor Day through June 15.

Under the new rules, dogs will be allowed off-leash from dawn to 8 a.m. year-round in this area.

The new rules also call for dogs to be allowed off-leash from dawn to 8 a.m. between 29th and 25th streets, only in the off-season from the day after Labor Day through June 15.

From 29th Street south to Powerhouse Park, dogs are not allowed in the summer and are allowed on-leash in the off-season. Finally, from Powerhouse Park south to Torrey Pines State Beach, dogs are allowed on-leash year-round.

A staff report estimated it will cost $2,500 to update signs with the new rules.