News Release

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Updated Ordinance Keeps Dogs Leash Free on Hilton Head Island Beaches

October 6, 2022

Under an updated ordinance the Hilton Head Island Town Council passed on Tuesday, dogs will still be able to frolic on island beaches without a leash at designated times.

With the exception to let the dogs run freely along the shore, the ordinance aligns with an animal control ordinance Beaufort County adopted in April.  It keeps in place what is already on the books pertaining to dogs running off-leash on Hilton Head Island beaches.

“We know people love to bring their dogs to the beach and let them run loose, play in the ocean, and catch objects tossed to them – all while being under voice command. We wanted to make sure they still had the freedom to do that,” said Mayor John McCann.

Beaufort County updated its ordinance to match one the State of South Carolina recently adopted. Under the  county’s ordinance, pet owners are required to always have their animals on a leash when outdoors, whether on their private property or elsewhere.  

The Town’s ordinance, which goes into effect immediately, follows all other rules and regulations set forth in the county’s ordinance.

Here are the times when dogs are allowed on the beach:

For more information, visit the Town’s website at

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Nota: Para ver este comunicado de prensa en español u otros idiomas nativos, visite y elija el idioma apropiado de nuestro menú desplegable en el lado superior derecho de la página de inicio del sitio web.

Carolyn Grant, Communications Director