Time is a precious commodity for many hardworking people today, particularly for those who have children and pets, as well as jobs.
This means you really want to make the most of weekends and bank holidays, and this often takes the form of fun and enjoyable day trips. However, as a responsible dog owner, you’ll also be concerned about leaving your four-legged friend unattended for too long, both for practical and emotional reasons. This means you can end up seriously curtailing or limiting your expeditions out of consideration for your pet.
There are a number of ways to deal with this, but one of the best (and most enjoyable for your dog) is to incorporate them into your trips. This puts an end to having to rush home to let your pooch out, walk them, feed them, or make sure they don’t think they’ve been abandoned. To that end, here are a list of suggestions, as well as advice about dog-friendly visitor attractions across the country:
While a busy tourist beach may not be the ideal spot for an excited pup with energy to burn, there are plenty of secluded stretches that give them plenty of room to stretch their legs. There may not be as many man-made attractions at these locations, but sun, sea and sand should be more than enough to keep human members of the family amused, particularly if buckets, spades and swimming costumes are on hand.
Ideal spots for this kind of day out can be found on the west coast of Scotland, the Norfolk sand dunes and along the windswept Northumberland coastline.
A long ramble with the whole family is a great way to get some quality time while also keeping fit and healthy. There are many booklets available detailing walks in most areas across the UK. Many of these are circular, meaning you don’t have to worry about getting back to the car. Country pubs often welcome well-behaved dogs (ring ahead and check), which can be used as a base point and source of refreshments. It can also operate as a great reward for those with tired feet, or even a bribe for more reluctant members of the party.
While you’re out and about, make sure you keep the countryside code in mind. This simply means closing all gates behind you, and keeping your dog on a lead, particularly when there are farm animals around.
Stately homes and gardens
A number of stately homes welcome dogs in their gardens, and a few even offer basic comforts such as water bowls and a comfortable area to tie up your pooch while you explore inside. While it’s best to focus on the garden, having an alternative to leaving your dog in the car (especially on hot summer days) can make a visit that much more viable.
The famous Chatsworth House in Derbyshire is one such dog-friendly stately home, and English Heritage provide a full list of their sites that admit dogs online. If you’re uncertain, most attractions are more than happy to confirm their policy either online or on the phone.
If you don’t want to be parted for even some of your trip, then picturesque ruins such as the Abbotsbury Abbey remains in Dorset are the best choice.
Written by: Hannah Dyball