Dog walking on the Ashridge Estate

Two people and their dogs walk down a track

Ashridge is a beautiful, popular place to walk your dog and we welcome responsible dog walking on the estate. We have visitors of all kinds here: some on foot, some on wheels, and some on horseback, so we ask those of you bringing your four-legged friends to stick to our guidelines concerning dogs on the estate and help us keep Ashridge special for everyone.

Keep your dog under close control at all times

By close control we mean:
• either on a lead or walking to heel or just a few yards away from you when off lead
• 100% reliable on recall
• being able to get an ‘off lead’ dog back on its lead quickly and easily
• that your dogs do not bound up to other walkers, dogs, cyclists or horse-riders.

Your dog must be on a lead:
• if it's not ‘recall’ trained
• whenever you see horse-riders, cyclists or walkers approaching
• if someone approaching you has their dog on a lead – it’s often a sign to stay away
• if you are in an area where livestock are grazing
• when you are in car parks or near roads.

Dogs and other animals

Wild deer can be seen anywhere and at any time on the estate. It's therefore vital that you can control your dog if it is off the lead. When dogs chase deer, the consequences can be very serious. Apart from the stress and suffering to the deer, there's the risk of road traffic accidents which could injure the deer, your dog and the driver. Every year people have their cars written off due to deer being chased by dogs running out into the road. It's better to not take the risk so, if in doubt, keep the dog on a lead.

Also, it’s the law that all dogs on common or access land are on leads during the bird nesting season which runs from 1 March to 31 July each year. Dogs running through long grass will harm ground nesting birds and their chicks.

There are several areas of the estate where cattle and sheep graze. Please adhere to any notices relating to livestock in these areas. Where cattle are grazing, be prepared to let your dog off the lead in the unlikely event that the cattle chase it. Don't try to protect your dog from the cattle as you may be harmed.


Dog poo

To ensure that everyone has an enjoyable visit, please clear up after your dog everywhere on the estate. There are five poo bins along Monument Drive and around the visitor centre for you to use, otherwise please take your poo bags home with you rather than leaving bagged poo in the countryside.


Dogs at the café

To ensure that customers at the café have a pleasant experience, please keep your dog on a lead in the café. Please keep your dog off the benches and do not let them eat from the crockery.


Professional Dog Walkers

The maximum number of dogs that you can walk on the estate is six, as long as they are all well trained, known to the person walking them and are under close control. If the dogs are young, less well trained or unfamiliar with the person walking them, a smaller number will be appropriate.