Best places for dog walking
Are you wondering where to take your dog next? Dog walking in the open countryside and along the rugged coastlines we care for is special for many reasons.
Watch your pup chase a ball, run across a beach and explore quiet woodland. Spending time together in nature is good for you too.
Our partner, Devon-based natural pet food maker Forthglade, has also come up with some top tips on winter dog walking so you and your four-legged friend can get even more out of your visit.
This three-year partnership is based on our shared love of open spaces and the special relationships between dogs and their owners.
A moment of peace
From acres of lush parkland to mysterious ruins surrounded by quiet countryside, we look after some incredible landscapes that you and your dog can explore.
Take a moment of peace. Listen to the sounds of busy wildlife, admire a spider's web sparkling with frost, and feel the wind on your face.
Get the most out of dog walking
We want to make sure you and your dog get the most out of the woodlands, fields, parkland, and beaches we look after. From improving dog-friendly trails to providing more waste bins and water bowls, we're taking steps to make sure you and your pup feel welcome.
In return, we ask you to keep the countryside a safe, healthy and enjoyable place for everyone.
We’ve teamed up with Forthglade to create the canine code, so you and your four-legged friend can help care for the places you love.
Take the lead: help reduce the chance of your pup disturbing wildlife by keeping them on a lead.
Scoop that poop: bag it and bin it to keep your favourite places beautiful.
Paws for thought: look out for information signs and take extra care on cliff paths.
Be on the ball: not everyone loves dogs, so keep them close by.
What you and your dog can expect
Many National Trust places offer:
- Water, drinking bowls and leads
- Dog-friendly cafes (some may be closed because of Covid 19 restrictions-please check below for the latest information on what's open).
- Maps and dog-walking trails
Assistance dogs are welcome inside all our houses, gardens, restaurants and shops.
Getting some exercise, soaking up natural light and enjoying the beauty of the natural world are all good ways to improve your wellbeing at this time of year. But going for a dog walk can feel like a bit of a chore when the weather is cold and the days are short.This is why we've teamed up with our friends at Forthglade to put together some top tips to help you get the most out of dog walking this winter.
A slow and steady start
Vigorous exercising of cold muscles can cause injuries, so it's best to keep your dog on the lead at the start of a walk. Avoid using ball flingers and instead get your dog to search for a treat in the long grass.
What do I need to take?
Treats, water and bowl, dog coat, towels, a collar light, reflective harness, a call-back whistle are all useful to take on a winter dog walk.
Dealing with bad weather
Only let your dog off the lead in bad weather if you are confident in their recall skills. A long training lead is a good option for a dog that gets easily distracted. Some owners use a GPS tracker or a recall whistle.
Planning your walk
Plan your dog walk carefully in bad weather and stick to more well-known routes, being extra careful in windy or icy conditions. Stick to paved areas or well-drained fields where possible.
Should I walk my dog every day?
Getting outside in winter is good for all of us. But dogs can benefit from a rest day, especially puppies that tend to find the world overwhelming. Get your dog to look for hidden food or teach them a new trick.