Visiting Hatchlands Park with your dog

Dog walker and dogs in a meadow

It’s always wonderful to share a walk and few companions are as grateful for a wander in the great outdoors as our four-legged friends. Encounter wagging tails on woodland trails and padding paws in our wide open parkland.

At over 400 acres, the majority of which is dog friendly, Hatchlands is an ideal venue to walk your four-legged friends. Find trail guides and more information below. 

Where can my dog go?

Dogs are welcome, under close control, in designated parkland areas including along all our park walks. Dogs are also welcome outdoors in the courtyard where you'll find water bowls dotted around for refreshment on a hot day and, when it's open, there's indoor seating for pups and for their humans in the Coach House Café.

We use livestock to graze our parkland all year round. Different herds of both sheep and cattle can be found in different areas of the park at different times of year. To stay informed about where livestock are grazing, please look out for the information signs at each field gate. It's essential that all dogs are kept on leads in fields containing livestock. Please be aware that sheep will be contained by electrified stock fencing.

Our definition of close control is:

  • Being able to recall your dogs in any situation at the first call
  • Being able to clearly see your dog at all times (not just knowing they have gone into the undergrowth or over the crest of the hill). In practice this means keeping them on a footpath if the surrounding vegetation is too dense for your dog to be visible.
  • Not allowing them to approach other visitors without their consent
  • Having a lead with you to use if you encounter livestock, wildlife or you are asked to use one

Where can my dog not go?

Assistance dogs only are welcome in the Kitchen Café at the top of the courtyard, the house, the more formal gardens close to the house and our children's natural adventure area. Please do not tie dogs up and leave them unattended outside these areas.

What do I need to be aware of?

  • Please keep to designated dog areas indicated by the way-markers
  • Access to our parkland for dog walking is restricted to our property opening times
  • Please only allow well-controlled dogs off their leads 
  • Please do not allow your dog to worry our donkeys or livestock
  • It's essential that all dogs are kept on leads in fields containing livestock
  • Please be aware that sheep will be contained by electrified stock fencing
  • Should cattle start to approach you, we recommend you let your dog off the lead
  • Where there are calves, cattle may be very protective
  • Please always pick up after your dog
  • Poop-scoop bags are available to pick up at reception, just ask us for one
  • There is a poop-scoop bin close to reception and another just outside the cobbled courtyard
  • Please, under no circumstances should you discard poop-scoop bags in the park

Dog-friendly trails

To make sure everyone has an enjoyable day please follow the National Trust's Canine Code: 

  • 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