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Visiting Arnside and Silverdale with your dog

View of people's knees, who are sitting on a bench. They have brought their dog for a walk, and the dog, a brown and white border collie, is waiting next to the bench.
Arnside Knott is a great place to visit with your four-legged friend | © National Trust Images/Annapurna Mellor

Walking your dog at Arnside and Silverdale can be a joy for both you and your pet. To help keep this special place safe for people and wildlife, we’ve created the Canine Code so that you and your dog can play a part. Find out the things to be aware of when walking your dog at Arnside and Silverdale, and the facilities available.

Our pawprint rating system

We’ve been working on making it easier for you to find out how dog-friendly your visit will be before you and your four-legged-friend arrive. To help with this, we've created a new pawprint rating system and given all the places in our care a rating. You can find this information in the National Trust members’ handbook.

Arnside and Silverdale is a two pawprint rated place.

These places have water bowls, dog bins and dog-friendly walks. You’ll be able to take your dog into some areas, but not everywhere. If there’s a food and beverage outlet, you can have a cup of tea with them, probably outside. Read on to discover exactly where you can take your dog.

Things to be aware of at Arnside and Silverdale

The Arnside and Silverdale area is home to several plants and animals which are sensitive to being disturbed. You can help to protect the wildlife here by keeping your dog under close control or, if your dog is especially lively or can be a bit unpredictable, by keeping them on a short lead.

Walking near livestock

Cows and sheep graze here throughout the year, which helps keep down scrub and encourage wildflowers to flourish. In spring, tenant farmers have pregnant ewes and lambs out in the field. Dogs off leads can cause harm to farm animals and this has an impact on farmers’ livelihoods.

The fear caused by just one dog allowed to run free in a field can be fatal for cows, sheep and lambs. You can reduce the risk of disturbing and injuring farm animals by keeping your dog on a short lead.

If you are approached by cattle with your dog, it is safer to let go of the lead and call your dog back when safe to do so.

A man walking two dogs at Arnside and Silverdale on a sunny evening. They are walking towards a wooden gate.
Dog walking at Arnside and Silverdale | © National Trust Images/Paul Harris

The Canine Code

We’ve worked with our partner Forthglade to come up with this Canine Code, which helps to make sure everyone can enjoy their day:

  • Keep them close: using a short lead helps to keep your dog from disturbing ground-nesting birds and farm animals. It's essential to use a short lead around sheep. But if cattle approach you, it's best to let your dog off the lead, and call them back when it's safe to do so.
  • Pick up the poo: please always clear up after your dog. If you can't find a bin nearby, take the poo bags home with you.
  • Watch the signs: keep an eye on local signs and notices wherever you're walking. They'll tell you if a beach has a dog ban, for instance, or if a path has been diverted, or if you're in an area where dogs can run off-lead.
  • Stay on the ball: remember that not everyone loves dogs, and some people fear them. So make sure your dog doesn't run up to other people, especially children.

Keeping control of your dog

Our definition of close or effective 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 or wildlife, or if you are asked to use one

Protecting local wildlife

We’re so lucky to care for such amazing wildlife and we do our best to ensure the safety of all species.

Unfortunately breeding wading birds at the coast often get disturbed by dogs running through the middle of them, causing them to leave their nests and chicks. This also happens in wet coastal fields where wading birds such as oystercatchers and curlews feed on winter fields.

Deer and hares can get chased and injured by dogs that are left to roam. Birds nesting in low shrubs at sites such as Jack Scout can also be disturbed in their nests by inquisitive dogs. Some interactions between dogs and wildlife can be fatal.

Please keep your dog under close control by your side or on a short lead.

Lyme disease – look out for ticks on your dog

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection which can be spread to humans and dogs by infected ticks. Ticks are tiny spider-like creatures found in vegetation such as long grass. They feed on the blood of birds and mammals, including humans and dogs.

Ticks that carry the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease are found throughout the UK and are particularly common in Arnside and Silverdale especially between March and October. Be sure to check yourself and your dog for ticks as soon as possible after walking in the area.

Facilities available for your dog

There are council bins for your dog's waste at Eaves Wood in the car park and at the woods at Castle Bank. There's also a Parish Council dog bin at the Lots in Silverdale. Bag it and bin it or take it home with you.

A Shetland pony in a field on the side of Arnside Knott

Discover more at Arnside and Silverdale

Find out how to get to Arnside and Silverdale, where to park, the things to see and do and more.

Our partners


We've partnered with natural pet food maker Forthglade so that you and your dog can get even more out of the special places we care for.

Visit website 

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