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Visiting Sizergh with your dog

Visitors walking their dogs in the garden at Sizergh, Cumbria
A visitor walking their dog on the Sizergh estate | © National Trust Images/John Millar

With 1,600 acres to explore, the Sizergh estate is the perfect place to step out with your dog. Find out where you can go with your pup, and take a look at some dog-friendly walking routes.

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.

Sizergh is a two pawprint rated place.

Dogs are welcome here, but they aren't allowed into the formal gardens or house. Read on to discover exactly where you can take your dog.

Where can I take my dog?

We love dogs at Sizergh, and they are welcome on a lead in the shop, café and wild play area, as well as on the wider estate. The estate is the perfect place to let your pup burn off some energy – just please make sure they're kept on a lead wherever there's livestock or nesting birds (including around the wetland at Park End Moss).

Where can’t I take my dog?

Only assistance dogs are allowed in the house and formal gardens.

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

Which walks would you recommend?

The circular route to Park End Moss is almost three miles long, and will take you through historic parkland and ancient woodlands to wetland that is a haven for birds.

If you love spotting butterflies and wildflowers, why not try the wildlife walk? The route is 2.5 miles long and will take you past a spectacular veteran ash tree.

A free map detailing these walks and other routes is available from reception – just ask when you get here.

A family stand looking across a lake with Sizergh Castle in the background

Discover more at Sizergh

Find out when Sizergh is open, how to get here, things to see and do and more

Our partners

Forthglade

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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