Skip to content

Visiting the Farne Islands with your dog

Visitor with dog at the Northumberland Coast, Northumberland
Visitor with dog at the Northumberland Coast | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Dogs, including assistance dogs, are not allowed on Inner Farne or Staple Island, due to the very sensitive nature of the seabird and grey seal colonies that call the Farne Islands home. Find out more about this, and where else you can take your dog on the Northumberland Coast.

Where else can you take your dog?

The Farne Islands are a very special place, home all year round to a colony of grey seals. During the breeding season, thousands of seabirds, including puffins and Arctic terns, come back to the islands to raise their chicks.

The wildlife here is very vulnerable to disturbance and so dogs, including assistance dogs, are not allowed onto the islands at any time.

Some boat operators allow dogs to remain on the boat whilst their humans visit Inner Farne. Subject to the boat operators discretion, owners may be allowed to remain on the boat with their dogs. All visitors on a landing trip are required to obtain a wrist band from the National Trust trailer on Seahouses Harbour before they sail, please note that visitors are not able to land on Inner Farne without one. Please contact the individual boat operators for more information about their dog policy.

Back on the mainland, there are many stretches of beautiful beaches along the Northumberland Coast that your four-legged friend can enjoy, and the National Trust shop in Seahouses will have a refreshing bowl of water outside.

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
A visitor photographing birds on the Farne Islands, Northumberland

Discover more on the Farne Islands

Find out how to get to the Farne Islands, 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 

You might also be interested in

Visitor with dog at the Northumberland Coast, Northumberland

Visiting the Northumberland Coast with your dog 

Dogs can really stretch their legs on the long sandy beaches of the Northumberland Coast. Find out what facilities are available, where you can walk your dog and seasonal restrictions.

Two walkers with dogs on a grassy area next to a stone bridge, crossing a broad, shallow river

Dog-friendly places to visit 

Discover the best places for a dog walk, from coastal adventures and dramatic mountains to more leisurely walks near you. Plus find information on dog-friendly cafés and read our Canine Code.

Two people leaning against a wall, with a fluffy golden-brown dog looking at a packet of treats

Visiting National Trust places with your dog 

If you’re bringing your dog to the places we care for, here’s information on the Canine Code and pawprint rating system to plan your visit.

A happy spaniel walking with its owner on the grass at at Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire

Dog-friendly places in the North East 

Discover some great places to walk your dog in the North East, from beaches to woodland trails, and the facilities that are available there.

Dog enjoying a Forthglade treat at Attingham Park, Shropshire

How we're working with Forthglade for dog-friendly visits 

We've partnered with natural pet food maker Forthglade to create the Dogs Welcome project, helping you and your dog to get the most out of the places in our care.