Christmas is coming... and our thoughts turn to what pet owners can do to have an enjoyable time of year with their dogs this year. Check out our team’s top UK places to take dogs as well as alternative fun you and your dog can have closer to home.
Dog walking hotspots in the UK
If you and your dog enjoy getting out regardless of the weather, here are our top 5 suggestions for where you can go together this month:
The Lake District – This is one of the most stunning places all year round and pet owners travel for miles to take their dogs on the long, beautiful walks.
Cornwall – We often think of Cornwall as a summer destination, but winter is the real time to play as many of the beaches closed to dogs in summer are now open to welcome canine visitors.
Snowdonia National Park – Also famous for its beautiful scenery and long walks, Snowdonia is a beautiful place to take your canine friend for a ramble. Be extra careful in icy conditions though as driving there and walking can be tricky.
The Cairngorms - This mountain range in Scotland is a dog walker’s paradise; you can even go monster hunting with a cruise on Loch Ness!
Cotswolds Water Park – This is a beautiful place to walk dogs; they will need to be kept on a lead in most areas to protect the wildlife but it’s still worth the visit.
If you are planning to be out and about during December with your dog, our Bromsgrove vet nurses advise you to always plan ahead:
- Make sure you are familiar with the walking route you are taking and the daylight hours as these may vary across the UK – it's unwise to explore outside of daylight hours.
- Always take a first aid kit for both you and your canine partner.
- Ensure you have all the supplies you will need to keep dry and warm. Ruff & Tumble dry coats (and other available brands) can be helpful to warm your dog after their activity.
- Always consider your pet’s health and abilities, especially if they are older, before planning a new adventure.
Local dog friendly walks
If you don’t fancy going on a big adventure this close to Christmas, or are worried about the short days and potential bad weather, here are some ideas for entertaining your dog a little closer to home:
- Most local garden centres and an increasing number of cafes in Worcestershire are dog friendly and enable your dog to hang out with you while you shop, potter around, or relax with a hot drink and cake.
- You’ll be surprised how fun a trip to the pet shop can be for your dog – all their favourite smells and the chance to find a rogue dog biscuit on the floor? Paradise for dogs!
- Many National Trust locations and other attractions in the UK allow dogs in parts of their grounds if you want to walk them somewhere out of the ordinary.
Dog fun at home
The team at Clent Hills Vets have also got the perfect solution if you just fancy an indoors day or want some ideas to supplement your dog’s usual activities including tricks for treats, and timed laps around the house! Download these here:
Try these Winter Indoor Dog Activities
With Christmas around the corner, you might be thinking about Christmas gifts for your dog too. Our vet nurses recommend searching for dog boredom puzzles and toys. The more interactive the game can be, the better stimulation for your dog, especially in months where you may not be getting outdoors as much and need something to help fight boredom.
Scatter feeding, where you scatter your dog’s mealtime biscuits across the floor can make things more interesting, especially if you play hide and seek with some of their biscuits too!
Whether it’s getting out and about, games at home, or toys and gifts to put under the Christmas tree, it’s important to make sure your dog is safe and happy.
Have fun this season, from everyone at Clent Hills Vets in Bromsgrove, Hagley, and Rubery.