Now that the clocks have gone forward, and the vernal equinox has passed, we can officially start to look forward to the summer!
With each passing week the days are getting perceptibly longer, and as the trees blossom and the weeds begin to grow again, we leave winter behind for another year. With slowly increasing temperatures and longer evenings, we’ll be spending more time outdoors, enjoying the garden with our pets. Rabbits are always happy to help keep the dandelions in check, and who doesn’t know a cat that takes great interest in a newly dug-over patch of soil?! Even those of us who are occasionally overcome by the tedium of walking the dog in the wind and rain will no doubt find a new spring in our steps in the coming months!
Any why not combine the health benefits and sociable side of dog walking with a spot of fundraising? More and more charities and community groups are organising sponsored dog walks to raise valuable funds and raise awareness of the great work that they do – a quick online search will no doubt reveal several options within easy reach for you.
Registration is open for The 2015 Great North Dog Walk, now in its 25th year and current holder of the Guinness World Record for the largest dog walk, with 22,742 canine participants in 2014. If you live in the South Shields area it’s sure to be a great day out.
Responsible dog walkers will always follow the Countryside Code, which sets out useful advice for enjoying the outdoors responsibly:
- Keep your dog on a lead, or keep it in sight at all times
- Ensure that your dog does not stray off the path
- The access rights that normally apply to open country and registered common land require dogs to be kept on a short lead between 1 March and 31 July, to help protect ground nesting birds, and all year round near farm animals
- At the coast, there may also be local restrictions for dogs to be kept on a short lead during the bird breeding season, and to prevent disturbance to flocks of resting and feeding birds during other times of year
- A farmer may shoot a dog that is attacking or chasing farm animals without being liable for compensation. However, if cattle or horses chase you and your dog, it is safer to let your dog off the lead and let it run away
- Everyone knows how unpleasant dog mess is and it can cause infections, so always clean up after your dog responsibly –‘ bag it and bin it’. Make sure your dog is wormed regularly to protect it, other animals and people
Please note: The Ralph Site is not affiliated with the third-party organisations in any of the links shared here, and the views, ideas and suggestions expressed in this and other blogs are simply shared with the intention of helping you, our friends, take care of the special animals in your lives.