Holidays are a great way to spend time with your dog, but first, you need to ensure your dog would like the holiday as much as you. That involves thinking about the perfect location for both you and your furry friend, as well as things like their age and health. If you’re ever unsure if you should take your dog on an active holiday, you can always check with your vet to make sure that your dog is fit and healthy to travel. You’ll want your dog to be able to keep up with the sorts of activities you’ll be doing away.

Taking your pet on holiday can be a rewarding experience for the whole family. Many like to take their dog on holiday so that they don’t have to worry about them staying somewhere where they may become stressed or unhappy.

Dog-Friendly Holidays Gosport

Gosport is an ideal location for you and your furry friend as it has many walking and cycling trails as well as lovely beaches to walk along. Dog-friendly holidays in the UK are full of opportunities and great landscapes. Gosport is just a ferry away from Portsmouth, which makes both of these locations very popular for dog-friendly holidays.  

Dog Walks in Gosport

Gosport is a special location for dog walks as you can explore 24 miles of waterfront that boasts safe panoramic beaches, naval heritage and historic trails. As you can imagine the beach means that you get to view the marine across the Solent, to the Isle of Wight. You can take a 3km historic self-guided walk through Gosport. The Tourist Information Centre is located within the bus station and they’ll have all the information you need if you haven’t already planned out your trip.

Stokes Bay

Stokes Bay is located just along the shore, and it is known for its amazing flora and many varieties of birds. Dogs are not allowed in signed controlled areas between the 1st May – 30th September. 

The pebble beach overlooks the Solent and Isle of Wight. There is always something to see, such as the dinghies, yachts and ocean liners. Sometimes you’ll even see tankers and container ships as well as the occasional impressive aircraft carrier. There are facilities such as a cafe and additional grass area where you can take your dog all year round.

Fort Gilkicker

Fort Gilkicker is a historic Palmerston fort that is located at the eastern end of Stokes Bay, Gosport, Hampshire. It has paid parking if you’re looking to drive there and once you’re there you can take advantage of the great off-lead areas. There is a large open area for your dogs to run free, but if you continue past the Fort, there is an additional area that opens up again and borders the golf course that you can also go to. Just return on the same path or come back along the shore to return to the entrance. There is water available on routes and of course toilets for you. Gosport Borough Council asks that one person walks only 4 dogs at a time. 

Alver Valley Country Park 

You can also spend a little time exploring the Alver Valley Country Park that has everything from woodland, lakes, ponds and views of the River Alver. The river runs through the park so there’s plenty of opportunities to enjoy it. There are often sightings of reptiles, foxes, deers and a variety of birdlife so try and keep your eye out while venturing around. It’s a lovely walk for dogs who love to swim, but you can also walk up and over the grass fields or walk through the wooded area.

Wildgrounds Nature Reserve

Within the same area is the Wildgrounds Nature Reserve. It is one of the few remaining unspoilt woodland pastures in South East Hampshire and has an area of around 67 acres. You have two options at the Wildgrounds, you can take the “red” or “green” trail, both of the trails start at Middle Barn so you can even choose when you get there. It is an amazing adventure for both small (and larger) children and dogs. In poor weather, you might want to consider boots but there are paths for the less adventurous.

You can download the Wildgrounds Nature Reserve trails and map here.

Things to Consider before & during your holiday

Taking your dog on holiday will be a wholesome experience, but you’ll need to be prepared to get the most out of the experience.

 Things to consider before your dog-friendly holiday:

  • Check the weather forecast before you go. If it’s going to be hot, your dog will need protection to prevent heatstroke. If it’s forecast to rain, consider bringing them something to keep them warm.
  • Let the place you’re staying know you’re bringing a dog. That way they can get any facilities your dog may need before you arrive if they aren’t there already. 
  • Do a little research into the area to see where you can take your dogs such as the walks mentioned above, dog-friendly pubs and cafes.
  • Remember to take their toys and anything that could be comforting, such as their blanket if they are prone to get stressed.

Things to consider during your dog-friendly holiday:

  • Try to keep some similarities to your usual routine. This can be difficult, but if you can keep to the same food and toilet times, this can help your dog adapt to the other changes going on.
  • Ensure you keep your dog on the same diet. Any sudden changes to their diet can cause an upset stomach, and sometimes even a trip to the vets.
  • Give your dog some time to explore their new surroundings once you reach the place you’re staying at. 
  • Don’t leave them alone until they’re comfortable with their surroundings.
  • During all the fun, excitement and long walks, ensure your dog gets enough time to rest and recover. 

How to keep your dog safe on holiday:

  • Only let your dogs off the lead in safe areas, such as some of the areas mentioned within the walking routes above. Everything will be new to your dog so even the most well-behaved ones could take a wrong turn or wander into the road.
  • If you go for a walk at night, make sure your dog has an LED collar or light attached to them so that other pedestrians and cars can see your dog.
  • Keep a check on your dog’s behaviour throughout the whole holiday. If you see changes to their behaviour it could mean they’re irritated, bored, stressed or ill.

If you’re looking for a holiday that’s full of nature for you and your pet, Gosport has a lot to offer. Whether you’re looking for an escape from city life or just a change of scenery, there’s definitely enough daily activities to choose from. 



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