The team from Bath Vets suggest some of Bath’s best dog walks, plus a few precautions to take along the way
With Autumn upon us, many families are feeling that they have missed out on the summer that they had planned. We are extremely fortunate to live in such a beautiful part of the world, and Bath is extremely dog-friendly, so now is the perfect time for families to get outside in our local countryside on some picturesque walks with your doggy companion and try and make the most of the last warmth of the year.
Some of the Bath Vets team’s favourite walks include the Bath Skyline, which starts at Bathwick Hill and is a six-mile walk ending up at Sham Castle, an 18th century folly commissioned by Ralph Allen to provide local employment. The trail provides stunning views across the whole city. The well-known Rainbow Woods is part of the Skyline walk and is not only dog-friendly but also has a natural children’s play area making this walk fun for the whole family. There are a few different trails to follow around the woods, depending on whether you want a long or short route.
Bushey Norwood, which is situated next to Bath Cats and Dogs Home, comprises a couple of fields that are well away from the main road and therefore suitable for letting your dogs off their leads. Time off the lead allows dogs to exercise and play in ways they can’t in your home or on-leash, allowing them to develop more confidence by getting to explore independently, problem solving, making (hopefully) good choices and interacting more naturally with other dogs.
For the more adventurous amongst you, Beechwood, which can be found off a no-through road called Beechwood Road in Combe Down Village, is a tougher walk that encompasses woods and a valley, coming out at Tucking Mill Viaduct. From there you can follow a woodland path to Midford, pick up a cycle path and walk back to Combe Down with a steep rise at the end via 66 steps.
For a longer route, there is a walk through the Two Tunnels into Bath or a field walk to end up at Southstoke Village. The Two Tunnels route leaves Lyncombe Vale and heads underground beneath high ground. Combe Down Tunnel is the longest cycling and walking tunnel in the UK but be aware the cycle path gets quite busy at the weekends so it is recommended to keep dogs on leads here.
When walking with your dog, be prepared for all eventualities. Always carry water and ideally a tick remover and a pet first aid kit in case of any mishaps. Ensure your dog is up to date with their prescription parasite treatment, including tick prevention, because our local tick season extends well into Autumn and there is a high prevalence of sheep and deer. Some other Autumn dog hazards to be cautious of include conkers, acorns, toadstools and mushrooms which are toxic to dogs, seek veterinary advice if your dog eats any of these
Bath Vets wish you, and your doggy companions, hours of happy walking in our beautiful countryside!