Once upon a time, I could walk 50 feet down a beach without stopping every three seconds.
If I wanted to, I could lie on the sofa for eight hours and binge watch a new series.
I could eat cheese without guilt.
Friends, those were the sad, empty days before I became a Dog Person
As a dog person I know that a chunk of cheese shared is a better, tastier chunk of cheese. Walks are better when you stop to admire gateposts and railings. And who needs to lie on a sofa when you could be out, walking your dog?
Since we’ve had Teddy, I’ve got to know our neighbourhood so much better. I can tell you the very best spots of the beach to visit, and where you can let your dog off the lead. I know the local woodland and nature parks and even the new Bark Park at the holiday park.
If you’re in Lancashire, let me tell you that Lytham St Annes is the BEST place to take your dog in the sunny day.
We often park close to the station and take a walk through Witch Wood. This is a strip of land that runs down the back of Lytham, that was donated to the town. Now it’s a lovely woodland walk with loads of birds. Teddy also is very keen on the large number of squirrels that can be chased here.
From the woods, it’s a short walk down to the promenade. Lytham is unusual in that there are huge swathes of beach and dunes where your dogs can run. Lytham has mud flats but as you walk towards St Annes, the landscape gives way to sand dunes.
This part of town is always a bit of a doggie social club. Teddy loves racing up and down the dunes, and if she can find a friend to race, so much the better.
Another 15 minutes’ walk and you’re at the beach proper. St Annes beach has some of the widest sand I’ve ever seen. It’s the most perfect spot for Teddy to run, and we always finish up with a dip in the sea, to wash off the worst of the mud and sand.
No matter how hectic my day, this walk calms me. There’s fresh air, sand to walk in, and gorgeous views. I always, always find myself thinking how lucky we are to live here.
Now, it has to be said that Teddy is not fussy about the weather she goes out in. Rain and hail just add extra interest to her days.
But MY favourite days are our summer days together. During the summer months I’m far more likely to think to myself, “just ten more minutes before we go home”.
That said, our outdoor adventures do present some — challenges. My dog is a dirt and death detective. If there’s a rotten fish corpse to be found within a half mile radius, she’s there. One day this summer Ted managed to get a fish corpse actually wrapped around her muzzle. Six people tried to chase her while Teddy ran around with a look of mad triumph in her eyes.
Living by water means there are always potential bugs and hazards. I’m very conscious of things like dead trees, standing water, and discarded materials in open land. Not to mention the very rich pickings to be found in the park after all those picnics. So, it’s a given that we always have dog insurance.
If you’re still shopping for pet insurance, you might like to know that Petplan is one of only a few providers to offer genuine “lifetime” policies. Petplan also works with more than 1,200 animal rehoming charities in the UK and has raised over £11m through a charitable trust to help fund animal-related causes.
Petplan’s Top Tips for Pet Summer Safety
The Petplan website also has a brilliant hub offering pet summer safety tips for dogs, that’s packed with great information. If you’re wondering how hot is TOO hot to walk your dog, or whether that picnic pork pie might be unsafe, this is the site for you.
Some of our favourite tips from the site are below, but do check the hub for more info:
- If you’re having a BBQ, did you know that it’s not just bones you should keep away from your dog? While corn isn’t toxic, the centre of corn cobs can be hard for dogs to digest, and potentially can cause dangerous obstructions
- Often, dogs can lose their appetites in hot weather – tempt them by freezing their regular food in ice cube trays to make pet-friendly cold treats
- Did you know that there are now dog-friendly yoga classes for humans and their pets? It’s called “doga” and this might be the best new thing I’ve learned all summer. Apparently it deepens the bond, and is great for calming.
Sponsored Post: This post is in conjunction with Petplan. However, all opinions are my own. Especially the one about “doga”.