Please keep dogs under close control at all times. The North Pennines has around 22,000 pairs of breeding wading birds. These birds nest on the ground and are therefore extremely vulnerable to disturbance by dogs.
Dogs on rights of way
Public footpaths, bridleways and other public rights of way provide many opportunities in the North Pennines for you to walk with your dog. The law protects your right to walk these paths at any time and also requires you to take simple steps to prevent harm to wildlife, farm animals and other people – please always follow the Countryside Code and the Moorland Visitors’ Code.
Dogs on access land
The rights on access land extend to walking with dogs. However, they must be on a fixed lead no more than 2m long between 1 March and 31 July to limit disturbance to ground nesting birds. They must also be on a short fixed lead at any time near livestock and nesting birds. Please follow local information signs.
On access land used for the rearing and shooting of grouse, there is likely to be a total exclusion on dogs. Visit the Natural England site or ring 0845 1003298 for current information.
Dogs may also be excluded for up to six weeks a year on land used for lambing and in areas important for ground nesting birds.
Dog restrictions do not apply to trained guide/hearing dogs and dogs on the land with the landowner’s permission.
Your rights to take dogs on public rights of way are unaffected by access land restrictions, but dogs must be kept under close control on public rights of way, preferably on a fixed short lead.
Dogs and cattle
Cattle may be inquisitive and approach you, especially if you have a dog. Avoid walking through a herd of cattle and NEVER come between a cow and her calf. If you have a dog with you and feel threatened by cattle, let the dog go and retreat.
In any other circumstances, dogs should be kept on a short lead near livestock.