Unless you've been living under a rock for the last couple of years, you'll have noticed some exciting developments in the world of dogs - namely, the fact that more and more venues now provide dog-friendly options.
With the spring on the way and the weather looking up, you'll no doubt be itching to get out of the house and enjoy some time with your pet. Check out these ways the world is becoming a heck of a lot more friendly to dogs and their loving owners.
The trend for dog-friendly cafes originated in the US, but it has since gone global, with cafes springing up everywhere from New Zealand to Europe.
The UK is, as you might imagine, a hotspot too, thanks to the sheer number of dog-lovers in the country. Dog-friendly pubs and cafes join a host of zones, including beaches and parks, that now offer pooch-specific options.
Take the “puppacino,” for instance, - a dog-friendly frothy treat designed to emulate its human counterpart. Many restaurants now also offer menu items that would make you or I feel nauseous but that dogs love to woof down, including bacon biscuits, fish-based beverages, and beef sodas.
More generally, there are some particularly dog-friendly locations in the UK - places where your pooch can run wild, enjoy the fresh air and meet other animals.
Here are some top dog-friendly destinations and why dogs love them.
Snowdonia: Snowdonia is Wales' most magnificent wilderness and home to Mount Snowdon, the tallest peak in Wales. The challenging terrain and beautiful scenery are bound to keep your dog interested.
The Lake District: The Lake District has it all for dogs: the scenery, open space, and opportunities for long walks. And, as you might expect, there are plenty of opportunities for paddling too!
The Yorkshire Dales: The Yorkshire Dales not only provides a beautiful wilderness for your dog to explore but also excellent access for families and wheelchair users. Plus, the area is famed for its dog-friendly accommodation.
Not so long ago, dog owners really struggled to find places where they could take their four-legged friends on holiday. You either had to make do with a caravan site or forget about it.
But now the situation is changing. With the UK pet industry worth more than £2.7 billion per year, major travel vendors are all now seeing the benefits of allowing owners to bring their animals with them, even if they require a little extra effort. A growing segment of British hotels now offers fluffy pet beds, vacuum cleaners for pet hair, and air fresheners to keep things fragrant. There's a range of travel products around to help your dog feel comfortable too.
Holiday cottage providers are in on the act too, with many now explicitly allowing users to search for “pet-friendly” venues. Estimates suggest that British hotels could increase their revenues by a whopping 30 per cent if they permitted dogs.
So what are you waiting for? Don't sit around in the house with your pooch this spring. Check out some of the many excellent dog-friendly venues and activities around the country and give your pooch a treat. And remember, #gingerted as we love to see your adventures!