The Ramblers position on dogs on walks is that....
- The decision on whether or not dogs (other than registered assistance dogs) are permitted on a Ramblers walk has been devolved to areas, then to groups and then to individual walk leaders themselves; and we encourage groups to periodically review their policy on dogs.
- In accordance with the 2010 Equality Act registered assistance dogs are permitted on group walks. However, in some circumstances the walk may not be suitable and it would not be safe for a walker with an assistance dog. For example, some terrain might be too challenging for an assistance dog. If you would like to walk with your assistance dog, we recommend that you get in touch with the group in advance to discuss the nature of the walk. If the walk isn’t suitable, our volunteers will discuss with you other ways you can walk with the group. For example, bringing a sighted companion (who does not need to be a member).
- In terms of individual walks, we encourage groups to provide as much detail as possible on their walk listings so that prospective walkers have all the information they need in advance to judge whether the walk is likely to be suitable and enjoyable for them. This can include a tag as to whether a walk is dog-friendly, a statement about whether dogs other than registered assistance dogs are welcome, and contact details for prospective walkers to find out more about the walk.
- We are very conscious of the need for dogs to be kept under control particularly around livestock and provide advice to this effect on our website at http://www.ramblers.org.uk/advice/safety/dog-walkers.aspx and at https://www.ramblers.org.uk/advice/rights-of-way-law-in-england-and-wales/animals-and-rights-of-way.aspx
Finally, we are keen to encourage groups to run a diverse walks programme and include some walks of different types to appeal to a wide range of walkers, whether those walks be child-friendly, dog-friendly, pushchair-friendly etc. in order to meet local needs and local considerations. This allows groups to run a programme that fits the interests of their members and attract new walkers.