Where do dog owners really want to take their dog in the uk?

Posted by Argos, 1 September 2022, last updated 22 September 2023.

It is well known the UK is a nation of dog lovers, and with many of us worrying about the increasing cost of living, staycations with our pooches may be a good option. With a range of beaches, countrysides, forests, and cities to choose from, where do dog owners really want to take their dogs? Analysing unique data from Ahrefs, a Google keyword research tool, we’ve established the most popular dog friendly destinations in the UK.

Top 10 most searched places in the UK to take your dog

When looking at locations to take your dog across the UK, we found the following came out on top*, with the most searches for ‘dog friendly’ places:

  1. Cornwall – 24,700 average monthly searches
  2. The Lake District – 18,100 average monthly searches
  3. Scotland – 17,350 average monthly searches
  4. Wales – 15,900 average monthly searches
  5. Norfolk – 11,800 average monthly searches
  6. Devon – 10,900 average monthly searches
  7. Yorkshire – 7,350 average monthly searches
  8. New Forest – 7,050 average monthly searches
  9. Dorset – 6,850 average monthly searches
  10. London – 6,100 average monthly searches

We’re not surprised Cornwall has the top spot, especially with its miles of dog-friendly beaches, fantastic coastal and country walks, not to mention a superb choice of dogs-allowed pubs, cafes, and restaurants. The Lake District closely follows, thanks to its wide range of open spaces and pet-friendly attractions, perfect for pooches who love a paddle and walking for miles. In at number 10 we have London, from sprawling parks and tucked-away pubs to stylish hotel suites and canine-friendly cafés, it’s no surprise London is one of the top 10 doggy destinations.

two dogs running together

Most searched things to do with your dog in the UK

Combining relevant searches with top searches around the type of places people want to take their dogs, top searches are:

  1. Cottages – 115,250 average searches per month
  2. Hotels – 80,300 average searches per month
  3. Pubs – 74,700 average searches per month
  4. Restaurants – 67,200 average searches per month
  5. Beaches – 57,750 average searches per month
  6. Cafés – 12,100 average searches per month
  7. Airbnbs – 4,600 average searches per month
  8. Glamping – 4,600 average searches per month
  9. Garden centres – 3,250 average searches per month
  10.  Shops – 1,450 average searches per month

If you combine the data for dog friendly related searches for cottages, hotels, Airbnbs and glamping, this would mean dog friendly holiday related searches total around 205,000 average searches per month in 2022.

With dog friendly accommodation becoming more sought after, there is now more choice than ever to holiday with your pet.

Dog friendly pubs

‘Dog friendly pubs near me’ has over 32,000 average searches per month. If you’re on the lookout for a dog-friendly pub, why not try the aptly named The Dog pub in Grundisburgh, Surrey, winner of the Dog-Friendly Pub Awards 2018? Or The Lorne in Scotland, a traditional Scottish pub set in the heart of Oban – this Scottish delight is often praised for being a ‘dog-friendly gem’ by customers on TripAdvisor.

Dog friendly beaches

Whether your dog loves to splash in the sea or just enjoys the feeling of sand beneath their paws, taking dogs to the beach is clearly a popular pastime. The specific term ‘dog friendly beaches’ averages 17,000 searches every month. It’s important to check the beach you’re heading to is dog friendly, as many beaches around the British coast only allow dogs at certain times of the year and some don’t allow them at all. The Beach Guide provides a helpful breakdown of truly dog friendly beaches by region.

dog laid down on the beach with a ball

Unusual places to take dogs

The research showed some interesting and unusual places to take your dog, here are some top picks:

Muddy Dog Challenge – The Muddy Dog Challenge, in aid of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, is a 2.5K and 5K obstacle course that you can take on with your dog by your side. Locations include New Forest, Manchester, Derby and many more.

Steam Train Experience – The North Yorkshire Moors Railways welcomes well behaved dogs at £3 each or free if you are a member (July 2022 prices). Dogs should be kept on a short lead and are not allowed on the seats. Think of the adventures you could have, travelling onboard a heritage steam or diesel train, through the enchanting North Yorkshire Moors National Park!

Dog-friendly cinemas – Who’d have thought that you would be able to take your dog to the cinema? Well, the good news is that if you have a Picturehouse cinema near you, you can. Keep an eye out for their dog-friendly screenings. These take place ruff-ly once a month, usually on a Sunday morning, complete with special drinks and snacks for your dog.

Dog-friendly shops – Did you know that there are 300 searches online every month by people wondering if IKEA is dog friendly? Unfortunately, you can’t take dogs there but, there are plenty of shops you can. Big high street names such as John Lewis, the Apple store, Cath Kidston, Harrods, Lush, Wilkos, Waterstones and Selfridges (in limited departments) allow dogs in their stores. Make sure your dog is on a lead and on its best behaviour. You may also want to check with your local branch first as dog accessibility can often be down to managers’ discretion.

So, dog leads at the ready, it’s time to explore the places dog lovers across the UK love to visit and some unlikely places too!

It’s important to help protect yourself from unexpected vet bills should your pooch become injured with Argos Pet Insurance provided by Pinnacle Insurance plc. Explore our dog insurance policies today.

*Data gathered using search tool Ahrefs, 2022 average monthly searches

All data correct at the time of publishing

Argos Limited is an Appointed Representative of Home Retail Group Insurance Services Limited (HIS). HIS is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (register number 314050). Registered office: 33 Holborn, London EC1N 2HT (registered in England and Wales, no 04109436). HIS act as an introducer to Pinnacle Insurance plc, who sell, administer and underwrite the policy and who are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (register number 110866). Registered office: Pinnacle House, A1 Barnet Way, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, WD6 2XX (registered in England and Wales, no 01007798). HIS and Pinnacle Insurance plc are not part of the same corporate group. © 2023 Pinnacle Insurance plc.

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