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Is North Yorkshire the Most Dog Friendly Place on Earth?

A totally unscientific and extremely biased analysis.

When we moved to England in August 2020, we didn't really have high hopes for dog friendliness: bringing a dog into the UK is expensive, stressful, and really complicated, and when we first started looking for homes we were struck by how many listings seemed to prohibit dogs. It didn't take long for us to realise that Winston (and later, Clementine) would get to do far more things with us here in the UK--from visiting thousands-year-old ruins to enjoying Sunday roast in a pub--than we could have ever imagined.

In general, the UK is definitely more relaxed when it comes to dogs than the US. Part of this has to do with strict Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules in the US that prohibit dogs (other than registered service animals) from entering indoor areas where food is prepared. In April 2023, the FDA issued the decision that dogs could be allowed in outdoor areas of restaurants. For those of us who live in the UK, the idea that a dog would not be allowed to sit in the outdoor area of any restaurant likely seems wild!

There are, of course, strong feelings on all sides. Some have fears and trepidation about the extent to which people can be trusted to train and handle their dogs in restaurant environments. Others are concerned with hygiene and allergies. As Win and Clem's mum, however, I relish every opportunity I have to bring my babies with me wherever and whenever I can--in return, I ensure my dogs are always on lead, supervised, and quiet. If I couldn't trust my dogs not to bark or wee on the floor, I wouldn't bring them with me!

We've been all around the UK with our Scotties: Cornwall, Snowdonia, London, Hampshire, Oxford, the Cotswolds, Essex, the Lake District, the Peak District, Manchester, Newcastle, Loch Lomond, Aberdeenshire, and everywhere in between. We've felt welcome to bring the babies with us pretty much everywhere, but... there's no place like home. In North Yorkshire, it truly seems like nearly everyone has at least one dog, and most other people seem very unbothered by dogs in pubs, restaurants, bars, shops, parks, and historic sites. For us, it's heavenly!

Restaurants, Pubs, and Coffee Shops

We are so fortunate to have so many dog friendly places to choose from where we live! When we want to bring Winnie and Clemmie along with us for a meal, we find ourselves going to the following places most often:

Major Tom's Social, 3 The Ginnel, Harrogate HG1 2RB

A Scottish terrier puppy sits at a table eyeing a pint of cider and a glass of gin and tonic.

The first restaurant we ever took Ms Clem to! She was only three months old when we brought her here in February.

A Scottish terrier puppy sleeps in a busy restaurant in Harrogate.

Clem loved Major Tom's from her first encounter, and immediately deeming it a great place to nap.

Dogs are totally welcome at Major Tom's, and they have AMAZING pizza and a great selection of beer. It's our favourite casual place to eat dinner in town.

Cold Bath Deli, 36 Cold Bath Road, Harrogate HG2 0NA

Everyone here is so friendly, and they have the best soups and sandwiches. Dogs are welcome inside and outside, and they even have dog-related events from time to time, like the one pictured below.

A chalkboard that reads: "Cold Bath Deli presents... PAWSECCO. Bring your dog to our doggy friendly afternoon. Sunday 3rd July 2-4pm. Choice of 3 homemade dog treats anda. small bottle of prosecco £13,95

Pawsecco! Too cute.

A Scottish terrier rests his snout on the table at Cold Bath Deli.

Mr Win loves Cold Bath Deli.

Smiths Arms, Church Row, Beckwithshaw, Harrogate HG3 1QW

We LOVE a good Sunday roast, and this one may be our all-time fave. Not only can you bring your dogs into the pub area, but this is one of the only places we know of that does a bone-in beef roast. It is simply extraordinary. The gravy, Yorkshire puds, potatoes, and cheesy cauliflower are also all phenomenal. Oh, and so is the dessert.

A warm welcome!

Winnie & Clemmie with their friend Waffles.

Fall-apart-tender bone-in beef! Giant Yorkshire pudding! Crispy-on-the-outside, plush-on-the-inside potatoes! Thick, flavourful gravy!

Manna Bakery, 34 Cold Bath Rd, Harrogate HG2 0NA

Whether you want to sit down for lunch or pop in for a great coffee and a freshly made pastry, Manna is perfect! When I walk Win and Clem in Valley Gardens, I usually stop into Manna with them. I love their oat milk cappuccinos and absolutely massive cinnamon rolls. Their freshly baked bread is also to die for.

Coffee and a cinnamon roll pastry from Manna Bakery.

Hoxton North, 1A Royal Parade, Harrogate HG1 2SZ

Love this bustling coffee and breakfast place in town! It can be really hard to get a seat here during peak hours, but it's well worth it. The food is amazing and fresh and the service is always friendly and warm.

A Scottish terrier sitting inside Hoxton North, captioned "New favourite breakfast place in town"

No35, 35 Cheltenham Crescent, Harrogate HG1 1DH

This coffee is elite, and Mr Win PULLS to go here because he always gets pets and treats. You know a coffee place is going to be good when the head of customer relations is an adorable pup named Walter.

A Scottish terrier pictured with a cup of coffee from No35, captioned, "Best Coffee in Harrogate, hands down"

Historic Places

Brimham Rocks, Brimham Moor Road, Summerbridge, Harrogate HG3 4DW

Absolutely stunning, other worldly rock formations that are hundreds of millions of years old. There are miles of trails and scenic views of moorland. We love bringing the babies here to walk around and soak in the jaw-dropping sites.

Two Scottish terriers sitting in front of a rock formation at Brimham Rocks.

Fountains Abbey, Fountains, Ripon HG4 3DY

We couldn't believe dogs were welcome at this beautifully preserved twelfth-century monastery, but we're so glad they are. Whenever we have visitors we take them to this gorgeous place. It's particularly beautiful in the summer when the monastery is set across acres upon acres of verdant landscape.

A Scottish terrier pictured outside the ruins of Fountains Abbey.

Mother Shipton's Cave, Harrogate Road, High Bridge, Knaresborough HG5 8DD

Said to be the oldest tourist attraction in England, Mother Shipton's is the home of the famous Petrifying Well (pictured with Winnie below) and the birthplace of the legendary 'Prophetess' Mother Shipton.

A Scottish terrier pictured in front of the Petrifying Well at Mother Shipton's Cave.

Whitby Abby, Abbey Lane, Whitby YO22 4JT

We have a whole separate post on this!

Marigold Boating, 16 Waterside, Knaresborough HG5 8DE

Fancy a canoe ride on the River Nidd underneath the gorgeous Knaresborough Aqueduct? You can bring your dog along for the ride by renting from Marigold. It's just opposite Mother Shipton's cave.

A Scottish terrier pictured in a canoe on the River Nidd.

Meander through a lovely woodland waterfall called Janet's Foss and make your way to Gordale Scar before arriving at Malham Cove, a stunning limestone formation made perhaps even more famous by its feature in Part One of the Harry Potter and Deathly Hallows film. We had to carry Winnie over the rocks at Malham Cove, so exercise extreme caution if you bring your small dog with you! We recommend The Buck Inn in Malham if you want to turn this adventure into a pub walk (if you love pub walks, try out the Pub Walks app--it is great for choosing routes and finding dog-friendly pubs).

A Scottish terrier pictured in front of Janet's Foss, a waterfall.

A Scottish terrier shaking it out inside The Buck Inn.

Getting a little crazy at The Buck Inn after a long day of walking.

What do you think is the most dog friendly place in the world? Comment below!

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1 Comment

Chloe Gunther
Chloe Gunther
Jul 11, 2023

Smiths Arms is our favorite pub! And for things to do, we love the dog friendly castles.

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