Unfortunately due to Ted’s recent bad experiences with other dogs, he has become quite reactive (we are getting training for this) and you can see how uneasy he is out on walks worrying about running into one. Something that has really been helping him enjoy walks recently is getting up early and going out before most people (and dogs) are even out of bed. We’re trying to do this at least once a week as its a great training opportunity and also allows us to explore beautiful walks that are usually quite busy. I thought it would be useful to document these walks incase anyone else (reactive dogs or otherwise) would like to make an early morning expedition for a peaceful walk just them and their dog.
A few weekends ago we went for a lovely hike to Lud’s church. You can walk across The Roaches to get there but we wanted to start off easy so we only did half of the full route. We parked in a lay by at the end of The Roaches which has a signposted route guiding you to Lud’s Church.
We had our pick of spaces since it was so early. There was no one else there when we arrived and even when we got back to the car there were only a couple of others arriving. We then did a circular walk which looped us back around to the car.
Unfortunately Lud’s church itself was so muddy that we only walked half way down then had to turn back and come out the way we went in so we went a slightly different route than we had planned. Poor Ted was practically swimming through the mud – thankfully they have since put down a wooden walkway.
This was actually our first early morning hike so we didn’t do too well at getting up – we woke up at about 6 but didn’t actually arrive and start walking until half 7. Luckily we were still early enough not to run into any dogs, we didn’t even see many other people – just a runner and a few walkers. In terms of how long the walk took us, we were back to the car for 9.30 so we were out for 2 hours. You could easily do this walk in just over an hour but when you’re like me and stop for photos every 5 minutes it adds on quite a bit of time.
The walk was relatively easy, mostly flat! If it hadn’t have been for the steps down into Lud’s Church I would have given this a 1 paw difficulty rating but they are quite steep. Ted was actually a bit scared of them so I ended up carrying him down.
Overall this was a great walk, very quiet at this time of morning which is just what I wanted for Ted. I’ve had to knock one paw off due to the fact we almost got stuck in the mud whilst we were walking through Lud’s Church but i’m sure if the weather has been nice you wouldn’t have this issue!
That’s all from us! If you try this walk be sure to let us know how you got on by tagging us in a photo on instagram or tweeting us: @cheshirecanines
Formby Beach is Amber’s all time favourite walk location, she sees the sand and all of a sudden it’s like she’s a real dog. She runs, paddles, chases birds and even occasionally plays with other dogs! We are very lucky to have such a great dog walking location just a 40 minute drive from us.
There are two car parks at Formby beach, both owned by the national trust. We are members to always choose to park in the car parks but a lot of people choose to park on the streets leading up to them so that they don’t have to pay for parking. Our car park of choice is usually Life Boat Road as this includes a lovely walk over the sand dunes to get to the beach – however the car park on Victoria road is also a great option as you have the woodland red squirrel walk that leads you down to the beach. I prefer this one if i’m planning on spending a full day at the beach as there are toilet facilities and a woodland for shade if it gets too warm.
During the summer months we tend to avoid going to the beach during the day as it gets quite busy with the children being off school, especially when the weather is nice. I tend to take Amber in the early morning or late evening so that it’s cool enough for her to run around and have a proper play. We’ll either arrive before 8am in the morning or after 7am in the evening which also means that the parking kiosks are closed so you can park for free, even if you’re not a national trust member! I have to say I prefer the evenings as the beach is north-west facing so you get a gorgeous sunset on a clear day.
Upon arrival at the back we usually walk straight down towards the sea, as Amber quite likes chasing the waves. The beach is the only place she’ll go further into water than just dipping her toes in, she’s even had a swim a few times which is unheard of for a lazy, water-phobic dog! We then walk along for a few miles and come back on ourselves to get back to the car – i’d love to be able to do a longer walk but that’s more than enough for Amber as she’ll chase seagulls and run ahead along the way so she’s usually knackered afterwards. I took her on Sunday evening and she still hasn’t moved since (It’s now Tuesday).
Her PitPat results on Sunday:
An average day for Amber:
What’s your favourite place to walk with your dog? Any other beach babies out there?
Love Ellie & Amber (and Ted who also loves the beach, he’s just struggling with other dogs at the minute so hasn’t been for a while)