Tuesday, June 21, 2011


We periodically get enquiries from people needing help with socialising (rather than training) young dogs, so I was interested to find there is a local group who organise monthly communal walks: Big Walkies. Most of their events seem to be concentrated around St. Ives, where the main organisers live, but they do list some walks in Milton Country Park, and I would imagine they may schedule more this side of the county if they get enough interest. 

Membership is free (they request a donation of £1 per dog per walk to cover admin costs), so this may be an option for people who can't afford formal dog training classes but want to encourage their dog to develop a positive attitude to other dogs.

They have some sensible Terms and Conditions which walkers are expected to comply with:

  • Ensure that any dog(s) I bring to Big Walkies will be fully vaccinated.
  • Have valid pet insurance for any dog that I bring with me OR agree to financial liability for any injuries received by myself or my dog, as my pet is uninsured. (If your dog happens to cause/receive injury on a walk we encourage that any costs occurred are claimed via your pet insurance or via the civil court. Big Walkies accepts no liability for personal or dog injuries).
  • Have full control and responsibility for any dog(s) that I bring with me to Big Walkies.
  • Ensure that any dog(s) I bring has a fair temperament (due to member safety we cannot accept known aggressive dogs on our walks. We are here to help dogs socialise, but will not take any unnecessary risks therefore if a dog becomes aggressive/causes injury towards either another dog or a person on the walk they will be asked to muzzle their dogs on future walks or even asked to leave Big Walkies group).
  • Ensure that any mess that the dog(s) that I bring to Big Walkies creates is picked up and disposed of legally by myself.
(Disclaimer: as always, the RSPCA can't take responsibility for events that are organised by someone else).

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