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NEWS RELEASE No: 1649524 MARCH 2015

Battersea Dogs & Cats Home joins with Forestry Commission England for Walk Your Dog Week

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Walk Your Dog Week (27 April - 3 May 2015)

Battersea Dogs & Cats Home has become the latest charity to join up with partners including Forestry Commission England as part of Walk Your Dog Week (27 April – 3 May 2015).

The initiative was launched last year to encourage more people to take regular exercise with their dogs and encourage responsible dog ownership.

Battersea, one of the UK’s best loved animal charities, has joined the initiative to highlight what it really takes to look after your pets and promote the great enjoyment people can get from having dogs in their lives.

Battersea re-homes nearly 3,000 dogs every year to families all across the UK, from St. Ives to Strathclyde. The charity has joined forces with Forestry Commission England to encourage responsible dog ownership and to encourage more owners to get out and about with their four-legged friends.

Rob Young, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Head of Dog Re-homing said:

“Battersea re-homes on average seven dogs every day and we give help and advice to owners on how to provide the very best care for the new addition to their family. A pet in your life brings many joys and benefits, for both you and your dog, not least of which is getting plenty of exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle.

“We’re very supportive of Walk Your Dog Week which will hopefully get lots of dogs and their owners out enjoying the great outdoors.”

The event also has the backing of the Kennel Club, PDSA, Dogs Trust and Yellow Dog UK.

Forestry Commission England sites offer great opportunities to exercise dogs off the lead (provided the pets are under effective control, so they can enjoy woods and forests alongside the variety of wildlife and other visitors).

David Williamson, Head of Recreation and Public Affairs at Forestry Commission England, said:

“Our forests are prime locations to get plenty of exercise, with great views and lots of fantastic trails to explore for people and their pets.

“There are lots of dog-friendly facilities and many areas in our forest that are safe for dogs to be let off the lead. We also like to encourage pet owners to help us look after our forests by making sure they clear up dog mess from our trails. In addition, we’re asking them to keep their pets under effective control – so having a short lead with you when needed and keeping your dog in sight when off the lead.”

To help dogs and their owners make the most of their visits, Forestry Commission England has published its online Ruff Guide to the Forest, offering local information on dog-friendly activities in more than 35 woods and forests and their surrounding areas. Many of these woods and forests have dog agility trails and way-marked trails that offer physical challenges for dogs and owners.

Forestry Commission England also has a wealth of other information and ideas for dogs and their owners looking for a great day out. More information is available at


Notes to Editor

Images available on request.

1. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Further information can be found at

2. Established in 1860, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home aims never to turn away a dog or cat in need of our help.  We reunite lost dogs and cats with their owners through our Lost Dogs and Cats Line or care for them until new homes can be found for them, giving them shelter and the highest standards of kennelling and veterinary care.  Since it was founded, Battersea has rescued, reunited and re-homed over 3.1 million dogs and cats. For further information on Battersea Dogs & Cats Home please visit Follow Battersea on Twitter @BDCH or

3. Media Contact: Katrina Podlewska, Senior PR and Partnerships Officer, 0300 0674030 or