Dog-friendly places in Torbay to eat and drink after walks
After the overindulgence of the holiday season, many of us start the new year with a resolve to improve our health and fitness, but it can be hard to find the motivation to get outside when it’s so cold, damp and dark.
That’s why January has been chosen as National Walk Your Dog Month. Fresh air and exercise with your dog is good for both of you, and not just for physical and mental health reasons – it also improves your bond.
According to British Association of Veterinary Nurses (BVNA), the initiative was created to combat pet obesity. Almost 12% of dogs in the UK are overweight which can contribute to a number of health issues including diabetes, heart disease and joint problems.
The BVNA also reports that one in five dogs do not walk daily, and for those who do, the walk typically lasts less than 20 minutes.
Lack of adequate mental stimulation and physical activity can lead not only to health problems, but also to destructive behaviors.
The amount of exercise dogs need depends on their breed, age and health. the Kennel club website contains information about each breed, including the amount of exercise they typically need each day.
Many people like to recover from walking their dog to a pub or cafe, especially if the weather isn’t good. Luckily, there are plenty of pubs and cafes in Torbay that allow dogs everywhere, or at least in a designated area. Here you and your four-legged friend can warm up and enjoy a well-deserved meal and drink after your exertions.
You will also be supporting a local business, many of which have not only faced challenges caused by the pandemic, but are now also expecting a drop in income due to the popularity of ‘Dry January’ which sees people abandoning the alcohol for the month. .
If you go for a walk in the dark, think about your safety. Consider wearing a reflective jacket, grabbing a torch and putting your dog in a reflective harness or collar, or adding a flashing light. Avoid gravel paths or wash your dog’s paws immediately afterwards, as the gravel can burn the paw pads.
Here are some of the best places to eat with a dog in Torquay, Paignton and Brixham.
The Drum Inn, Cockington, Torquay
This country pub was originally designed to be the focal point of the quaint and historic village of Cockington.
There’s no shortage of routes to choose from for your dog walk in the 450-acre country park, and the thatched-roof pub is a delight no matter when you visit, with a lovely outdoor cafe air to enjoy in the summer and fireplaces to keep you warm during the winter.
The staff always make time to take care of the dogs and there is water and treats available for them.
The Thatched Tavern, Maidencombe, Torquay
This 17th century pub and restaurant on the outskirts of Torquay is the perfect place to relax after a stroll down the steps to Maidencombe beach, one of Torbay’s year-round dog-friendly beaches.
The Thatched Tavern has great food and drink and on my last visit the staff kindly brought a bed to my table to make my dog more comfortable.
Visto Lounge, Torquay
Visto Lounge is located directly across from Torre Abbey Sands, a dog-friendly beach in the winter (May 1 to September 30), but disappears completely at high tide.
Livermead Sands, which is dog-friendly year-round, is within walking distance.
Visto Lounge is often a popular choice for groups due to its varied menu offering something for everyone.
It can get busy and noisy, but at quiet times it’s a great place to take your dog, which is likely to attract a lot of attention from staff and customers.
However, there is a canine code to follow, with rules such as no legs on furniture and no dogs on laps. Dog bowls with water and treats are available.
Twenty1, which opened in the summer of 2018, has stunning views over Torquay Harbor and is a great place to visit whether you’re looking for a morning coffee, an evening cocktail or good food with good friends .
Not only is it dog-friendly, but you can also meet resident Hugo Cockapoo during your stay.
Cary Arms, Babbacombe, Torquay
This luxurious boutique hotel, spa and restaurant enjoys a spectacular location overlooking Babbacombe Beach, which is dog-friendly year-round.
It is a very steep walk or drive, but can also be accessed from Oddicombe beach.
Dogs are welcome in the Inn area and outside on the sunny terrace.
Water bowls and dog treats are available.
Keep your eyes peeled for a seal dancing in the water as they are often spotted in this part of the bay.
The Buccaneer, Babbacombe, Torquay
If you don’t fancy tackling the steep road to the Cary Arms, The Buccaneer, located on the clifftop promenade, is a good bet, especially if you’ve just taken your dog for a walk in Walls Hill, nearby.
It offers people and dogs a warm welcome and all the food and drink you’d expect to see on a typical pub menu.
Shoreline, located very close to Paignton Pier, offers panoramic sea views to admire while enjoying artisan pizzas, burgers and coffee.
It’s probably the most dog-friendly place in Torbay, with a dog station – offering dog bowls, towels and emergency poop bags, and a just-for-dogs menu with a sausage, a hamburger, cookie or ice cream.
He runs a dog club which helps raise money for animals in need and there are monthly dog walks to help bring dog lovers together.
Harbor Lighthouse, Paignton
the stunner restoration of this historic building made it a must-visit venue last year.
It has a fantastic view, but dogs are only allowed in the bar.
Still, it’s a cozy and welcoming space and the menu features ‘pub classics reimagined’ and fresh seafood. Harbor Light is a great place to refuel after a walk along Paignton Sands – although in summer dogs are not allowed on the beach.
Canteen, Goodrington, Paignton
Cantina Kitchen and Bar provides a cool environment for the whole family, including children and dogs.
Since it’s so close to the dog-friendly part of Goodrington Sands, it’s handy to have towels to dry off pooches who’ve bathed in the sea.
You can buy Frozzys dog ice cream so that every member of the family can enjoy it.
The Boathouse, Paignton
The Boathouse Bar and Grill is the perfect place to enjoy refreshments after you and your dog have exercised on Preston Sands.
Dogs are prohibited on the beach in the summer, but Preston Green, just behind the beach, is an alternative place where they can run.
The Boathouse has a laid-back, friendly atmosphere, but note that it’s closed on Mondays.
Guardhouse Cafe, Brixham
This friendly cafe is located in a Napoleonic fort on Berry Head.
It is a wonderful place to walk, although often very windy, and porpoises can often be spotted from the top of the cliff.
It is advisable to keep your dog on a leash so that it does not risk overflowing.
The award-winning cafe offers a range of local and homemade hot and cold dishes, and is well known for its cream teas.
Breakwater Bistro, Brixham
You and your dog can enjoy the sea views from this laid-back bistro which overlooks, as the name suggests, the Breakwater and Breakwater Beach.
It is currently operating as a take-out due to Covid, but you are welcome to eat your food inside – in other words, there is no table service.
Dogs are allowed on Breakwater Beach in the winter.
The Old Market House, Brixham
This atmospheric restaurant and bar overlooking Brixham Harbor allows dogs downstairs and is ideal for everyone, whether you’re looking for a casual lunch with the family or a special dinner.
Sometimes you can enjoy live music here.