10 Dog friendly places to stay in Dorset

Two dogs outside The Fox Inn, Mark Hix's country pub in Dorset

Dogs are made to feel very welcome at The Fox Inn - Credit: Kim White

Dorset is very dog-friendly county, from luxury country house hotels to cosy country pubs here are some favourite places that get top barks from my discerning canine companions  

The Fox Inn, Corscombe: Dogs are welcome in every area of The Fox Inn, Mark Hix's country pub in Corscombe, and that includes the accommodation – Bill’s Garden Annexe and Castlewood Annexe. Your canine companion can tuck into complimentary dog biscuits and lap from the spring running through the garden. Dorset doggy walks books invite you to explore the nearby coast and countryside. Complimentary Bramley Digby Dog Wash (with lavender and mandarin essential oils) and dog towels ensure your companion is suitably spruced up to join you for dinner! thefoxinncorscombe.co.uk 

Dog in a bike basket at The Fox Inn, Mark Hix's Dorset pub

The Fox Inn is very dog friendly - Credit: Kim White

The Grove Arms, Ludwell: Buddy, the owner’s black Labrador, is the emblem for this award-winning establishment - the reigning South West Winners for Best Dog Friendly Public House. Set in the village of Ludwell, near Shaftesbury, you will find six ensuite 4* star AA rated dog-friendly bedrooms. The Grove Arms is well situated for wonderful walkies in the Donhead Valley, and after your dog can tuck into the Mutts Menu whilst you browse the excellent menu for human customers. grovearms-ludwell.co.uk 

Dog sitting at the bar at The Grove Arms in Dorset

The Grove Arms in Ludwell, an award-winning dog friendly establishment - Credit: The Grove Arms

Plumber Manor Country House Hotel, Sturminster Newton: This beautiful manor house, home of the Prideaux-Brunes since the 17th century, has its own resident black Labrador called Angus. In the Good Hotel Guide for over 40 years, they know how to look after human and canine guests. There are four dog friendly bedrooms (book by phone) with access to the gardens (no dogs in the main house). This area has some wonderful walks, after your dog can chill in your room whilst you enjoy the excellent dining Plumber Manor  is famous for. plumbermanor.co.uk 

The Acorn Inn: The people who run this award-winning pub in Evershot are dog owners themselves. There are on-lead walkies in a 400-acre deer park at the bottom of the village, and countless footpaths over fields and hills where your dog can roam under control. There are water bowls and biscuits in the bar and in the dog-friendly bedrooms as well as a dog towel, treats and a dog-friendly guide to the area. Well-behaved canines may join you in the restaurant or can relax in your room. acorn-inn.co.uk 

Dog enjoying a fireside spot at The Acorn Inn in Dorset

Settling into a fireside space at The Acorn Inn, treats and water provided - Credit: The Acorn Inn

The Eastbury Hotel, Sherborne: As the hotel’s owner Peter de Savary is a dog-lover, Monty the Chihuahua is his regular travelling companion, you know that your canine will be top dog here. The nine dog-friendly bedrooms includes a comfy dog bed, bowls, treats, a squeaky dog toy and a welcome letter from Monty! Well-behaved dogs are allowed in a section of the restaurant and chef will even make a chicken and rice dinner for your four-legged dining companion! Nearby is Purlieu Meadows great for an off the lead run. theeastburyhotel.co.uk   

Dog in a basket in a dog friendly bedroom at The Eastbury Hotel, Dorset

One of the dog-friendly bedrooms at The Eastbury Hotel in Sherborne - Credit: Eastbury Hotel

The Bear in Wareham: This recently refurbished 18th century coaching inn in the heart of Wareham is well placed for some brilliant dog walks from nearby Wareham Quay. Dogs are welcome within all of The Bear’s public areas, and one well-behaved dog (with its own bed) is welcome to stay in Paddington, Goldilocks, Baloo, Iorek Byrnison, Ruxpin and Yogi bedrooms. After your walkies, settle by the log fire with homemade scones and a pot of tea whilst your companion has a snooze. thebearwareham.co.uk   

Dogs Scrumpy and Rosie on a Dorset walk

Scrumpy and Rosie during one of their Dorset walkies - Credit: Helen Stiles

The Crown Hotel, Blandford: When we stayed here with our dogs Scrumpy and Rosie they gave the Crown Hotel full barks. Not only is there a cracking walk within seconds of this handsome Georgian coaching inn (with 27 dog-friendly ensuite bedrooms), there is also Carrot Crunch doggy ice cream, Pawsecco and Dog Beer available. Situated just a stone’s throw from the Hall & Woodhouse brewery, just over the road is Stour Meadows, making this an absolute gem of a location with a lovely riverside walk. crownhotelblandford.co.uk 

The Knoll House, Studland: A few minutes’ walk from Studland Bay, you’ll find one of the most charming hotels in Dorset which is also proudly dog-friendly. Welcoming up to two dogs per booking, Knoll House welcomes dog throughout the hotel and gardens (not in the restaurant, children’s area and leisure facilities) and nearby are the dog-friendly South Beach and Knoll Beach. After they can curl up in front of the fire, or in summer find a shady spot on the patio as you tuck into a Dorset cream tea with their Famous Five cake selection. knollhouse.co.uk

Afternoon tea sandwiches, scones, cake and tea on the terrace at Knoll House Hotel in Dorset

Afternoon tea on the terrace at Knoll House Hotel, with Studland Bay beyond - Credit: knollhouse.co.uk

The Grosvenor Arms, Shaftesbury: Awarded gold in the Taste of the West Awards 2022 for South West Dining Pub, this stylishly Georgian coaching-inn in the heart of Shaftesbury welcomes dogs in all 16 ensuite bedrooms. Your dog can dine with you in the conservatory and bar area (where a full menu is served) but not in the restaurant. Located on the edge of Cranborne Chase AONB, there are great dog walks around here and in February stunning snowdrop displays in Britain’s first Snowdrop Town. grosvenorarms.co.uk 

Two dogs sitting either side of a spring at The Fox Inn, Dorset

The garden at The Fox Inn with its spring, ideal for al fresco lapping - Credit: Kim White

Summer Lodge Country House Hotel, Evershot: This award-winning boutique hotel in Evershot offers five-star service to humans and canines! Dine with your dog in the bar lounge area, or in summer on the patio. The dog-friendly rooms come with dog beds (in three sizes), food and water bowls with mat (Lily’s Kitchen dog food available on request) and dog treats. There’s a dog-wash station for rinsing down muddy mutts, ‘woof’ towels for drying off and a map of dog walks on Melbury Estate. summerlodgehotel.co.uk  

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