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What do the new English lockdown rules mean for dog owners?

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On Saturday evening, the PM announced new lockdown measures that will affect the whole of England. For some dog owners, this could affect how we care for our pups.

By Natasha James

Published on the 02/11/2020, 12:30, Updated on the 08/02/2021, 13:24

As Covid cases rise across the UK, we’re facing a second national lockdown that’s expected to last until at least December 2nd. Many non-essential businesses will close, people will be encouraged to work from home and pubs and restuarants will close once more.

But, what does all this mean for dog owners?

Can I walk my dog during the new Covid lockdown?

The answer is yes as long as you’re not self-isolating but there are a few rules to consider. The government advise that you stay two metres apart from anyone outside your household or support bubble and, if in an area with other people, to keep your dog on a lead so that you can maintain distance. If there's a chance you may not be able to maintain distance from others, then a face mask should be worn.

Can I walk my dog if I’m asked to self isolate?

You must self isolate if you have Covid symptoms, have tested positive or are quarantining after travelling abroad. If you’re self isolating then you must not walk your dog. Aim to encourage your dog to exercise indoors with you but if this isn't possible then ask a friend or neighbour to walk your dog for you.

I’m walking a dog for someone else, what should I do?

Be sure to wash your hands for the recommended 20 seconds both before and after walking a dog for someone else. Aim to keep two metres away from others, including the dog owner and wear a mask during handover for added safety.

The situation isn’t ideal for any of us and we’re all hoping that things return to normal very soon but in the meantime, follow the rules on dog walking during lockdown to avoid spreading the virus.

See also: Dogs can help us to get through the worst of Covid-19