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Dog walking with children in Epping Forest

​Two children walking with their dog

Dog walking is one of the most popular activities in Epping Forest and provides great exercise for humans and canines alike!

Discover our nine waymarked trails on our walking page.

Check out the Epping Forest Map (300KB).

Or pop into one of the visitor centres for advice on where to go with your dog.

You and your four-legged friend can explore the Forest freely, but please make sure that your dog is kept on the lead or under effective control at all times.

Be aware that your dog can upset livestock, like our grazing cattle, and the wildlife living in the Forest, especially groundnesting birds like skylarks, and be conscious of other Forest users.

Please clean up after your dog. Dog waste is not only unpleasant for humans but also damages the delicate ecological balance of the Forest. You can put the waste in any of the litter bins in the car parks or surrounding streets or take it home with you.

Our byelaws apply to dog walkers as well as Dog Control Orders developed by Newham, Redbridge, Epping Forest District and Waltham Forest Councils. Find out more about what these mean for you below.

A happy white dog panting at the camera in Broadstrood.

​A happy dog out for a walk near Broadstrood

​Dog Control Orders (DCOs)

There are several local councils which have issued Dog Control Orders that apply to you and your dog when walking in and around the Forest alongside our byelaws, including Redbridge, Newham, Epping Forest District and Waltham Forest.

Our Forest Keepers are special constables and empowered to enforce both the byelaws and the four different Dog Control Orders detailed below.

When walking your dog in any part of the Forest that is in these boroughs, you must:

  1. Remove dog faeces
  2. Put your dog on a lead when directed to do so by an authorised officer, which includes Forest Keepers

These rules apply to all open air spaces to which the public have access within the boroughs, including Forest land, and failure to comply is an offence that may result in a fine or prosecution.

Alongside these two rules, there are additional rules that apply to the Dog Control Orders in each of the four boroughs.

Epping Forest District

You must also not walk more than four dogs at once in Epping Forest District.

For more information, see the Epping Forest District Council website.

London Borough of Waltham Forest

You must also:

  1. Not walk more than six dogs at once
  2. Comply with dog exclusion areas indicated by signs, including children's play areas
  3. Keep dogs on a lead in designated areas

For more information, see the London Borough of Waltham Forest website.

London Borough of Redbridge

You must also:

  1. Comply with dog exclusion areas indicated by signs, including children's play areas
  2. Keep dogs on a lead on highways, footpaths and grass verges

For more information, see the London Borough of Redbridge website.

London Borough of Newham

You must also:

  1. Not walk more than four dogs at once
  2. Comply with dog exclusion areas indicated by signs, including children's play areas
  3. Keep dogs on a lead on highways, footpaths and grass verges

For more information, see the London Borough of Newham website.

Published:
26 March 2012
Last Modified:
13 June 2016

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