12th April 2019

The perfect house for a dog.

We are a nation of dog lovers. Most clients looking to move out of London to the country for schools, more space and a reasonable commute back into town, will cite ‘buying a dog’ as top of their list of things to do – once they’ve found the perfect country house, of course.

It’s a well-trodden path and I should know better than most because that’s exactly what we did. Following on from our move 18 months ago from London to Hampshire, we now have the obligatory dog. Minnie, the miniature smooth-haired Dachshund - a non-negotiable part of the move as far as my children were concerned - has arrived.

The good news is that every country house you buy would be right for a dog; you can’t really go far wrong. But there are some features that make a country home even more dog friendly, such as: 

* An outside dog bath

Who hasn’t been on a tramp through the countryside and returned with the dog covered in mud? An outside bath enables you to clean up Fido without him traipsing his muddy paws through the house to your own bathroom.

* Or failing that, a hot outside tap

Again, for hosing down after those muddy walks. The dog may just have swum in a freezing cold ditch of muddy water but it doesn’t feel ‘right’ hosing her down with icy water from the hosepipe once we get home.

* Good footpaths

Walking the dog is one of the best country past times you can enjoy. Go for a walk without a dog and everyone ignores you but once you have one, they stop for a chat. Minnie has certainly helped me make friends in my village. A good selection of footpaths near the front door helps, so you don’t have to jump in the car every time you take the dog out. 

* A well-fenced garden

You don’t want to lose your dog from your garden or have to keep it on a lead while it goes about its ‘business’. Check to see how well fenced the property is when buying a house in a village.

* An Aga

For sleeping next to, of course, and generally keeping the house warm and cosy. 

* A boot room

Great for dog-walking paraphernalia – leads, wet coats, wellies.

One final thing you must do is enter the village dog show, although a word to the wise – aim for muted celebrations rather than all-out jubilation. I was delighted when Minnie won first place in the ‘prettiest bitch’ category but it turns out that the vicar’s wife was none too thrilled by the fist pumping or victory lap.

Read Emma's previous blogs on moving to the country: http://www.prime-purchase.com/insight-and-opinion/escape-to-the-country---one-year-on.aspx and http://www.prime-purchase.com/insight-and-opinion/timing-your-move-to-the-country.aspx