What you need to know:
- Karura Forest in Nairobi has been a popular haven for pet owners and fitness enthusiasts for a long time.
- It is an excellent place to take your dog off-leash for a long or short walk.
- The off-leash rules and other dog safety rules keep being revised, so visit the website before showing up at the gate.
With lockdown, cessation of movement in the disease-infested counties and the closure of hotels, many of us have been left with a few ways of socialising during the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
If you are a pet owner, consider taking your pet to the following places, for them to breathe and spend their energy as also you get some peace, solitude and interaction with the environment.
Karura Forest in Nairobi has been a popular haven for pet owners and fitness enthusiasts for a long time. It is an excellent place to take your dog off-leash for a long or short walk. The off-leash rules and other dog safety rules keep being revised, so visit the website before showing up at the gate. The forest is very soothing though, the paths meander through the trees and water features, and it is well sign-posted, so you will hardly get lost.
Ololua Nature Trail
This is located in Karen in Nairobi
As your dog runs around and takes a dip in some of the water features, you will enjoy the waterfall, the nature trail, the papyrus swamp and a bamboo rest point. This place has less human traffic than Karura Forest and hence a good place for those with pets.
The dogs get to enjoy the walks on the extensive tracks. The hike is long, tedious and some parts are hilly, so make sure your dog, especially a house dog, can endure. There are also lots of livestock up there, so you might want to be careful if your dogs like to chase cows, goats and sheep. Be alert to fellow hikers; there are always people who are afraid of dogs.
You can go for a short getaway in an Airbnb that allow pets. Most should have a backyard compound or lots of space where the pet can run around. Some hosts offer treats for your pet, especially if they also keep pets.
Just note that with Airbnbs, even if a listing states ‘Pets allowed,’ contact the host to check if the status is still current and if specific restrictions apply.
When having your pet out there with no leash, exercise all precautions necessary. First of all, make sure the pet is trained to be off-leash. Other people are using the facilities, so make sure your dog is not aggressive. Also, keep an eye on them because many dogs get lost in nature walks.
Maryanne is a pet owner. [email protected]