Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Road Tripping with Dogs - Denmark Western Australia

It has taken me a long time to write about this trip because I had to get the photos together, but we took Barbie, Bender and Zelda for a big road trip down to Denmark, Western Australia. We got a dog friendly holiday house so that we could have the dogs inside with us.

With three dogs in the car we didn't have much room for other stuff. We had Bender and Barbie on the back seat, and Zelda behind the cargo barrier in the back. It was a 5 hour trip, so we had to stop and get the dogs out of the car a couple of times. At our lunch stop I found a nice little park with some old play equipment I could tether the dogs to.

Bender and Barbie don't mind being tethered though Zelda didn't like it very much. I needed my hands free to eat my greasy road trip lunch, so I made no apologies.

It was really great to get to the house - a small place with a huge verandah and nice fenced in yard. The dogs were happy to run around after being cooped up in the car for so long.

The yard was really big and was a great place for the doggies to play. The house was fairly small and the verandah was massive. It had a nice reverse-cycle air conditioner for heating which is necessary in Denmark in winter. We had bought three dog beds with us, so everyone was effectively kept off the furniture.

Denmark is in a fairly dog friendly area, there are plenty of lovely places where dogs are allowed to hike with their owners. A lot of other country towns are surrounded by National Parks where doggies are prohibited.

Usually N had Bender on the leash and I had the two greyhounds. Sometimes though, one of us would take all three and they are pretty well behaved together.

We hiked with the dogs every morning, returned them to the house and spent the afternoon doing dog-less activities. We had a nice drink at the local brewery.

We also went to a few local wineries. My favorite place was Whitfield Estate and if you take a moment to pop over to their website, you will quickly figure out why. When we arrived the first thing I asked was where the dogs were. Yes, Whitfield is home to three beautiful Bernese Mountain Dogs called Bindi, Mac and Bud. 

Unfortunately the dogs were just leaving in their Range Rover as we arrived - they would never turn down the opportunity to go for a drive, so they were going into town. 

We were told that if we stuck around for dessert the dogs would be back. We ordered some lunch, and I had a lovely chicken pie. Then dessert was ordered and I was enjoying myself sitting in the sun. They actually phoned the dog-chaueffeur to check how far away the dogs were, and they arrived just as I finished my coffee.

Bernese Mountain dogs are from Switzerland and are commonly called 'Berners'. They used to pull laden carts. Bindi was very affectionate whilst Mac and Bud seemed more interested in the possibility of an afternoon snack. They were like big cuddly bears. 

The dogs got to enjoy a couple of beautiful beaches. The closest to town was Lights Beach. Barbie and Zelda both conquered some formidable skeleton stairs here. Zelda went straight down, though Barbie only went down after we walked around at the top for a while looking for an alternative route.

At Lights Beach we met another dog who was playing with a tennis ball. We kept Bender away from him so that it wouldn't be stolen and immediately punctured. They left and as we were walking back, Bender spotted something in the water. The other dog must have left his ball alone, floating in the ocean. Bender went straight in after it in order to rescue it. He killed it with kindness once he pulled it out of the water though and then he dropped it onto the rocks behind the stairs. We had to leave it behind.

At Cosy Corner, we discovered a cute little river flowing into the ocean. The dogs were thirsty and I tasted it to make sure it was fresh before we let them have a drink. It almost looked like a river of Coca-cola, the river water stained with tannins because of the leaves of native plants.

We even did a cafe visit at Cosy Corner with all three dogs. They were all a bit cheeky, I think it was just because all three of them were there.

Bender wanted to know when the food would arrive. When it finally did it was a bit of a struggle to keep Zelda away from my plate!

We had the inlaws over to the holiday house for dinner and we had a few glasses of wine. I left my wine glass on the table while I went to help in the kitchen with something. Father-in-law started laughing, and I looked over to see Zelda delicately dipping her tongue into my glass. She did well not to knock it over when I told her off. 

The drive home was very relaxed with Zelda lying down in the back, and Bender and Barbie snuggling. Overall it was a great little break and I can't wait to do it again. The holiday house we found is a true little gem and having the dogs along really makes the holiday complete! 

I made a video of the trip too, but I am going to leave that for the next blog post. 

Where is your favorite place to holiday with your dog? 

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