Heading to Leicestershire with a furry friend and wondering where to grab a pint and a bite to eat? This county is just full of pretty pubs so there’s no reason not to bring your best friend along on your next jaunt. From canal-side gastropubs to rural watering holes where locals and their dogs congregate—we’ve compiled a handy guide to a few of Leicestershire’s most dog-friendly pubs.
If you’re visiting Leicestershire and don’t want to drive, take the train! You can take up to two dogs with you on all British trains free of charge—find out more in our article Can I Take My Dog on the Train?
Address & Map: Front Street, Leicester, LE4 4DP
Denzil the German Shepherd is the resident pub dog at The Old Plough and also somewhat of a celebrity. He’s appeared in the local newspaper (The Leicester Mercury), on the East Midlands news, and he has his very own Facebook page. Denzil’s a friendly soul who loves it when four-legged friends visit the pub and he’ll happily share a biscuit or two with them. There are bowls of water placed both inside and outside the bar, but if your furry little mate prefers a change they also sell dog beer!
Two-legged patrons have an impressive selection of drinks to choose from, including craft beers, real ales, 60 whiskies, 25 rums, 18 vodkas, and 40 gins. They can also chow down on a good selection of pub grub, like steak and ale pie, all-day breakfasts, burgers and steaks.
Address & Map: Gumley Road, Market Harborough, LE16 7RA
The Foxton Locks Inn is set in the heart of the Leicestershire countryside right next to the area’s historic Grade II Listed canal locks, which feature an impressive ten locks and two staircases, making it the largest flight of staircase locks in England. Once you’ve explored the area with your dog, pop into the pub for one of their award-winning real ales. They also serve some cracking food and you’ll be able to dine with your dog by your side in a special section of the restaurant that’s dedicated to dogs—it even has dog-print wallpaper. Make sure you book if you want to eat there on a Sunday because the carvery is very popular! Your lucky dog will get a lovely doggy treat and a bowl of water. When the mercury rises you can take in the views of the barges floating by from the fantastic outdoor seating area.
Address & Map: School Lane, Grantham, NG32 1QR
After a walk around The Vale of Belvoir—a stretch of unspoilt English countryside—dogs and their owners in need of refreshment should pop into The Geese and Fountain. The friendly village pub welcomes dogs throughout the pub, restaurant, and sprawling beer garden, and offers them water and homemade treats on arrival.
The Geese and Fountain was awarded “Leicestershire Pub of the Year” 2017 and “Overall Pub of the Year” 2018 by the Vale of Belvoir branch of the Campaign for Real Ale. All the beers served on the bar are brewed within a 40 mile radius of the pub and their wines are sourced from organic vineyards across the world. They’re just as selective about the produce that goes into their first-rate food—the farmers, brewers, and cheesemakers who supply it were handpicked because they are local or they represent the very best of their trade, or both. The pub also offers B&B accommodation where dogs are welcome to stay for a small extra charge.
Address & Map: Burton Street, Melton Mowbray, LE13 1AE
The oldest pub in Melton Mowbray is both dog-friendly and steeped in history. The character-filled Tudor building dates back to 1327 when it was home to monks, and it was later gifted to Anne of Cleves by Henry VIII as part of her divorce settlement in 1537. It went through a sympathetic conversion and restoration in 1996 and has flagstone floors, exposed timber beams, real fires, and wall tapestries throughout. Just to warn you though—it’s also supposed to be haunted.
The kitchen serves up light lunches, pub classics, some modern dishes, and superb Sunday roasts, all of which is made using produce that’s either from their own allotment or suppliers within a 20-mile radius. Try one of their cask ales or craft G&Ts while your dog enjoys a nice bowl of water and gets acquainted with the other four-legged visitors. Head to its gorgeous beer garden when the sun’s out—it recently won a silver award from ‘East Midlands in Bloom’.
Address & Map: 213 Main Street, Coalville, LE67 1AH
This friendly village local is run by Ben and Jan who want the pub to feel like a home from home. And they’re doing a fantastic job, the whole family including furry members are given a warm welcome here. The cosy pub has a great range of cask ales and premium gins, and it serves traditional, hearty food. It’s popular with walking groups and dog owners who can take advantage of the convenient footpath that goes from the pub’s car park down to the Thornton Reservoir. The three-mile walk around the 150-year-old reservoir takes you past wood carvings and wildlife. The walk takes a little over an hour, but remember to bring your dog’s lead because there’s a short stretch of road at the end.
Address & Map: 21 The Rushes, Loughborough, LE11 5BG
If you like beer and making your dog happy, you’ll love Swan in the Rushes. Your little mate can look forward to meeting lots of four-legged friends like the two pictured above and quench his thirst with a lovely bowl of water. The traditional pub which is part of the Castle Rock family stocks an impressive range of ten cask ales, five traditional ciders, more than 15 craft beers, and over 30 single malt whiskies.
Head up to the Hop Loft on the first floor, and you’ll find a world beer bar, an outside terrace, and a plasma screen TV. The watering hole also has a quiet lounge, a dining room, and a skittle alley, plus it’s been known to throw the odd beer festival!
Address & Map: Hinckley, LE10 1LS
Whether you’re a local or just stopping off at The New Plough Inn while visiting the lovely market town of Hinckley, you’ll be glad to hear that the Edwardian pub is as welcoming to dogs as it is to people. A dog owner herself, landlady Louise Lavender ensures that there’s always a steady supply of water for four-legged customers and the staff are always happy to dole out plenty of cuddles to make them feel special. And should the pups get caught short they have plenty of poo bags too.
The Cask Marque accredited pub serves a great selection of fine cask-conditioned ales, beers, wines, and over 50 gins, and it was chosen as the Hinckley and Bosworth CAMRA Pub of the Year in 2011 and 2012. Have a game of darts, dominoes or table skittles in the games room, relax in the sheltered beer garden or pop down to their charity pub quiz on the last Thursday of the month.
Featured image: The Foxton Locks Inn