The Black Dog Cookie House offers group hikes across the North Shore, which are one hour in length. There are only two handlers (Micki and Adam, the owners), as we have chosen to remain a small family company; so we both get to know your dogs intimately, and you always know who has your dog. We pick up the dogs and drop them off, rinse, towel dry, give them fresh water, leave on music and lights as needed or requested, and leave a note for you or text about your dog’s outing. We only go deep into the more secluded trails, trying to avoid any contact with other people, so that the dogs can have maximum fun without disturbing anyone. We go on countless trails all over the North Shore, from Mt Seymour to Cypress Falls. We never go to open public areas such as Ambleside or Bridgman Park. The dogs are with us anywhere from 1.5-3 hours, depending on the location of the hike and the pick-up and drop-off order; but we are always one hour minimum in the woods. We offer morning and afternoon hikes, and for those with really long days, the option is there for 2 outings; for this they’re generally with us for 5-7 hours.
We have chosen to use mini-vans only, so that we can be as close to our charges as possible, and to make sure that even any senior or stiff dogs can get into the vehicle easily. Our vans are comfortably arranged with blankets and towels, and there is a coveted back couch for tired dogs to lounge on. There is a barrier between the back and the front for your dog’s safety. Dogs who prefer to be separate from the other dogs in the van can have their own personal space. There’s heat and air conditioning for the dogs’ comfort.
The Black Dog Cookie House specializes in group dog walks on the North Shore. Our many years of experience and knowledge of the bylaws allow us to take up to 6 dogs at a time. When first integrating a new dog into the group, we start with just a few dogs, and then build up from there, depending on the new dog’s comfort level. We do not take dogs off-leash until we feel they are ready, and that they respond well to us.
We go deep into the trails all ove the North Shore, so as to meet as little people along the way as possible; if we do hear people coming, if possible we head the opposite way or take a different trail. We are courteous and sensitive to the public, whilst ensuring that the dogs have the maximum amount of fun running and playing. There are rules to the groups which every dog has to abide by. We only accept social dogs, and don’t allow aggression. Our approach to training and handling is based on a gentle, calm and patient leadership module.
Our walks are a wonderful opportunity for the dogs not only to experience a fun hike, but also to be able to learn important socialization skills and get the best exercise of all: playing with other dogs, or just enjoying the company of other dogs in a healthy and stimulating forest setting. This also makes it a great learning, as well as a fun and positive, experience for puppies (4 months and older). We can accommodate older or slower dogs too, as we simply adjust the trail and our pace, according to each group’s needs. The one hour walk length is a perfect time for all sizes and age groups.
Once we have talked on the phone, and have established that we might be a good fit for both your dog and your needs, Adam and Micki will both come to meet you and your dog at your house, to get a feel for each other and chat while your dog gets more comfortable with us. Then we take your dog out on a walk, with only 2-3 new buddies already, and assess him/her at the same time. This initial consultation and walk are free. At the time of our first meeting, we will have an information sheet for you to fill out about your dog, so that we have all the pertinent information on file. We also have a standard waiver for you to sign at that time. References are always available at any time. There are several veterinarians and other pet professionals on the North Shore that have come to know and trust us over the years, and do recommend us.
One dog for a 1 hour hike
2 dogs from the same household on a 1 hour hike
Two 1 hour hikes for 1 dog on the same day