Is this camp for children and families?
No, the camp is adult only as are most dog vacation camps. All campers must be 18 years of age or above.
What are arrival/departure times?
Check-in is 12 noon (no earlier please). All activities begin at 1pm and lunch is provided. Departure is by 4pm (no extensions, please use local accommodations). Please note that you are responsible for leaving the lodging in the same condition as when you arrived.
What happens upon arrival at Camp?
When you arrive to the Farm, we direct you to a parking spot. You will need to visit the check-in table to sign-in. After you unload your bags behind your parked vehicle, you may head on through the front gate with your dogs where you will be greeted by staff. Meanwhile, we will tranport your belongings directly to your lodging location and move your vehicle to the our parking lot where you will have access to it during the week if you need it. Because activities start soon after arrival and your baggage is being transported, we recommend you prep a knapsack or tote bag with some handy essentials (sunblock, hat, treat pouch, appropriate footwear, etc.) to have on hand.
What should I bring?
Please bring your dog's food, toys, blanket, crate, collar, leash and whatever else you normally travel with. We will provide poop scoops and waste receptacles on the property. Fresh water is always available. Please also bring proof of your dog's rabies vaccination or titer if you didn't already provide it with your registration. If you are camping, please bring your own sleeping bag and towels. A handy list of items to bring is available on our Camper Info page.
Can I bring more than one dog?
Certainly. As long as you can handle multiple dogs, there is no limit. We have large crates available for use in the Barn so that you may crate one dog while working with another during a sport session.
My dog can be aggressive towards other dogs, can we still come to Camp?
Dogs with aggression toward other dogs or people may not be accepted in the Camp. Please inquire if you feel that your dog could attend, but need special help in socialization. Many undersocialized dogs have benefited from attending Camp and we can work out ways to make the time here productive for both you and your dog. But please keep in mind that our Camp is open to dog lovers and their dogs and like any place where dogs and people come together, it is important that the environment is safe for all who are participating. It is your responsibility as the guardian to manage your dog, not that of GHF. If your dog displays aggression to people or dogs, you may be asked to leave. Refunds will not apply.
Is the entire property fenced in?
The area around the main barn, where lectures, social, and dining activities take place (approximately 2-acres) is completely fenced in. The rest of the property that houses the trails and locations for sporting activities is not as it covers 175 acres over varied terrain. The property boundaries do have some barrier fencing near roads to help better contain off-leash dogs. Some campers whose dog(s) do not have a recall and are very prone to wander off should keep their dogs on leash. And, when crossing the country roads between various areas of the Farm, it is wise to leash your dog.
Can dogs really be off-leash the entire time?
Dogs can be off-leash – most of the time! We do have a few exceptions.
During lectures and presentations that take place in the barn, an enclosed space, we do require you to leash your dogs. After all the sport activities, the dogs need down time and can take some time off during lectures. Additionally, many teachers move around the room for demonstrations and dogs can become reactive. It's far easier for them to nap as you discover new things related to canines.
Some areas of the property are accessed by crossing a small local roads -- because of this we ask do you to leash your dog(s) then. We post signs to remind you when to use a leash for everyone and every dog’s safety! During group trail walks, it is also safest to leash dogs as they are going through the gates since a large group of dogs all rushing to exit one area into another, can cause conflicts. Once on the trails, they are all off leash again.
The Farm property covers 175 acres across varied terrain. The property boundaries do have barrier fencing, but it is not always continuous because of natural barriers such as the Creek or heavy vegetation. While a majority of campers are very comfortable having their dogs off leash as their dogs are accustomed to being off leash, don’t wander off or have a decent recall, there are also campers who choose to have their dogs on leash. You know your dog the best!
How do dogs who have never been off-leash handle all the freedom?
Most dogs actually do beautifully, sticking with other dogs on trail walks and closely to their person since it's a new territory for them. As dogs gain more confidence where they are, when in a new place, they often begin exploring further away from their person. People sometimes feel most comfortable leashing their dogs at different times during their stay to reinforce the Farm is a place to visit, not race off and explore. However, to leash or not to leash, is a completely personal decision based on your dog's training. It is always best to leash any visiting dog when you are near roads of course.
What is your spay/neuter policy for dogs coming to Camp?
We only allow one unneutered male dog per each Camp session. Must be discussed and approved prior to registration. Female dogs in heat are not allowed at Camp.
Where does my dog stay if I need to go somewhere on my own?
You are responsible for bringing a crate if you leave your dog in your tent or in a shady area on the property. Water, food and toys should be provided if that's what you normally do when leaving your dog. We also provide crates in the Barn for use during the week.
Do you have hook-up for RV electric? And, what about toilets and showers?
We do have electric for those attendees coming in their own RV's. We have private showers, vanities and toilets in two locations, by the Barn and near the pavilion behind the RVs. For details please see our Lodging, Meals & Facilities page.
Can I arrive late in the week?
We understand if your schedule brings you to Camp a day late but we think you'll enjoy the entire vacation more if you can arrive at the beginning. We have found that integrating your dog into an already existing pack is not easy if you come later in the week, so it is best, for your dog's benefit, to join the group at the start of the Camp.
What happens in the evenings?
Each evening offers a sumptuous meal in the cozy 200 year old barn, can be followed by a talk, movie night or simply time to relax. Often we head through the meadow to our campfire area for a night of stargazing and listening to the night sounds.
What kind of food is served?
Delicious catered food will include humanely raised grain-fed poultry and beef. Vegetarian, vegan and other special dietary needs can be accommodated, if we know your needs ahead of time. At GHF, we honor dogs as well as all animals by offering food choices that do not encourage factory farming or cruel processing methods. If you prefer something else, there are local restaurants available that we can recommend. Water, lemonade, ice tea and sodas, coffee and tea are always available. We also offer a wide array of snacks between meals for when you need that pick me up in between activities.
What's the weather like in late summer?
Early September in upstate New York can be delightful with temps in a range from 70-80 degrees. Evenings are cool averaging 50-55 degrees. Some nights can dip into the 40s!
Please be aware that strong thunderstorms do pass through the area. If you know your dog(s) are sensitive to thunder you should come prepared with the items you usually need to calm your dogs to help them through the storms. Some suggestions would be melatonin (available in any health food store), ThunderShirts, and crates with covers.
If we do have a rainy day, then activities will be taken indoors and/or suspended, as need be. We obviously cannot provide refunds for inclement weather... but we'll do everything possible to make your vacation a relaxing and enjoyable one!