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14 Oct 13

Doggie Day Trip ~ North Fork! ...

by Nancy E. Hassel, LIPetPlace.com

Doggie Day Trip – the NoFo! (That’s North Fork of Long Island!)

If you have yet to visit the North Fork (NoFo) of Long Island with your pup – you are missing out!  The NoFo is the perfect day-trip destination if you are looking to do wine tasting, pumpkin or apple picking, a walk on the beach or to enjoy lunch or dinner in one of the quaint towns with your dog!

Recently I took my dog Max, who is 12 years old on a doggie day trip to the NoFo for all of the above.  My cousin came with me and we had such a relaxing day, and Max had a great time exploring some old haunts and new ones too – pretty dog-gone good for a senior pup!

We first went to Martha Clara Vineyards in Riverhead – and it is pet friendly, leashed of course, and offers some of the most spectacular grounds to walk along.  You can bring a picnic lunch and hang outside at one of the many tables or picnic benches provided, and sip some MCV wine as your dog chills out.  I prefer to walk Max around the grounds, being respectful of all the beautiful farm animals they have there (goats, sheep, turtles, cows, horses and more), and then back to picnic area to enjoy wine and cheese.  This way you get some of that puppy (or senior dog) energy out first.

Meet n greet!

After an hour or so, we headed to Love Lane in Mattituck – to go where else, but Love Lane Kitchen for lunch.  They have a lovely little outdoor patio next to the restaurant where we could sit with Max and enjoy a delicious lunch.  After lunch we walked around Love Lane visited some of the shops (please note: I didn’t bring Max into the stores, but there is a pet boutique on Love Lane you can visit with your pup).

Our next stop, the bay beach of course, so Max could dip his toes in the water!  There is a dog friendly beach called Bailey’s Beach in Mattituck, but we actually just drove to a bay beach in Jamesport and just stopped there for a little while, there were no ‘no dog’ signs and since it was off season no one was there – perfect.

Love it!  Max stayed on his leash – a good recomendation to do so with your dog, and be respectful of the surrounding neighborhood and beaches, and obey any signs posted.  We then headed to one of the many local pumpkin farms to get pumpkins, mums, sunflowers and a few farm stand veggies that are in season.

There are so many things to do, see and enjoy with your dog on the NoFo and people are very friendly.  It is doable for a day trip, for sure.  I am baffled when I hear of people that have been born and raised on LI – but have never been to the NoFo – it’s crazy! :)  Dogs like to get out and explore new areas and see new things – the NoFo is the perfect fall getaway, for a daycation, that is not too far away.  You and your pup will be so relaxed by the time you get back home and the sceenary is beautiful no matter where you go on the North Fork.

But if you want to spend a weekend there – lucky for us there are now two hotels that I know of that are also pet friendly close to the NoFo!  The first is the Hyatt East End in Riverhead – they are pet friendly for dogs up to 50lbs and have beautiful accomodations.  Located right next to the Long Island Aquarium, in Riverhead village, you can walk your dog along the beautiful river front steps from the hotel.

The second hotel is the Hotel Indigo East End also in Riverhead, but closer to Calverton and also offer pet friendly accomodations.

And if you are looking for a dog trainer or pet sitter while on the NoFo, contact Dawn Bennett of North Fork School of Dog Training – she might even give you some info on places to go with your dog that I haven’t mentioned above.

And some tips if you do take a Doggie Day Trip:

  • Go during the week if you can, it is less crowded and that means less traffic.
  • Bring supplies for your dog: water, food, pet first aid kit (just in case), poop bags to pick up.
  • Be sure to stop and walk your dog and let him or her do his business along the way (and of course clean up after your dog).
  • Ask if you can bring your dog onto the property of a vineyard (although most are dog friendly), and the same for any of the pumpkin/apple farms.  Be courteous and know your dog!  If your pup is going to freak out if he sees a cow – be sure to have something with your to distract him (think high value treats, toys, ball, etc.)
  • If your dog is not used to long car rides, start taking him for some rides each day longer and longer that lead up to a daycation trip, so he gets used to it.
  • Bring an extra leash and collar with you – and be sure to have up-to-date ID tags on him, just in case.
  • And most of all have fun, take lots of pictures and enjoy!

Another favorite spot is Greenport, a photo of Max there from a few years ago!  To see More Pictures of our NoFo Doggie Day trip, CLICK HERE!

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