Fisher Answers Questions

What is the refundable pet deposit?

For first time visiting dogs, there is a $100 refundable pet deposit per cabin, which is returned to your people by check within 10 days following your visit if there hasn’t been an accident in the house, anything chewed, or any damage. In the event of damage, the office will call your people within 48 hours to let them know that someone was not on their best behavior and the cost is to be deducted from the deposit or charged. If there has been no damage, the deposit is waived on subsequent visits unless you have a new dog in your family. Regardless of whether a deposit has been applied or not, your people are still responsible for any damage done to or in a cabin whether by four or two- legged guests.

Is there a limit to how many dogs can stay in a cabin?

Yes, there is a limit, and we do deal with multiple dogs on a case by case basis. Two dogs per cabin are included in the price of the cabin. There is a $25 extra dog fee for each additional dog in a cabin. Our “rule of paw “ is that you can have up to one dog per hand in the cabin. If there are more than two dogs, our main concern is consideration of other guests and their dogs regarding pack barking and pack behavior.  That being said, we also consider the wear and tear on a cabin’s yard when allowing multiple dogs in a cabin. Sometimes it may be necessary to book a cabin with a larger yard if multiple dogs will be using it. Management reserves the right to redirect in that situation.

What shots do you require dogs to have?

One of the things that makes Barkwells such a haven is that we do our best to ensure every dog is safe for other dogs and people to play with. We ask that all our visiting friends are updated on rabies, parvo, and are current on their preventative flea & tick treatments.  Oh – and because we’re not getting boarded, but instead get to hang out with our people in our own cabins, you don’t need a Bordetella shot like you would for a kennel. No need for a dog flu shot, either. 

The receipt from your last V-E-T visit usually states what shots your dog received and when they are next due. That works fine for us. We do accept titers, or, if your dog has particular health issues, a note from the vet stating that the dog is safe to be around other dogs and vice versa. 

Is there a vet close by for emergencies?

VET?! Did someone say vet?! Just the thought of it has got me panting!  But look, I understand humans are somewhat forward thinking.  So in the unfortunate case that you do need a V-E-T, we’ve got a couple just a short car ride away. Dr. Tim Emery at Vista Falls Vet is located only about 2 miles away from Mills River and you can always call after hours. He’ll let you know if he can see you or send you to MedVet Emergency Vet or Western Carolina Regional Animal Hospital, both open 24/7. Your cabin notebook contains more detailed information. 

In Brevard,  Dr. Ann Davis of Riversong Veterinary Clinic has a holistic, integrative practice within a 10 minute drive, or refer to Western Carolina Regional for after hours emergencies.

Does it snow and if so when ?

That’s the cold, white stuff that’s fun to race around and roll in, right? That stuff falls occasionally between Halloween and Easter. I think it usually happens on a Tuesday, but my days kind of run together.  My people are not so great at predicting it weeks and months out, which is why we have the weather posted in the top right corner of the homepage. Lots of cabins are available in the winter, so if it looks like it is going to snow, give us a call (my people will answer. I try to help but I’m still having trouble navigating a smart phone without thumbs, so I mostly stick to the welcome wagon). They will say “come on” or “it’s over a foot – we wouldn’t advise traveling”. Even if it is not snowing at Barkwells, you can still get to snow from here. Check out Catalootchee and Wolf Ridge ski areas – they usually have snow and you can get detailed weather information on their websites.

 How high is the fence? Can dogs get out if they want to?

The perimeter fence is 5-6 feet high. The staff do regular checks of the fence just to make sure no one is digging in or out (party poopers!) As far as most of the other dogs and I are concerned, there is too much fun inside the fence to think about trying to get outside of it. That’s why our people always say “Dogs must be supervised when on the grounds” and “Keep all gates closed at all times”. Otherwise we could come and go and visit all the other cabins and dogs and see what kind of treats are in their houses and even zip out the gate while a car is going through – again, party poopers!  There is an electronic, push button gate system with two gates, so please have your people be patient and wait for one gate to close before opening another. Oh, there is also a gate outside the front door at Bo’s Hideaway and Fisher’s Cabin  – they lead to the world, so your people will want to remember to keep those closed, too.

Can dogs swim in the pond?

YES! YES! YES! Especially if there’s a ball in the pond – that’s the best time to swim. And we even let people swim in the pond, but they should stay out of our way…especially if there’s a ball in the pond. And definitely, NO DIVING! There is even a paddleboat  (people life vests are on the barn porch or can be requested at the office). It is easy to walk in and out at the beach if you are the timid type (but I prefer to take a flying leap off the banks). The pond is tested every year for cleanliness and has fish for catch and release, as long as you make sure no hooks are left behind where we can get into them. Hooks in my paws? No thank you! The one thing that is weird is that in the winter the pond water gets hard and sometimes the ball rolls out onto the pond without splashing. Then I get yelled at not to follow it into the pond, which is hard to do, but my people say that it’s very important!!

Where do dogs do their business?

When nature calls, we must answer, right? That’s why there are DOGIPOT waste bags at every cabin so your people can pick up after you. The used bags can go in the trash can at your cabin or in one the green DOGIPOT receptacles located around the property. There are also bags at the DOGIPOT stations in case your people forgot to bring one with them. With acres to cover, it is important for your people to keep an eye on where and when and clean it up, otherwise other guests or dogs may step in it before staff can find it and clean up. So, in consideration of yourself and others, please have your people clean up after you. You can go where you need to, but please not in the gardens. We want our flowers and vegetables to grow and thrive without being trampled by two or four feet.

Are there bears nearby?

Bears are common in Western North Carolina, but quite rare in our specific area. So we have to keep busy chasing the occasional bunnies and keeping those pesky squirrels away from the bird feeders.

Can we feed the goats? 

YES! The goats are boring vegetarians (not meat lovers like us) and love greens. They are watching their waistlines, so please limit foods to lettucy things with no calories and watch out for things that make them bloaty. What makes a goat bloat? (I do love good rhymes, and rhetorical questions – like who’s a good boy?! But I digress.) There is a sign with a list of good vs. dangerous goat snacks  on the fence at their pen, but if you have any questions, just ask at the office.  

What are the big bird houses on poles with fences around them?

Every year, purple martins migrate from South America all the way up the east coast east of the Mississippi. They appear in March and stay until August and it is great to encourage them and enjoy their flying antics. They like to be out in the open near water and are instrumental in containing the insect population. They are not afraid of people or dogs and may swoop close when babies are in the nest, but they won’t attack. The fence is to give the fledglings a chance to survive until they can fly off. 

What kind of birds are in the small birdhouses?

Hopefully those are bluebirds. If you see a starling in there it is ok to bark and scare them off, but don’t eat any babies as they come out of nests!

What about bees? 

During the summer, there are fruits in the trees near Snickers’ cabin. When they fall on the ground, bees like to get in them. They are honeybees and we encourage their activity here.  You can have the fruit if you get it before the bees do. Otherwise the goats also love the fruit!

In the springtime, we are visited by big, fat carpenter bees. They are essential pollinators for wild and wonderful flora AND and they don’t sting. They like the log cabins just as much as we do, so we try to keep them away from the cabins with an all natural almond oil and a natural fogging deterrent.

Yellow jackets are also around in the summer sometimes. They nest in the ground and are hard to see, but if you step in a nest or get near them, you’ll know it!  Please call the office if you come across a nest.

Yikes, snakes?

Being as we are in the country in a healthy environment, snakes do live in the area, too.  Mostly you’ll see black snakes and some Carolina water snakes. Both are beneficial, but if you see one and don’t like snakes or are unsure what kind of snake it is, call the office and staff will remove it.


If you have questions that I haven’t answered here, please feel free to contact us so my people can answer them for you.