Cat cafes are a dime a dozen in many Asian countries but a dog cafe that specializes in the well-being of huskies are hard to come by. Fortunately Bangkok has one such a husky cafe called True Love cafe, founded and managed by former husky breeders, Neverland Siberians.
True Love cafe was the main reason why I visited Bangkok this time round. There are two or three slots a day at the cafe (except Monday) and reservations are highly recommended. I made my reservations a month prior to the visit via email with cafe owner Choty.
The cafe is located in the back portion of the owner's house and attached to a spacious covered compound where the husky interaction happens. The house-cafe is at the end of a long narrow road and its elusive location gives the illusion and peacefulness of being in the countryside rather than the capital city of Thailand.
Our slot was at 1230pm and we were there on time only to find we were the first to arrive in the 1230pm slot. The back room facing the compount where the cafe was roomy, brightly litted with a clear ceiling and incredibly homey. It was the type of cafe I wouldn't mind sitting there for long hours just reading with a cup of hot coffee.
The outdoor seating area too was nicely done up and shaded with fans and trees to keep it cooling in the Bangkok humidity.
Choty herself personally saw us to our reserved table with recommendations of what to eat. There is no fixed entrance fee to play with the huskies but it's mandatory for everyone to order from the set menu. Visitors can select from either the full set (meal +dessert +drink, 350baht), dessert set (dessert +drink, 275baht) or a special set (BBQ ribs + dessert + drink, 390 baht). There are also snacks to munch on.
Usually most patrons will eat before playing with the dogs but many would find themselves too excited to eat. I know I was which was why I ordered the dessert set and opted for their caramel chocolate cake and refreshing sala syrup with lime and soda drink. I quite enjoyed the caramel chocolate cake because it wasn't all that sweet.
My friend ordered the spaghetti with bacon set and proclaimed that it was surprisingly quite good. Tossed with basil leaves, the spaghetti was generously topped with bacon bits that added flavour to the simple but delicious dish.
After playing with the huskies, my friend ordered her dessert, choosing the popular San Franscico Golden Gate ice-cream cake which was actually Thai milk tea flavoured. It was easy to see why it was popular because really, who doesn't like Thai milk tea ice-cream cake.
When we were done with our food, we were given a sealed packet of plastic shoes to wear. So we left our shoes under our table, slipped on the plastic shoes which we learnt was for the husky's hygienic well-being and headed outside.
We were instructed by Choty to wash our hands and sanitize them before entering the compound. It was double-gated to ensure that the huskies do not escape and should only be open with the staff's help.
And finally it was playtime. The huskies are divided into three packs which are released at different times as to avoid overwhelming and wearing them out. The older matured ones were released first. Save for brindle 9-month old Japanese Akita, Fushigi and a mix Maltese, Momo, we were graced with the energetic company of 12 beautiful huskies for the entire one hour.
There is a set of rules to abide to when interacting with the huskies like no grabbing them from behind, no flash photography, no trying to tempt them with leaves, no food... but other than that, it was a relaxing experience that involved us sitting on the clean compound with the huskies under the fans and simply patting them. As it was only my group and a family for that slot, we didn't have to fight for the huskies, Fushigi or Momo's attention.
The huskies were very well adapted to interacting with visitors and were clearly well taken cared off by Choty and her team of capable staff. It was quickly apparently how much her huskies doted on her and how much she loved her furkids as she sat in the compound with us, taking questions about her beloved dogs. Only a former certified husky breeder and a true dog lover would take the effort to understand and train this beautiful breed of dogs.
Her huskies had come from Russia and American and were of champion lineage with ages ranging from 10 to 4 years old. Choty has gone the extra mile to ensure their well-being in the ever hot Bangkok by providing them with sheltered enclosure and a separate room with air-con. The dogs are also brushed and checked regularly by her team.
All the huskies had their own quirky personality and if I was based in Bangkok, I know I would be a frequent visitor to True Love cafe to get to know each and every dog there. But if there were two things the huskies loved, they would be munching on ice to combat the heat....
Aiyo... so cute! It was like they knew what a selfie was and how to post for it.
When our time was up, we retreated back into the cafe to wind down and to commemorate the experience with a souvenir or two. Upon request, Choty even helped us call a tuk tuk to drop us back at the closest BTS station. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to True Love cafe as the staffs were friendly, helpful and most importantly cares for the dogs. The huskies and their companions are a joy to be with and I think this would be a permanent must do on my next visit.
The recommended way of getting to True Love cafe is to either take the BTS train to Ari station and take a tuk tuk to the cafe. It cost us only 40baht for the five minutes ride to the cafe. Likewise going back. Walking is a definite no as it would a long hot and potentially dangerous walk to the end of the road. Alternatively, one can just cab it to the location. Not many cab and tuk tuk drivers know about the place so having a map or indication at hand would be helpful.
For more husky photos, check out my Facebook album here.
True Love Cafe, Bangkok
Add: 153 Soi Ari Samphan 2, Phahon Yothin Rd, Samsen Nai, Phaya Thai, Bangkok, Thailand
For reservations please call 090-101-9669 or 085-908-2777 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also like and follow them on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/neverlandsiberians