Visiting the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary in Cochrane!


The Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary, home to more than 35 wonderous wolfdogs, sits in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains and is just a quick drive from Banff National Park.

This sanctuary gives you the opportunity to learn about and observe these beautiful wolfdogs, and even interact with them by sharing treats and pats.

The Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary goes beyond providing a safe haven for displaced wolfdogs, with a focus on spreading awareness and knowledge about these majestic pups. Enjoy a sanctuary walk or interactive tour to learn all you need to know about wolfdogs in Canada, all while watching impressive dog tricks and meeting furry friends!

Whether you are visiting Banff or enjoying the nearby city of Calgary, the interactive learning experience offered by the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary should be added to every animal lovers bucket list. Here’s all you need to know about visiting.

Getting There

The Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary sits on 160 acres of land near Cochrane, Alberta. This must-see sanctuary is a quick drive from many Canadian Rockies hotspots, so there is no reason to miss out on a wolfdog experience during your Rocky Mountain visit.

If visiting the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary from Banff National Park, the drive is as scenic as it is simple. The Trans-Canada Highway winds you through the mountains of Banff and Canmore and into the foothills of Kananaskis Country. Once you exit the highway, the Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary is just one turn away. This direct route to the Sanctuary from Banff makes navigating the mountains in your rental car easy!

The Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary has ample parking on site. Even if you are taking your 30-foot RV for a Rocky Mountains road trip, you will easily find a parking space for your rig in their parking lot.

The Tours

The Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary is not only a permanent home for 35 wolfdogs and a foster home for many more, but it also provides visitors the chance to learn about and interact with these impressive animals. This sanctuary offers three different experiences: sanctuary walks, introductory tours, and interactive tours. Read on to find out which experience is right for you!

The Sanctuary Walk Tour

  • Admission Cost:
    • General: $23 per person
    • Youth (6-11yrs): $13 per person
  • Availability: Thursday – Monday, all year round
  • Age Requirement: 6 years and up

The Sanctuary Walk is a self-guided walk through the Wolfdog Sanctuary where you can observe and admire the wolfdogs at your own pace. Using the gravel path that winds through the sanctuary, you can see all of the different enclosures and learn about each dog from the interpretive signage placed throughout the walk. This experience is the least interactive of the three tours offered by the Yamuska Wolfdog Sanctuary.

This walk is not only the cheapest option, but it is also the most convenient if you’re visiting the sanctuary at the last minute! There is no reservation required for the sanctuary walk; you can simply show up and purchase your tickets on-site. This walk does not have a capacity limit, so you are always guaranteed a spot upon arrival.

The main perk of this walk is that there is no time limit – you can enjoy the sanctuary and the wolfdogs for as long as you please. With this being the least interactive tour, this is a great option for anyone feeling hesitant about meeting the wolfdogs up close and personal. Simply enjoy the beauty of the dogs from behind the fence, while using the interpretive signage to learn the story of each one!

One thing to keep in mind about this experience is that not all of the wolfdogs enjoy being in the spotlight. Some of the wolfdogs are quite timid and like to stay hidden amongst the trees and long grass, making it tough to spot them. Though a lot of the dogs don’t mind the attention from visitors, there is no guarantee that you’ll be able to spot them all!

If you are eager to learn all there is to know about wolfdogs from a knowledgeable guide, or you want the chance to get closer to the wolfdogs, one of the more interactive tours might be for you!

The Intro Tour

  • Admission Cost: $37 per person
  • Availability: Thursday – Monday, all year round
  • Tour Times: 10:45am, 12:15pm, 2:15pm, 3:45pm
  • Age Requirement: 10 years and up

The Intro Tour is a guided experience that takes you inside of a wolfdog enclosure, where you can get a close-up view of the wolfdogs from a viewing platform! This tour gives you an introduction to wolfdogs through a 30-minute presentation, as well as time to ask your guide, a wolfdog expert, any questions you may have.

Not only is this tour more informative than the sanctuary walk, but the viewing platform gives you an unobstructed view of the pack.

Seeing the dogs up close is a major perk of the Intro Tour, and you are even given a chance to toss treats to them. This an exciting way to interact with the wolfdogs, and it also guarantees the dogs come out of the shadows of the trees to socialize with you.

Once your time inside the enclosure and with your guide is done, you are welcome to enjoy the Sanctuary Walk to check out other enclosures and see the other wolfdogs who live here.

If you are eager to get an uninterrupted view of the wolfdogs and talk wolfdog facts with an expert, this is a great tour. Just be sure to book this tour in advance – though they do accept walk-ins, the tour sizes are limited. Book your tour before arrival to ensure a space on this exciting and educational tour.


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