What Makes a Brewery or Bar Truly Dog-Friendly?


Right this way, pupperino


New dog-friendly bars and breweries are opening all the time. That’s great news for those of us that hate to leave our pups at home (and PupPass where our goal is to build the largest network of dog-friendly venues in the US). But what makes a brewery or bar truly dog-friendly? Any place can allow dogs on their patio if they choose (and local regulations allow), but that’s not all it takes to earn the title of being “dog-friendly.” Here are 11 ways that bars, breweries, and restaurants show that they love your doggo as much as you do.

#1 – Staff who love dogs

Not everybody considers themselves a dog person, and that’s okay. The world still needs cat people, lizard lovers, and those who haven’t yet realized that animals are the best. Bars and breweries that aim to be dog-friendly should make it a point to hire servers and other staff who truly love dogs. Nothing can ruin your good time like a waitperson seeming uncomfortable every time they bring you a new drink because they’re afraid of dogs.

#2 – Providing water for pups

It’s always a good idea to pack a collapsible bowl and some water any time you take your pooch around town. However, many dog-friendly bars and breweries offer bowls of water for your pup so that you can relax with your own drink instead of worrying about your dog’s thirst. Plus, it’s just a nice touch to show that you and your pooch are welcome. It’s the little things that make the biggest difference.

Good day to you sir,. This H2O here is awfully refreshing, wouldn’t you say old chap?


#3 – Allowing dogs inside

It’s one thing to allow pups on the patio, but some bars and breweries go the extra mile by allowing well-behaved dogs inside the building. While some days there’s nothing better than a cool breeze on a patio, there are days when it’s just too hot for your pup to relax. On the flip side, cabin fever in the winter can make you want to bring your doggo somewhere warm that’s any place but home. PS- did you know you can search our database for venues that allow dogs inside? Just click on the tag “Dogs Allowed Indoors.”

#4 – Providing food or treats

Nothing makes your dog feel more welcome than being offered a treat when they come with you. Some bars and breweries make their own treats, and others may also offer a dedicated doggy menu to spoil your pooch while you relax and enjoy a brew. It’s nice to give your dog a piece of your burger, but it’s above and beyond to be able to order them their own plate of chicken and rice, salmon and veggies, or unseasoned hamburger made especially for doggie digestion.

#5 – Raising money for dog rescues

Many bars and breweries go beyond loving the dogs of their clients; they also hold fundraisers for local shelters or rescue groups. Next time you’re at your favorite dog-friendly establishment, be sure to check if they have any upcoming events that support dogs in need. You can also check out our monthly newsletters in each city to get a gist of the fido-featured events at your favorite spots.

#6 – Some beers are named after or inspired by dogs

Dog-inspired breweries like Flying Dog, Laughing Dog Brewing, Hair of the Dog Brewing Company, and Big Dog’s Brewing Company have been around for some time now, and are staples of the dog and beer loving community. Check out our Ultimate List of Dog Inspired Beers article for a full rundown of brews involving pups. And props to Avery Brewing for taking it one step further and offering their famous Ellie’s Brown Ale (pictured below) which benefits the Humane Society of Boulder Valley and dogs in need.


Avery Brewing leading the pack with dog-inspired beers that benefit dogs in need.


#7 – Plenty of dog pictures in the bar or on social media

Whether it’s an active Instagram page filled with doggy pics or photos attached to the wall of the brewery or bar, some places show their love of dogs with plenty of puppy pictures. And hey, we’re all in this together, so support your local dog-loving community by including your own pics with the bar or brewery’s tag and instagram handle.

#8 – The patio has plenty of space

Whether a venue is dog-friendly indoors or just outdoors on the patio, the best dog-friendly venues have plenty of space for you and your pooch. When adding listings to our dog-friendly directory, we make sure the patio has at least a half dozen tables and extra room for dogs to lay down underneath and around tables. There’s nothing more uncomfortable for you or pup if they feel crowded or are constantly in the way of patrons and staff.

#9 – Dogs can run around off leash

Even better than a dog-friendly patio is a large outdoor off-leash area that allow for dogs to run free and enjoy their own social time. Oftentimes these spaces are on artificial turf or sand which makes for easy cleanup and a comfortable terrain for your pup’s paws. These outdoor off-leash dog runs are a great way for you and your dog to socialize at the same time. Just be sure your dog passes the patio etiquette test and is comfortable being around unfamiliar people and other dogs.

Meet me at the club., the K9 club.


#10 – Special events that are dog-friendly

Some bars and breweries offer “yappy hour” events that might be for fun and socialization or may be an opportunity to raise money for a rescue group. Either way, meeting other people who love their pooches and pints as much as you do can be a great way for both you and your pup to make new friends.

#11 – The venue’s owners are dog owners themselves

Many brewery and bar owners are dog-friendly simply because they also own and love dogs. Here at PupPass, we’ve visited dozens of dog-friendly venues and found owners who not only have dogs themselves, but allow them to hang around the brewery, offering a familiar face to patrons that visit frequently. What a great gig for dogs and pups that get to be their venue’s CDO (Chief Dog Officer).


Tank here is the CDO of Anthem Brewing Company in Oklahoma City.

(H/T: Chewy, DRAFT)