A couple in Orlando, Florida wants to make the dream come true of dog owners who wish they could combine the freedom of an off-leash dog park with the social aspect (and alcohol) of a bar. As reported by Food & Wine, Boozehounds Dog Bar, a dog park and bar, will bring dogs and beer together in a way that's both legal (unlike sneaking alcohol into some parks) and feels like you're really doing something (unlike drinking in your own home).
Food & Wine spoke to Lainie Pekich and Paul Jaszczenski, two entrepreneurs who decided to open the bar after they adopted their German Shepherd, Kaia. "Even when we did find a restaurant [where we could take the dog], Kaia wasn’t happy stuck under a table," Pekich told Food & Wine. "She was hot and miserable. When we took her to a dog park, Paul and I were bored, sweaty, and in need of a cocktail."
So, they figured they would open their own place. But it's not just a bar where dogs are allowed; it's a 2,000 square foot bar on a bunch of land where dogs have plenty of room to play outdoors. The bar itself will be built out of repurposed shipping containers, which is a more sustainable way to build, and there will be an area for dogs to go off-leash, outdoor seating, and a fenced off area for puppies and senior dogs. There will also be dog beer, which Food & Wine describes as "a chicken broth-based liquid served in a beer-like bottle."
This isn't a free for all, though, with dogs running wild while humans drink and watch sports. There are some rules that owners must abide by. An ongoing membership or one-day fee is required if owners want to let their dogs off-leash. Pekich told Food & Wine, "The State of Florida has regulations that require us to keep records of off-leash dogs. Anybody can come to bar and even bring their dog, so long as it’s on a leash. The only ones who need a membership are the owners with dogs who want to run around." A yearly membership is $140 and a day pass is $10.
The FAQ on the Boozehounds website also explains that dogs over eight months must be spayed or neutered, and that for a membership, vaccinations records must be provided.
While you don't have to have a dog to go to Boozehounds and enjoy the booze and the hounds, an issue for some visitors might be the fact that no children are allowed. According to the website, "To promote safety and responsibility, all areas of our establishment are reserved for ages 16 and up." Dogs, drinks, and no kids might sound like the perfect combo for plenty of people, but for those with dogs and babies, it ain't happening.
For those who live in or near Orlando and want to visit Boozehounds, it is expected to open this summer, although an exact date hasn't been given. For updates and the exact location, check out the Boozehounds website here.