America’s first dog café opened in Los Angeles this week, and while watching the video of people cuddling up and having coffee with rescue dogs is inspiring, knowing that those dogs were once destined to be euthanized is even more inspiring.
News of the opening of America’s first dog café is spreading rapidly across the globe as more and more people are sharing the amazing way to help rescue dogs. “The cafe had its grand opening on Thursday and has already been completely booked through April 12,” reports UPI on April 8.
Visitors to the dog café need a reservation. While at the café, customers can buy their hot drink and then head to an adjacent, puppy-filled room to spend quality time with dogs that are available for adoption. The cost is $10 and requires signing a liability form. Even before visiting the café, customers can check out what canines are looking for a forever home on The Dog Café’s website.
Dog lovers who are unable to adopt, the café is offering having a great time with dogs:
“The Dog Cafe’s mission is to revolutionize dog adoption by reinventing the way people connect with rescues who need homes. The Dog Cafe offers a comfortable and fun space for humans and dogs to hang out with each other, away from overcrowded shelters, which can provoke fear and aggression in perfectly adoptable pups. In addition to helping worthy pups find homes, we also offer the opportunity for people unable to have pets of their own to spend quality time with furry friends (and vice versa) without the commitment of adoption.”
The Dog Café is located on 240 N. Virgil Ave (Unit 13) in Los Angeles and is open Tuesdays to Sundays between 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Reservations are “highly recommended” by the Dog Café because the needs of the dogs available for adoption is the first priority.
While all dogs available for adoption are listed on the Dog Café’s website, they are not there like some business merchandise. If a dog has some more important things to do, he or she might not be at the café. The dogs are in loving foster care and their well-being is the first priority.
Finding Foster care for dogs in need is an additional feature of the Dog Café, and anyone willing to support a dog in need might want to check out the Dog Café Foster webpage.
“Can’t get enough of our dogs? The Dog Cafe is now seeking volunteers to foster our rescues after business hours. By becoming a foster for The Dog Cafe, you’ll provide a warm home for a pup to sleep and spend some quality time with you, without the full commitment of 24-hour care (our dogs get plenty of playtime and socialization at The Dog Cafe during the day.) Fosters and their entire household also receive complimentary admission to The Dog Cafe!”
Reading the description of the 14 rescue dogs currently in the care of the Dog Café shows how much dogs can develop once they leave the shelter and have an opportunity to interact with people.
“At 15, Poodle mix Oreo is our oldest pup here, but you wouldn’t know it from his demeanor – he’s usually the first at the door to greet visitors and is always up and about. He is fully blind, but has a great sense of direction and amazing hearing that help him get around just fine (while he occasionally does bump into things, it doesn’t faze him at all!). He loves people (and especially getting pet) and is easygoing with other dogs.”
In regard to what kind of dogs The Dog Café is taking care of, the website writes the following:
“Our #1 goal is to give abandoned dogs a chance to find the best homes possible. We focus on rescuing dogs who have been at the shelter the longest due to health or behavioral issues and are at the highest risk of being euthanized. While L.A. shelters are doing some great things to save animals, the full capacity of them makes them difficult environments for dogs to be happy. By spending time at The Dog Cafe, our dogs experience positive socialization (both with dogs and humans), playtime and affection, and are put on the right path to a forever home. In short, no, the dogs don’t work for us – we work for them!”
In regard to why The Dog Café opened in Los Angeles, cafe owner Sarah Wolfgang shared the following:
“I actually grew up in Korea and I frequented a lot of dog cafés there and I really got involved in animal rescue work there. And when I came here, I visited a shelter within the first month that I was here. I realized that there was such a greater intake of dogs than there were adoptions. And I was like, what’s a good way to combat this? And so I was like, why not bring a little bit of home back from Korea here but implement the dog adoption aspect of things as well.”
After this week’s opening of The Dog Café in Los Angeles, people were asking whether they can bring their own dogs to the cafe to meet any future canine addition to the family: “That is our goal for the future, but until we can work out a way for this to be 100% city-approved, it’s unfortunately not a current possibility. For now, we are happy to arrange outdoor meetings between your own dogs and Dog Cafe dogs you might be interested in adopting.”