10 Qualities of a Bar Dog

Aug 1 / Jennifer Thornburg

But first!
Laws regarding dogs in bars vary by location and jurisdiction. Some areas may have specific regulations that allow or restrict dogs in certain establishments, including bars. It's essential to research and understand the local laws before bringing your dog to a bar. Call ahead!

A calm and polite dog can be a delightful addition to any bar or brewery, creating an enjoyable atmosphere for customers. 
Could your dog be a good bar or brewery dog?

Read below to find out!
1. Friendly and approachable
A good bar dog should be friendly and sociable with both staff and customers. They should enjoy interacting with people and be comfortable in a busy and sometimes noisy environment.

2. Well-trained and polite
It's essential for a bar dog to be well-behaved and obedient. They should respond to basic commands and be well-trained to ensure they don't disturb or disrupt brewery operations.

3. Calm and relaxed

Bar environments can get hectic, especially during peak hours. A good bar dog should be calm and relaxed, able to handle the hustle and bustle without getting anxious or agitated.

What if my dog is worried in public?

If your dog is more of a book club dog, that's A-OK! You can leave them at home.
Just because you are a social butterfly doesn't mean your dog needs to be.

Putting your dog in a situation that is stressful for them will not help them feel better about being your bar-hopping sidekick. In fact, the opposite is probably more accurate.

If you're not sure, try taking them to a less crowded venue on a quiet day.
Is your dog able to settle, or are they hyper-vigilant, straining at the leash, or panting?
See this post: 20 Ways Dogs Communicate Stress.

4. Tolerant of people
Since bars are public spaces, a bar dog should be non-aggressive and tolerant of all kinds of people, including children. The bar is no place for a dog who is worried by attention from people or children running past. 

5. Tolerant of other dogs
If there are other animals around, such as other dogs, a good bar dog should be easygoing and not create conflicts or tensions. They may not love playing with dogs but they should be able to ignore those in the area.

6. Clean and well-groomed
You want your dog to be an ambassador for bar dogs! So, they should look the part. Please don't let your dog track in mud or sand.

7. Good health and vaccinations
It's crucial for a bar dog to be in good health and up-to-date with their vaccinations. This ensures the safety and well-being of your dog, other dogs and your fellow patrons dogs at home.

8. Moderate energy level
A good bar dog should have a moderate energy level. They shouldn't be too hyperactive or too lethargic. The ideal dog will strike a balance, being active and playful when appropriate but also able to relax and nap during quieter times.

9. Awareness of boundaries
A bar dog should be aware of boundaries and not jump on tables, counters, or customers unless invited to do so. They should respect the space of both patrons and staff.

10. Symbol of bar culture
Ultimately, a good bar dog becomes a symbol of the bar's culture and values. Your bar dog may create a memorable experience for patrons, enhancing the overall atmosphere and contributing positively to the bar's reputation. We're not talking breed here. If your dog loves the bar life, and can keep their manners in mind, they are an ambassador for all bar dogs to come!

Owning a Bar Dog Comes with Responsibilities.

Consider all factors
Does the bar allow dogs? Call ahead. It's also essential to consider factors like allergies, phobias, and any potential legal or liability issues before introducing a dog to a bar environment. 

Train your dog!

Don't bring an unruly dog to the bar. If your dog needs some bar manners, we can help! And spread the word so we can see more (well-behaved) dogs at the bar.

Set-up for success

Find a seat away from the hustle and bustle, bring a mat and anything your dog needs to feel comfortable and be successful. 

Be ready to go.

Going out with your dog is similar to taking a baby out on the town. If things go south, you need to be ready to take them out of there. 

Advocate for your dog
Just because your dog is a bar hopper, doesn't mean they don't need some breaks. You can tell well-meaning strangers that your dog doesn't feel like saying hello. Or you can instruct them on how to greet your dog. Take our course to get these skills!

Please use the button below to sign up for our online course.  Get in touch for in-person training at a bar near you!
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