As apart of the Fitdog Does series, I explore local dog events, hangouts, and places in and around Los Angeles. After hearing so much about The Dog Cafe, I stopped in one Sunday afternoon.
As I sit in this cafe sipping on an icy latte, I’m being swatted by two little black paws, wondering why I don’t spend all my time and money here. This is not uncommon. People bring their dogs to coffee shops all the time, especially in a town as dog-friendly as Los Angeles. The big difference is, this little dog does not belong to another patron; he does not belong to anybody. This is Jasper. He’s waiting to be adopted. This is why I’m here.
A cool, unique rescue organization
The Dog Cafe is a nonprofit animal rescue and coffee shop located on the corner of Virgil and Silver Lake Blvd, in a quintessential LA strip mall. After opening in the summer of 2016, it made it on the radar of local culture spotlights such as the LA Times and LA Magazine.
Their operation occupies two storefronts. On one side, there’s the retail and coffee shop. On the other is the hangout spot for people to sip and socialize with adoptable pups. Their mission is to revolutionize pet adoption by allowing people to socialize with the adoptable pets outside of an overwhelming, yet conventional, shelter setting.
This is Belle, one of The Dog Cafe’s adoptable pups.
Their team of eight employees helps oversee the retail sales as well as the dog care responsibilities. According to one employee, most of their adoptees come from the Hesperia Animal Shelter, which has a particularly high number of at-risk dogs. At any given time, the Dog Cafe has approximately fifteen dogs in their care. Recently, the Dog Cafe launched a foster program and has started hosting awesome monthly events such as Dog Yoga.
In order to participate in their hour-long doggie hangouts, they recommend first making an online reservation. You’ll have to pay a $15 fee on top of whatever drinks you purchase. But keep in mind this is a nonprofit organization and your donation goes to a great cause!
Simon, the sleepy sweetheart.
As badly as I wanted to take home Jasper, Belle, and Lovey (just three of the many adorable dogs I met upon my visit), I know adopting a dog is a long-term commitment that shouldn’t be taken lightly. And although I won’t be adopting a new pet anytime soon, I might just return for their tasty coffee. Whether you’re considering adoption or simply want to hang out with some doggies, this is an awesome local business to support.