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The Viewpoint: Le Doggy Café

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Le Doggy Café, which first opened in January 2015, is a Montreal café that allows you to eat in the presence of your dog. Located on the corner of Avenue du Mont-Royal Est and Avenue Papineau, this unique spot is a bring-your-own-dog café that offers enticing vegetarian and vegan dishes as well as drinks and desserts. 

When patrons first walk into the café, there is a small wooden gate that blocks the dogs on the inside from leaving when new customers come in. The bright yellow flowers and bathroom doors plastered with bright red fire hydrants keep the perfect setting for a dog. The décor is quirky with mismatching chairs, tables and wallpaper. The walls are decorated with framed pictures of dogs that have visited the café before, embuing the café with a homey aesthetic. Overall, there is an incredibly laid back atmosphere that allows patrons to feel right at home. The workers will come sit down with the dogs and chat with patrons over a cup of coffee. The café’s regulars know the staff very well and the dogs become part of the café’s family. Patrons can walk around the room, talk to other dog owners, and hang out with the animals.  

The menu has a wide variety ranging from smoothies and coffees to desserts and burgers. The energizing juice, made with a mix of lemonade and ginger, is refreshing and zesty—an afternoon drink with a kick if you are feeling tired. The meal portion of the menu offers vegetarian and and vegan options like the quinoa burger and vegan mac and cheese. While the prices can range from around $9 to $16, the experience with the dogs make it all worthwhile. For those not planning on staying at the café for long, a smoothie, juice, or slice of cake is bound to satisfy any cravings and keep patrons’ wallets happy. 

“It’s really busy on the weekends and pretty quiet during the weekdays so if you want to see more dogs I would recommend coming on the weekends,” Caroline Le Corre, a waitress at the café, explained.

Despite the lack of dogs at the café, there was one beautiful five month old Weimaraner named Tolstoy that was there that day. His owner brings him to the café around two to three times a week, so the space is a great place for her to work while allowing Tolstoy to play. Her puppy can’t be left alone at home for too long and so Le Doggy Café is extremely convenient for her. 

Montreal also has a cat café that offers a similar concept to the doggy café except instead of bringing your own cat, the cats are owned by the store. The benefit of a bring your own dog café is that it offers the same experience that the cat café provides, on top of the fact that dog owners can also bring their own pet along. 

“The cats were very friendly but in general they are more likely to chill by themselves and we have to initiate contact with the cats,” said Isabelle Del Mundo, a regular at the cat café.

The dogs at Le Doggy Café, on the other hand, are not only well behaved but full of life and eager to meet new people and other dogs at the café.

“We recommend that owners exercise their dogs before coming here and advise people to be calm,” Le Corre added. “Every dog is different so it is hard to set up different rules for all dogs but we want everyone to feel comfortable. In fact, if owners think their dog would be more comfortable, they can bring them a mat. We have treats for sale if people want to buy them for their dog but it’s also okay if owners bring their own treats.”

Le Doggy Café is great place whether or not you are a dog owner. For those who need a study break, or simply left their furry friend at home, Le Doggy Café is a unique place for relaxing with a little dog therapy for the day.

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