In response to the growing number of pet owners who want to eat out with their canines in tow, more dining establishments are opening their doors to dogs, but this is not without its problems.
The so-called dog cafe Denen Sabo in Tokyo’s fashionable Denenchofu district has a special menu for dogs and is popular with pet owners. At first glance, the canine dishes look like any other meal, but their ingredients have been selected to meet the animals’ needs.
A woman drinking iced coffee at the cafe said she often stops by while taking a walk. Her two Akita dogs seem content sprawled on the floor.
She says she is thankful for the shop’s cool concrete floor because Akitas do not take well to hot weather.
Hideko Notani, who handles public relations for Denen Sabo, said dogs appear to enjoy the cafe’s space, and many customers on weekdays bring their pets along.
Cafe Nature outside Hiratsuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, offers classes twice a month that teach dog owners appropriate manners for visiting restaurants with their pets.
Hiroaki Aiyama of the cafe says he initially started the classes at the request of dog owner customers, but he believes restaurants need to remind their clientele to be considerate of others.
Aiyama, who also runs the restaurant HxM in Hiratsuka, stopped allowing dogs except on the terrace last November after one bit him.
The dog’s owner was absorbed in talking to her friends and oblivious to her pet’s continuous barking. He asked her to quiet her pet down, but to no avail.
The incident occurred at a time when his French restaurant was becoming popular with customers who wanted to bring their dogs.
“I saw more and more inconsiderate behavior as the number of visitors to the restaurant increased,” Aiyama said. “I began to worry about accidents.”
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