In some cities, it seems like you can't even go a block without seeing a cafe or coffee shop. It shouldn't come as a surprise - after all, coffee is how billions of people around the world choose to start their every morning. Everyone has their preference on where they like to get a good cup of joe, so new cafes have an uphill battle in attracting the attention of would-be customers. Some try to set up shop in the trendiest locations, while others focus their efforts on offering a variety of brews. The coffee shop that is featured in this story, however, is attempting to attract crowds by doing something a little different.
The Dog Cafe in Los Angeles, California is like no other cafe in the United States. The first of its kind in the country, the small shop caters to both coffee enthusiasts and animal lovers.
Patrons of the shop can enjoy their favorite coffee or tea, all while spending time in the company of playful dogs. The best part is that if you develop a strong bond with any of the animals, you can go home with them.
That's right, all the animals here are up for adoption.
The idea was conceived by Sarah Wolfgang, who has over 16 years of volunteer experience with shelters and rescuing dogs from meat farms overseas. She had heard of cat cafes opening in the United States before, but was surprised that no one had thought to open one up that is focused on dogs.
Dogs here are free to interact with each other and humans, which is in stark contrast to the confined rooms and cages they would have to live in within a typical shelter.
"We call ourselves a halfway house, because we take the dogs out of the shelter, then we rehabilitate them," Wolfgang said in an interview with The Dodo.
"We give them the medical care they need to prepare them to get adopted."
The ability to socialize does wonders for their morale, and it's a good halfway point to getting them used to the company of humans in a friendly environment.
The cafe itself has been open for several months, but it's scheduled to have a grand-opening celebration on April 7th. So, if you happen to be in the area, please consider stopping by for the big party and to meet the animals.
Even though the grand opening hasn't happened yet, three dogs have already been adopted since the cafe first opened its doors.
"We're quite picky with our adoption process," said Sarah. "We want to ensure that each dog goes to the best home possible."
Between 10 to 14 dogs can be kept at the location at any one time, and Sarah is hopeful that many will have greater luck finding their forever homes by being able to interact with customers (and potential fosterers) on a daily basis. To learn more about The Dog Cafe, be sure to check out their website and follow them on Instagram and Facebook.
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