Are dog-friendly pubs still a place for non-dog lovers?

One of The Dog's loyal customers, Lola enjoying a sunny day. Do you think dogs belong in a pub? Pict

One of The Dog's loyal customers, Lola enjoying a sunny day. Do you think dogs belong in a pub? Picture: THE GRUNDISBURGH DOG - Credit: THE GRUNDISBURGH DOG

Back in the day the debate centred around whether children should be allowed in pubs – but now times have changed and more people are asking whether dogs should be allowed in the popular drinking hubs.

For many countryside-lovers there is nothing better than finishing off a long Sunday dog walk with a pint in their favourite rural pub. In Suffolk, the number of pubs marketing themselves as 'dog-friendly' has grown over the years - with most pubs in the area allowing pooches to roam around freely.

These include The Dog at Grundisburgh, which was named as the country's most dog-friendly pub for 2019 after beating hundreds of other breweries up and down the country.

But for some people, these four-legged-friends should be kept at home for the fear of the 'hair of the dog' ending up in their meal, or the thought of being greeted by an overly-excited pup with mud-covered paws.

Nicky Heming, from Somersham, says he "couldn't agree more" that dogs don't have a place in pubs.

He said: "Dog owners are invariably friendly people but never seem to realise that their pooches are not to everybody's liking. "Happily quite a few pubs restrict dogs to certain areas which is fine so long as I don't want to eat outside.

"Even when out walking, the approach of any size dog is unnerving to anyone a bit unsteady on their feet. I always stop to make sure any friendly overtures catch me with both feet firmly on the ground.

"It would be so much nicer if the owners kept these friendly animals strictly to themselves."

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Meanwhile, Charles Rogers, who owns the award-winning pub The Dog, in Grundisburgh, says despite being openly dog-friendly they will "always accomodate customers with dogs with the upmost consideration of other guests".

He continued: "Because of this we happily allow well-behaved dogs in both the bar and restaurant side of the pub.

"For the comfort of everyone in the pub including our four-legged-friends we will try to seat them in quiet corners and we even ask the breed of dog when booking a table so that we can accommodate them comfortably."

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