L.A. Woman Crowdfunds for City’s First Dog Cafe

Ugly Dog (Stephen Lam / Reuters)
Stephen Lam / Reuters
Los Angeles, CA

A Los Angeles woman is turning to a crowdfunding campaign to fund her dream of opening up the city’s first “dog cafe.”

After the successful opening of “cat cafes” in Los Angeles and Oakland,  21-year old South Korean-born Sarah Wolfgang’s idea for a dog cafe seems like the logical next step.

“When I moved to L.A., not long afterward I adopted a dog from a local shelter and the visit brought me to tears,” Wolfgang told ABC News. “It was upsetting to see so many dogs stressed out after being confined to such small spaces over an extended period of time.”

According to the Dog Cafe’s crowdfunding website, patrons will be able to sip coffee from Grounds and Hounds Coffee Co. while interacting with dogs brought in from local shelters.

“The Dog Cafe is going to put a spin on the way people adopt by totally reinventing the way we connect with homeless dogs,” reads the campaign site. “We want to provide you with the opportunity to see these highly adoptable pooches in their true light. And even if you’re not looking to adopt, you can still enjoy all of the sloppy kisses you’ve ever wanted.”

Wolfgang told ABC that the cafe will be split into two distinct areas, one for purchasing coffee and food and a separate area for interacting with the dogs. A trainer will be assigned to three dogs per day, to make sure the dogs are happy and that no unwanted incidents arise.

“We’re thinking we will have eight to nine dogs at a time and allow 12 to 14 people inside during 30-minute appointments,” Wolfgang told ABC News. “Before being brought into the cafe, a personality evaluation will be given to each dog to make sure they can mingle with other dogs and are capable of being around people.”

Wolfgang also told ABC that dog cafes are popular in Korea, and that she sees no reason the concept couldn’t work in the United States.

“It was also very upsetting to learn how many large, older, and special-needs dogs are overlooked by owners searching for purebred puppies,” Wolfgang said in the report. “So I thought a dog cafe would be a good way to get the dogs out of that environment and get them the publicity that they need for adoption.”


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