New dog-friendly cafe opens its (kennel) doors on Sukhumvit
The naming of a dog is a role of great responsibility. You’re giving something a lifelong identity but then there’s also the fun of being creative with it, too. Like naming celebrity children. Not that I’ve ever done it, but I can imagine.
I didn’t become a dog person until my late-twenties when my ex-girlfriend told me that her dog would always be the most important person (a “thing” surely) in her life. Ever since I have had a dog-shaped hole in my life, but Pooch Cafe has filled that neatly.
The recently opened dog-friendly cafe, off Sukhumvit Soi 31, opened to fill a need for puppy love in the Bangkok dog cafe market. Apparently, that’s a thing. As it is in London, Tokyo, and New York. There are already cafes in this city with meerkats and raccoons (honestly), and there are endless pussy-parlours, so why are dogs falling out of favour with only a limited number of puppy-friendly options?
Sim Thuan Ping and his partner Lizhu Bao opened their café in part to provide space for their 11 dogs, as well as a place for locals to hang out with their pets. Offering canine comfort in what they described to me as “poochtherapy”—a wrist-slashingly ghastly term that surely can’t be real—guest dogs mix with the resident pups, climbing, rolling, and falling over one another.
You enter through the narrow storefront and exchange your shoes for flip-flops. There’s coffee (B85-B150) and cake (B98-B120 a slice) downstairs, although there’s a worrying lack of any other human food, given its “cafe” status. Upstairs a doggy-daycare facility is kitted out with low-level counter tops, cushion seating, colourful and squeaky chew toys, and a fenced-area for over-excitable mutts, should it be needed.
I entered the upper level, careful to tip-toe around any pee or rogue puppy-poos, and not to squash any of the teeny-weeny pups under my Size10s. The puppies couldn’t have been less interested. That was until I dipped a hand into my pocket to reveal “treats”. They all recognized the opportunity and came bounding over, their rubber-like tongues hanging from their mouths in anticipated excitement.
There’s Charlie and Coffee and Leo and Cloud and Cookie and Vanilla and Finn and Burger and Mike, to name but a few. It’s actually difficult to count them all, but they’re all smart little critters—using their cuteness to win favour and, in return, gain treats. That’s dogs for you: intelligent creatures. That’s why they’ve been into outer space, though they didn’t know why and they didn’t come back.
The cafe offers a pack of ‘Pooch Treats’ free of charge, with additional bags available for purchase at B25 each. Other packages are available, and for B325 you can have the treats along with a printable coffee, so you can have your pooch’s face appear on highly-Instagrammable coffee foam. That’s the world we live in now. And the dogs know it. Welcome to Bangkok 2018.
245/14, Sukhumvit Soi 31 | Tel: 061 563 4733
Open daily: 11am-9:30pm
By David J. Constable