Who'll let the dogs in?
On International Dog Day, five pet parents reveal their favourite animal-friendly spaces in the city, beyond doggie-centred cafes
Although the headline of this piece is reminiscent of Bahamian group Baha Men's fun 2000 hit, it turns out to be a serious question. Not only because it's International Dog Day today — an occasion founded in 2004 by animal advocate Colleen Paige to celebrate the animal — but because it's something dog owners truly struggle with. We invited five pet parents to recommend their favourite doggie-friendly spaces in the city where a series of woofs aren't a bother.
Ginger is a Lhasa Apso who is a little over a year old and parent and Andheri West resident Payal Shah avoids taking her to narrow spaces as they can be claustrophobic. Besides the Versova cafe-cum-library Leaping Windows, Shah lists Giant, a cycle shop in Khar, as a pet-friendly place.
Payal Shah and Ginger
"I think allowing is one thing, but behaving correctly around the pet is important too. For example, my dog is very anxious so it's nice when employees do not approach her to pet her, and don't behave like there's a menace in the place," she adds.
At Giant Starkenn Cycling World, Mohini Towers, Khar West.
Time 10.30 am to 8.30 pm
Deepa Talib with Anubis
Deepa Talib works towards getting a home for abandoned dogs. As the parent of Anubis, a seven-year-old German Shepherd, she feels Mumbai could do with more compassion.
And Wodehouse Road's Shiv Plaza Super Market, and Students General Stores serve as good examples of that. "At the store, I was encouraged to bring him inside. And while I was taking Anubis for a walk by the supermarket, the staff asked me if he'd like water," she says.
At Student General Stores, GD Somani Marg, Cuffe Parade; Shiv Plaza Super Market, Wodehouse Road, Colaba.
Time 7.45 am to 8.30 pm; 9 am to 10 pm
Call 22187791; 22183737
Sonali Bagchandani with Foxy
Cuffe Parade resident Sonali Bagchandani avoids taking Foxy out simply because the four-year-old is too feisty.
That's why Colaba's US Club that one can visit with a member suits her needs as it has a separate pet lawn. Bagchandani concludes, "They hold dog hours while you wrap up your other activities at the club."
Ar US Club, Navy Nagar,
Colaba. Time 6 am to 10 pm
Harshita and Cooper Sharma
Harshita Sharma, an engineer based in Kharghar, gets her nearly two-year-old Labrador Cooper regularly groomed. But what when she needs some salon service herself and needs to keep the doggie home?
The promenade outside Kharghar's Central Park is pet-friendly
Fortunately, Sol, the parlour down her building is more than accommodating. She explains, "Since the owner has a dog herself, it is easy for me to take Cooper there. In Kharghar, there are many open spaces including the driving range outside Central Park but it is a huge disappointment that the park itself doesn't allow pets. To top it, there is plenty of space lying unused."
At Sol, Bhoomi Premium Tower, Kharghar.
Time 9.30 am to 10 pm
All booked for barks
The chief executive officer of The Welfare of Stray Dogs (WSD), Abodh Aras has spent the last 20 years working with strays.
"Irani cafés right from the now-shuttered Bastani to Café Mondegar and Britannia have been very open to letting dogs in as well as feeding and looking after them," he reveals, adding Prabhadevi bookstore Kahani Tree as his pet-friendly pick. "It's an amazing combination — have dogs come in a children's bookstore," he says.
At Kahani Tree, Industry Manor, Prabhadevi.
Time 10 am to 5.30 pm
Adopt, don't shop
Gain a new furry family member by walking into this adoption drive scheduled at a co-working space today, in partnership with the NGO Word For All.
On Today, 10 am to 4 pm
At WeWork, Raheja Platinum, Andheri East.
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