fairweather brewing

Taproom just outside Toronto decides they have to ban dogs indoors

Many dog lovers agree that pups should be allowed pretty much everywhere, but sadly sometimes that just doesn't work and they have to stay out of certain places.

That's what Fairweather Brewing Company just outside Toronto in Hamilton has decided about their taproom. They'll now only be allowing service animals.

"We love furry creatures as much as the next corporate entity, and pets will still be welcome on our patios," reads a social media post with new rules for pets at the brewery.

"This is a bummer for many of you, and we don't love it either, but we think that this is a necessary step and hope you understand."

Fairweather owner and head brewer Ram McAllister says that pretty much everyone at the brewery considers themselves a "dog person" ("not dog-human hybrids or anything, but we all like dogs,") but they had to put those personal feelings aside for the sake of the greater good.

"Dogs can make people feel uncomfortable, they can be disruptive inside a small space, and we also feel that a loud, confined environment is not good for animals," McAllister tells blogTO.

"It is impossible to know how pets will interact with other animals or people, and with so many people coming and going, we feel that is best for our customers and our team."

They feel that they've landed on a good compromise by letting people continue to bring their dogs to the brewery's patio.

"We know from experience that even though rules are posted very visibly, and are easy to understand and follow, people will become distracted from managing their pets, and we will have to address issues," says McAllister.

"We hope that people are aware of their pets' needs and behavioural traits, and make the right decision about whether or not this is an appropriate environment for their pet. If we find that issues still persist, we will have to re-address our policies regarding pets in a more complete context."

As might be expected, they've gotten a mixed response to the announcement.

"Nice to see people still advocating for responsible parenting and pet owning! Good on you fine folks!" one person commented on their post on Instagram.

"More taprooms should have dog rules like this," someone commented enthusiastically. 

"The barking is disruptive to the employees and other customers. There are many people allergic to dogs, fur and saliva. And the fur is honestly a health code issue. I am obsessed with my dog. But she gets over excited and is very loud when she's out. Responsibly, I leave her at home."

There are also comments like "Nooooooo," "Sad day for animal rights and inclusion," and "Sorry you’ve made this decision, we (and Bailey) will miss coming down, since we have been since day one."

"Some are thankful for this decision, while some are disappointed, and we understand that," says McAllister. "Most people understand why we had to do this."

Lead photo by

Fairweather Brewing Company


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