Listen, your dog is cooler than you. Your friends are really only friends with you for your dog. Sorry to break it to you, but it’s true.
Instead of heading out with the strange ex-colleague you haven’t managed to shake, or your latest Tinder endeavour, mix up the location and bring along the pup. Here’s your Wriggle-certified guide to the best dog friendly pubs, bars and watering holes in Bristol. You (and pooch) are welcome.
For post-walk pizza… The White Rabbit
The White Rabbit is snug in the heart of Clifton, making it the perfect place to collapse after the obligatory Sunday morning dog walk around the Downs. Thanks to its relaxed, informal vibe (despite its snazzy Clifton location), The White Rabbit is warm, friendly and a no-brainer for a weekend chill-sesh – settle into one of the cosy dining corners, or up the ante on the free-to-use ping pong table. Most importantly, portion sizes for the famed and fresh gluten-free pizzas are generous (as is the dough ball portion), meaning hungry pups might just luck out with leftovers.
For outdoor drinking… The Pump House
Did you know The Pump House currently stocks over 700 gins? Say no more. Juniper may not be your dog’s tipple of choice, but if it’s yours then there’s really nowhere better. Right on the edge of Bristol’s Floating Harbour, this converted Victorian pump house provides the ideal place to park up on a summer’s evening and watch the world sail by... Sit in the sunshine, and your furry friend will get a lot of attention. They even had a resident Gromit.
For doggy meet-ups… The Hillgrove
This laid back establishment, tucked up a steep street in Kingsdown, is the ideal place to pitch camp for a few hours, sip on some of the best local craft ale, and squish around the bar with the friendly clientele. A favourite with the locals, this pub is great for pints, food, and of course, dogs! The Hillgrove's garden area is partly covered, made up of a mish-mash of broad tables, benches, and wooden platforms - dogs of all breeds and sizes are a regular feature. Keep an eye on the brilliant food pop-ups that promise something delicious every time - the fantastic Kansai Kitchen are currently in residence, serving up truly incredible, authentic Japanese delights.
For people who don't actually have a dog, but want to hang out with one… Ironworks
We visit Ironworks for the first-class coffee, the smashin’ smashed avocado, and the edgy yet relaxed decor. We also - definitely - visit to see Tinka. Tinka is the resident pooch, a Brussels Griffin whose resemblance to Chewbacca somehow makes her adorable rather than monstrous. Walk in, and for a whole five minutes (or more if you’re lucky) she’ll act as though she’s all yours. So if you’re desperate for your own pooch, but your other half/ tiny flat won’t permit, head to Workhouse, have brunch, and have a cuddle with Tinka.
For dinner… The Spotted Cow
One for the south-of-the-river crew, at last! North Street’s Spotted Cow has been around for 200 years, testament to how beloved it is by locals and visitors alike. Friendly staff and cosy atmosphere give it the feel of a traditional pub, whilst the sophisticated menu and stylish interior lend a contemporary update. Friendly dogs are welcome, either in the spacious bar area or the large walled garden, and are even welcome to participate in the Tuesday night pub quiz. Better brush up on your general knowledge, Fido!
For room to run around in… Volunteer Tavern
Volunteer Tavern dates back as far as the 17th century, but still maintains a pretty impressive reputation in Bristol for promising a well-rounded trip to the pub, every time. The bar is teeny tiny but manages to pack in at least four refreshing crafty ales, including the much-loved Wiper & True, plus a great range of spirits and wine. The indoor space here is small, but this only encourages punters (and their dogs) to make use of the crackin' beer garden. Part-covered, filled with heaters, and complete with beer barrels and brick walling for seating space, it's the ideal place to cram yourself and pooch into on a busy Friday night.
One for the sophisticated dog-lovers ... The Rummer
Lurking in a fabulous historic building , The Rummer offers an elegant venue for drinking cocktails, whilst also still hanging out with your four-legged friend - quite possibly the most ideal evening imaginable? They do a banging roast, too.
The old-school, gimmick-free boozer one...The Hare on North Street
A refreshingly simple, old-fashioned pub tucked away on North Street, The Hare is the perfect place to kick back and relax with your canine pal. Particularly good for dog-lovers is the hidden garden, which lies at the top of a small flight of steps, and seats over 60 people (and their dogs).
One for the people who are craving the countryside...The Miner's Arms
A trip to Saint Werbs always restores the body and soul - it's almost definitely scientifically proven that it's as good for you as going on a run. The Miner's Arms is a perfect example of why we love this area - make your way towards the Ashley Vale allotments, and you'll find a traditional, cosy pub, with free-to-use pool tables, huge communal tables, a covered smoking area, and, of course, plenty of canine friends.
One for the Southville gang...The Malago
The guys at The Malago take being dog-friendly seriously, offering out water, dog biscuits, and cuddles galore to your canine friends. Located in the heart of Southville, and championing the local and independent scenes of Bristol, the food here is absolutely gorgeous - don't miss the hearty cauliflower steak, or the tempura stuffed courgette flowers.
One to get a Sunday roast in...The Lazy Dog
After a brisk Sunday morning walk with doggo, what could be better than tucking into a delicious, hearty Sunday roast in a cosy, homely feeling pub? 'Nothing', is the answer you're looking for. Head on over to The Lazy Dog on Ashley Down Road in North Bristol, and make yourself at home for the afternoon. There's a massive, lush outside seating area out the back too, in case pooch needs to stretch out his/her legs some more.
For the no nonsense pint...The Inn On The Green
Not only is the Inn on The Green a great pub to hang out in for people, whatever the weather, they love their four legged punters too. All dogs are welcomed in with open arms and are all in the running to be the pubs "dog of the month" an honour I am sure you would all agree. There is plenty of outdoor space both in and out of the sun to enjoy and plenty of water bowls to quench the pups thirst whilst you quench yours.
Have we missed anywhere? Let us know your favourite dog-friendly haunts in Bristol over on Twitter or Facebook, and maybe we’ll add them to this otherwise paw-fect list.