Two Paws Up
10 of the most dog-friendly hangouts in Austin
Editor's note: Since the publication of this article, unfortunately Freddie's Place has closed.
Austin is an extremely dog-friendly city — more hangouts than not are okay with you bringing along your four-legged friend. To usher in summer, we've rounded up 10 of the most dog-friendly bars and restaurants in the city.
Banger’s Sausage House
Every third Monday of the month, Banger’s hosts Mutt Monday from 5 - 7 pm. Besides free dog training sessions, grooming and giveaways from companies like Mudpuppies, Lofty Dog, Animal Trustees of Austin and Midtown Groom & Board, owners can enjoy half-off all pints. Banger’s is just as pro-pooch the rest of the year too; the Rainey Street spot even features dog sausage (made from pork, beef and veggies) and a dog run so you can enjoy your meal with both hands while Fido makes new friends.
Doghouse Drinkery Dog Park
This Leander dog park also features a bar and a game room, where owners can relax and socialize while the dogs run and play in a half-acre, off-leash park. A separate 7,000-square-foot fenced area is reserved for meet-ups and adoptions, training and private “yappy hours.” Doghouse provides some toys, waste stations and baggies for clean-up, and a well-maintained space where water is changed often. Guests pay daily ($5) or opt for an annual membership ($50).
Austin Beer Garden Brewing Company
The ABGB has a spacious backyard with plenty of lawn chairs and shady spots, as well as a dog watering station and individual bowls. ABGB also organizes a beer series in support of Austin Pets Alive!, where $1 per pint sold goes to support the nonprofit's dogs (the next one will be take place in August). While the humans enjoy pizza and a huge beer selection, pups will hope they run into an ABGB regular who uses the company's spent brewing grain to make homemade dog treats.
Forget a patio: Moontower Saloon offers dogs more than 11 acres to play on. This South Austin space also has various dog-themed events, such as an upcoming PuppyPalooza and a weekly pug meet-up. Between the pups, food trailers, fire pits, washer pits and live music, it feels like more of a house party than a bar.
Austin Terrier’s patio is covered (essential in the Texas heat!) and, while the rules state that dogs are not to eat, bark excessively or do their “business,” Austin Terrier does encourage owners to bring their pups along. Humans flocks here for the sandwiches, pizzas and half-price bottles of wine on Mondays.
This Austin staple is a great dog spot because it essentially turns into one big tailgating fest. Guests pull up their trucks up, take out folding chairs and get comfy with a pitcher of delicious draught beer (some brewed in-house, other from the wall of choice selections). Take your pup on Saturday for free brats (served in the afternoon) and you’ll truly be your dog’s best friend.
While the porch isn’t as huge as some others around town, this Tex-Mex Indian gastropub off I-35 often opens a second outside bar, so you won’t need to leave Rover to refill your glass. Now that’s a doggone good selling point — almost as good as the queso con chutney!
The Buzz Mill
The beverage selections at The Buzz Mill are vast: coffee, tea, kombucha, beer, habanero-infused Bloody Mary (just come for brunch and get all five!). Buzz Mill is also stocked up on dog bowls for water and picnic tables for relaxing.
Yard Bar opens later this summer, but discounted memberships are already on sale for this promising dog park, restaurant and bar. Visitors can opt for annual or weekly memberships (with unlimited visits) or pay $5 per visit. The space is 30,000 square feet — 20,000 of which is an off-leash dog park with agility equipment, mister fans and large trees for shade. For humans, the menu spans breakfast, snack items, sandwiches and salads, as well as wine and beer. For your pup, there will be options like a non-alcoholic “Bowser Beer” and ice pops in dog-friendly flavors.
You might call Freddie’s Place the O.G. dog-friendly patio in town. In fact, in 2006, owner Fred Nelson was instrumental in getting an ordinance passed that allowed dogs outside at restaurants. Freddie’s welcomes neighborhood dogs with giant dog biscuits and a watering station, and the menu even includes a dog burger — a half pound of hamburger meat served in a dog bowl. For owners, the drink specials don’t get any better than the $1.99 tall boys and frozen margaritas at happy hour. Plus, you have a chance to win a free meal by playing washers.