Pups And Coffee Cups: Rescue Dogs While Enjoying Fair-Trade Coffee

Christine Zizo
by Christine Zizo
A Kickstart project aims to open a café that caters to latte and dog lovers – it’s an adoption shelter and coffee bar all in one!

A North Carolina businesswoman hopes dog lovers will soon be able to enjoy a cappuccino with their pups inside her new café that goes beyond dog friendly.

Alicia Greenwalt is behind Pup’uccino Dog Rescue, a planned in Chapel Hill, NC. Her concept practically combines Starbucks with a rescue extravaganza.

In the front of the house, patrons can lounge with their pet and enjoy a treat. But in the back of the house, the lounge gives rescue dogs the chance to roam off-leash and socialize with patrons – and possibly go home with them. Rescues would be free to use the facilities for fundraisers and adoption events.

“I got the idea last year watching the viral cat videos of these cat cafes in Japan that allow apartment dwellers, who usually can’t afford cats, to come by and spend some time with cats at a local café,” Greenwalt said. “I wanted to take the idea one step further and apply it to dogs and rescue organizations. What if we had a place where people could bring their dogs and relax and for people who didn’t have dogs, they could come and meet rescue dogs available for adoption?”

Greenwalt said the goal is to create a place with a community feel for rescue and shelter dogs, who are often only seen in cages. Some are scared from the environment around them, making it more difficult to get adopted.

“Our true mission is to create a new space where people in the community can meet and foster new relationships with other people in their community as well as the local rescue organizations,” Greenwalt said.

To fund Pup’uccino, Greenwalt has turned to Kickstarter. From now until November 11, 2014, Greenwalt is trying to raise $70,000. She’s about one third of the way toward her goal. The money is funding the activity space, special flooring, an indoor doggy potty, and the custom designed dog lounge in the back.

Greenwalt’s plan includes selling fair trade coffee, wine and beer. She’ll also have pastries and other snacks to sell. Those snacks will be prepared off-site by an area baker, to comply with North Carolina law.

“We are working with local vendors and small businesses to prepare great food options for our guests,” Greenwalt said. “We are working with the Phoenix Bakery in Pittsboro to prepare fresh baked goods every day including doughnuts and muffins.”

Pup’uccino hopes to open in August 2016. If you’re interested in helping, check out the Pup’uccino website.

Christine Zizo
Christine Zizo

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