By TJ Davis
This summer, Loudouners and their pups can enjoy a drink and a treat at the various local bars and breweries that host “yappy hours.” Yappy hour is simply happy hour with a fun twist: for a select time, they encourage dog owners to bring their four-legged companions along with them.
Spanky’s Shenanigans and Bike TrAle Brewing, both in Leesburg, host weekly yappy hours, while venues like Blackfinn Ameripub in Ashburn and Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg add occasional yappy hours in their event schedules.
“We love having all the dogs here,” Bike TrAle Brewing employee Mary Jo Murphy said. “Pet owners are generally super friendly people. It’s fun.”
Barring inclement weather, the various yappy hours across Loudoun draw crowds and regular customers to outdoor patios. Katie Elaine, a bartender at Spanky’s Pub, said their weekly yappy hour brings in about 30 dogs a week, and they have customers who have been bringing their canine companions for years.
“I’ve gotten to see puppies grow up,” Elaine said.
And while paying patrons sip drinks on the patio, the Spanky’s bartenders make sure the pups are well taken care of, with plenty of dog bones—and even prime rib—to munch on.
“This place does it right,” said Tyler Cummings, who hung out on the patio recently with a friend’s hound, Fitz.
Rules vary across establishments, but generally, dogs are required to be leashed and get along with other dogs.
Many of participating bars also donate portions of the money collected during yappy hour to animal-related charities.
TJ Davis is a summer intern at Loudoun Now, studying journalism at Liberty University.
Get Your Yappy On
6 p.m. Thursdays, Bike TrAle Brewing, 101 Loudoun St., Leesburg
4 p.m. Wednesdays, Spanky’s Shenanigans, 538 E. Market St., Leesburg