Northern Beaches Mums Group
Northern Beaches Mums Group

Dos and Don’ts of Dining Out with Dogs

Do's and Don'ts of Dog-Friendly Dining | Northern Beaches Mums

The only thing better than Sunday brunch by the beach is getting to enjoy a flat white and avo toast with your favourite four-legged friend by your side.

With more pets than people in Australia (30+ million at last count), savvy cafes are increasingly inviting pets into their premises and reaping the rewards.

The Boathouse at Shelly Beach, Almas at Avalon and Hemingway’s at Manly are among the dog-friendly businesses listed in a new pet directory which connects pet owners with pet-friendly places, businesses and services in their neighbourhood.

Like TripAdvisor for pets, PetCloud’s pet directory uses GPS technology to show the nearest dog parks and beaches, as well as dog-friendly cafés and pubs, with the option to review each place.

But before you take your dog out socialising, it’s important that they are socialised.

PetCloud – Australia’s most trusted pet services platform – shares some tips and tricks for dining out with your dog.

Take your dog for a walk first

A short walk before settling at a café is a good way to avoid unwanted accidents. In the case of an accident, make sure you have a waste bag handy.

BYO drinks

For hygiene reasons, dogs shouldn’t eat or drink from cafe plates or pub glassware so bring your own portable water bowl.

Avoid the action

Request a table on the edge, if possible, where there are fewer people and less distractions for your dog.

Keep your dog close

A big dog tied to a table can result in spills so it’s best to tie the leash to your chair. And avoid extension leashes so they don’t cause the waiter or another patron to trip over. It’s best to keep your dog as close as possible, such as lying down under the table (size permitting) or next to you.

Keep your dog entertained

It’s good for your dog to practice good manners which means they shouldn’t be whining, barking, begging or jumping up wanting food. To avoid this kind of behaviour, offer them long chew treats and aim for a tired or worn out dog so it is more likely to settle. Be prepared to pay your bill and leave quickly if your dog causes a disturbance. 

Trained dogs only

If your dog does not know the basics of Sit, Down, Stay, and Leave it – then they probably aren’t ready for dining out and it’s best to stick to takeaway until they are trained.

It’s not time for them to socialise

Unless invited, dogs should not socialise with other diners, employees or fellow dogs or this may result in a disturbance.

Leave a tip

It never hurts to leave a tip for anyone who has graciously served you and your canine companion.

Ensure your dog is well groomed

It’s not appropriate to bring a smelly dog into an environment where humans are eating.


  1. Don’t place your dog, even a small dog, on the table, in your lap or on a chair next to you.
  2. Don’t let your dog eat off your plate or drink from your glass.
  3. Don’t feed your dog off your plate or silverware.
  4. Don’t put your plate (or any dinnerware) on the ground for your dog to eat from or lick.
  5. Don’t be upset if people refuse to be seated by you. Not everyone wants to dine with dogs.

Remember, taking your dog out to dine with you at a restaurant is a privilege and not a right. Only well-mannered dogs that are groomed should be accompanying you out for a meal. Even if the state or local laws permit, alfresco dining with your dog is offered solely as a courtesy by the restaurant. 

To view the directory online or add a pet-friendly location or business, visit

PetCloud is Australia’s leading pet sitting service. Like Airbnb for pets, the Australian owned and run company offers a safe, convenient and affordable way for pet owners to find someone to look after their pet while they’re away. Services range from pet sitting to dog walking and even pet taxis. The platform is part owned by RSPCA Queensland with the RSPCA’s National Call Centre running PetCloud’s customer support. Guided by experts and industry leaders, PetCloud is Australia’s most trusted and reliable pet sitting platform. PetCloud is a social impact organisation, which plays a positive role in helping to change the lives of pets and people in Australia.