Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, one group has reaped the rewards of a lockdown of global proportions: pets.
Dogs and cats have become best friend, confidant, coworker, and even therapist to many who abruptly and thoroughly found themselves spending nearly all of their time at home.
Now, as vaccine rollouts are tempting us into congregating again, there are more of who might be looking for places to go with our furry companions in tow.
Enter Mutts Canine Cantina, a concept that combines a restaurant with an outdoor space where people and dogs can enjoy a day out. The chain was founded in 2013 by Dallas natives Kyle Noonan and Josh Sepkowitz, who sought to offer dogs and their owners a safe, fun place to socialize, eat, and drink.
Now the Texas-based chain is looking to add to its growing paw print with a place to sit and stay in Miami.
Managing partner Michelle Boggs says the brand hopes to settle on a South Florida franchisee this year.
"Mutts has a flexible footprint, as the park can be designed to fit lots that wouldn’t be a match for any other type of real estate," Boggs tells New Times. "A Mutts on a Miami rooftop would be a dream!"
Acknowledging that locals know more about prime South Florida real estate than Texas Mutts do, the team is asking for help procuring the ideal spot to set up for you and Spot.
Mutts Cantina serves a food menu of griddle dogs, burgers, custard, and shakes for pet owners. A “Woof” menu offers sweet and savory treats, including beef franks, vanilla custard with peanut butter, and "pupsicles" flavored with beef broth and peanut butter.
Each Mutts location is designed as a 1,150 square feet venue with an extra acre of space that serves as an off-leash dog park with separate areas for small and large dogs. The concept offers daily ($8.95), monthly ($16.95), and yearly memberships ($169.50), which include use of toys and service by “bark rangers” who monitor the pooches and provide drinking water and cleanups.
"We were having lunch on a restaurant patio and a woman was having trouble controlling her dog and it pulled a chair over. The thought came to us that the concept of a membership dog park, bar, and grill was long overdue," explains cofounder Kyle Noonan.
Recently named a Nation’s Restaurant News breakout brand, Mutts currently operates corporate units in Dallas and Fort Worth and has sold thirteen franchises in Texas, Colorado, and Arizona since 2019.
Pet lovers willing to beg for a Miami-area Mutts can take a photo of their proposed ideal future Mutts location and share it on Instagram @muttscantina with the hashtag #BringAMUTTSHere.
Mutts Canine Cantina. muttscantina.com.