On a sunny spring Saturday, what’s better than getting together with some pals and enjoying a cold brew on your favorite bar’s patio?

If you’re a dog owner, you may feel some guilt (or even some separation anxiety) from leaving your four-legged friend in the kennel as you gallivant around town.

But a monthly event – put on by the organization K9-Connection – can bring you, your pooch, your pint and your pub all together!

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Beer with your Buddy was started seven years ago by K9-Connection founder Angie Gwiazdon. Saturday’s event was held at the Nomad World Pub in Minneapolis in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“I find that [for] a lot of people, dogs are like their children, and they’re looking for outlets and opportunities where they can connect with other people,” Gwiazdon said. “They feel guilty leaving their dog at home. ‘Oh I want to go to happy hour and socialize, but I don’t want to leave my dog at home!'”

Not only is Beer with your Buddy a great way to hang with other dog/beer lovers, but it’s for a great cause. May’s event benefits Homeward Bound Dog Rescue, which turns 25 in June.

“When they can bring their dog, when they connect with like-minded people and we can help raise money for charities – it’s just a win-win,” Gwiazdon said.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Sherry Friedman, a volunteer with Homeward Bound, says her organization is a no-kill shelter that takes any breed of dog, at any age. There were even two Homeward Bound alums at the Nomad, hanging out with other lucky dogs.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“We pay for everything; for neutering, shots. So we’re grateful for opportunities to do some fundraising,” Friedman said.

Dana Boergerhoff came to the event Saturday with Darwin, her 7-year-old Pekinese (the one being sniffed in the photo below). She says she has two dogs, but one was left home because he can’t handle social events of this nature.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“He has a shady history,” Boergerhoff said. “He was a street kid for a while, so he’s better left at home.”

So, what exactly does Darwin get out of this drink-friendly event?

“For some reason, if there’s beer involved, he tends to socialize a little better – even if he’s not the one drinking it,” she said. “It’s the vibe.”

Wally and Kim brought their buddy, Diesel. They get the appeal of this type of event.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“It’s Valleyfair for dogs,” Wally said.

Kim says Diesel was “having the time of his life” at the Nomad’s outdoor bocce ball area.

“He’s just running around like he doesn’t even know where to go,” Kim said.

Recently back from California, Michelle brought her dogs Ziggy and Kaya along for the fun. (Yes, she is a Bob Marley fan.)

“We go to dog parks in the Twin Cities, so they’re acclimated to playing with other dogs, but not in a bar,” Michelle said. “This is awesome.”

Her daughter Sam brought Pinto, the dog she shares with her boyfriend, Tim.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

K9-Connection also puts on Wine and Wag, which will take place in June. It’s a fancier version of Beer with your Buddy that also features a five-course meal and live music.

And the organization also brings the downward dog position back to the dogs at their monthly Doga events (a portmanteau of “dog” and “yoga.” Get it?).

The next Beer with your Buddy event will be held in July at a location that has yet to be determined.

Check out www.k9-connection.com for more information.

~Stephen Swanson

From pit bulls to pet rocks, Pet Blog covers it all. If you have a great animal companion story or a pet-related event that deserves a spotlight, email sdswanson@wcco.com.


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