Katie Bulmer-Cooke: A dog’s dinner to remember

Winner's of the Kennel Club award, Doggie Diner 
Owner Adrienne Dickson with Woody
Winner's of the Kennel Club award, Doggie Diner Owner Adrienne Dickson with Woody

Over the last few weeks I’ve spent a little more time down at the beach than normal. Despite summer being the obvious season of choice to spend more time there, I love getting wrapped up in my big coat, pulling on my woolly hat and heading to the sea front when the weather begins to change and it starts to get colder.

It’s so easy to take the fact that we live by the sea for granted, but I’ve been reminding myself to appreciate it more lately. There is so much change and development happening right along the sea front, from new places to eat to the revamp of the area right in front of the beach and addition of new seating areas and landscaping.

A few weeks ago I got involved with the Big Beach Spruce Up and prior to the event I have to be honest and say that I expected there to be plenty of litter to pick up, but there really wasn’t much at all, which to for me goes to prove, that as a city, we are proud of our beach and that the vast majority of people are keen to look after it.

Last weekend I found another reason to get excited about heading towards the beach, in the form of a lovely new place to grab a drink and a bite to eat, but this place has a very special twist and I can’t believe I didn’t know it was there.

Before heading down to the beach for a big walk with our dogs, we popped into the Doggie Diner on Sea Road, and as both a lover of eating out and my dogs, I was thrilled to have found this super cool cafe.

When my husband first mentioned it, I wasn’t sure what to expect from an eatery that was dog friendly, but I couldn’t have been more impressed. Everyone who came in was given the warmest of welcomes, especially the dogs. The lady who owns the Doggie Diner took the time to learn our dog’s names and made a real fuss of them, before we looked through the menu to discover that there was a human menu and a dog menu…it was really sweet, and the dogs loved their sausages!

The diner had a little play pen filled with dog toys where the dogs could mix and socialise, and the atmosphere was so different and up beat, with total strangers making conversation with each other and enjoying a throughly sociable experience (for both people and their dogs).

If you’re a dog owner, it’s a must visit and I think it’s so cool that we have something like this in Sunderland.