Partnered with the Spokane Humane Society, the world’s first full-service restaurant with both dog and cat adoptions, Bark, A Rescue Pub, opened up in downtown Spokane this August.
In the first 17 days of being open, Bark raised $1,902 for the Spokane Humane Society. In the first 30 days 100 animals were adopted through this unique dining and drinking experience.
Bark offers visitors elevated pub food while looking for a new furry friend.
Josh Wade, owner of Bark, said he was sitting at No-Li Brewery with some friends and overheard a young man talking about opening up an adoption brewery. Wade said he went over, talked with the young man about ideas and logistics and just couldn’t shake the idea.
“I couldn’t stop thinking about it,” Wade said. “I remember going back to sit down with friends and obsessing over how good of an idea it was.”
Wade and co-owner Katie Holmes made it happen after ample research.
In the adoption area, there are 10 dog kennels and room for up to 14 cats. The adoption center is located down the hall and past the bathrooms, in a separate 1,500-square-foot space from the restaurant. There is also a $5 adoption fee that goes back to help fund the Humane Society.
With an indoor and outdoor play space for dogs and a cat room for mingling with different kitties, Bark has it all for dogs and cat lovers alike.
“Brunch and kittens, it doesn’t get better,” said Andrea Kelsey, the general manager.
The number of animals in the rescue area can differ. Sometimes Bark will be at full capacity, and sometimes there could only be a few animals for adoption.
During this time, due to COVID-19, people in Spokane have been adopting animals more frequently, and it has led to some shortages of animals at the restaurant, according to Wade. Bark has helped so many animals get adopted though the Spokane Humane Society, and shortages of filling kennels and spots is seen as a worthy accomplishment.
“I just love that all of the animals find a home, and I love that we can be a part of that,” Kelsey said.
Not only does Bark help animals meet their owners, it donates a noticeable portion of its earnings to the Spokane Humane Society.
Every day of the week, $1 of all Tito’s vodka drinks, house red wine, and house white wine goes back to rescue animals. On Wag-days, what Bark likes to call Wednesdays, $1 of every item on the menu ordered goes back to the Humane Society.
“We want people to come because of the adoption experience, but they come back because of the food being remarkable,” Wade said.
Bark features a brunch menu and a lunch/dinner menu. A fun featured item on their brunch menu is the waffle board, a sampler of three types of airy, fluffy waffles: sweet potato, whole grain and buttermilk. The board includes sides of bacon bits, fruits, syrups and jams. This $20 menu item serves two people, and it is a go-to must-try.
Wade and Kelsey said that their Build-Your-Own-Burger is the most popular item on the lunch/dinner menu. The Frickle Burger, fried pickle burger, is another menu item that stands out to customers.
This fall, the rescue pub plans to revamp its menu, according to Kelsey and Wade.
Bark is just a five-minute drive from Gonzaga’s campus at 905 N. Washington St. The Adoption Center is open every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The restaurant is open Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
“It’s a great opportunity as a college student because you don’t have the opportunity to interact with your furry friend that you left home for,” Wade said. “You can get that fix here at Bark. You’re also helping a great cause while you’re eating and drinking.”