Preparations underway for New Mexico’s first dog cafe

Canine Cafe
Canine Cafe

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a growing trend across the country: cat and dog cafes are starting to pop up all over.

In just a month, you could be sipping coffee and playing with puppies at the same time. New Mexico’s first “dog cafe” could open as soon as November 15th.

It might not look like much now, but soon, this unique cafe will be serving up your favorite cup of coffee alongside man’s best friend.

We’ve seen it before — when Gatos y Galletas, a cat café, opened up in downtown Albuquerque. But, there’s something extra they’re brewing at “Canine Café.”

“They grab their beverage. They go through a catch pen area and then all throughout the entire space is where the dogs will be, anywhere between 10 to 20 dogs at a time,” said Melissa Roberts, New Mexico Pets Alive Executive Director.

Money from each cup of coffee bought will go towards saving the lives of hundreds of healthy, treatable dogs. The pooches will be put up for adoption in hopes of finding a new home. There will even be puppies.

“This is our puppy playroom area so you’ll be able to hang out and play with puppies all day long if that’s your heart desire,” said Roberts.

All of the dogs that will be available for adoption at Canine Cafe have completed New Mexico Pets Alive adoption preparation program. Founders of the non-profit believe the cafe will be a much more relaxing place for them and for those looking for a new furry friend.

“People have the ability to hang out with the dog and know what it might be like to spend time with that dog,” said Roberts.

But there’s more than just adoptions going on. Volunteers are painting the “Retro to the Rescue” Thrift Store that sits right next door. It will be used to raise more money to feed and keep the dogs comfy while they wait to be adopted.

New Mexico Pets Alive is also asking for help, from donations to the thrift store to volunteers willing to hang out with the playful pooches.

“I’m hoping this will attract more people who see the value in this type of model,” said Roberts.

Organizers hope to double their adoption rate from 750 to 1,500 pets in a year. Canine Cafe owners also need some financial help to help keep the adoption side of the non-profit up and running.

Roberts says this job training program would be the first of its kind from an animal welfare organization.

Canine Cafe will start out as a self-serve model, but they hope to eventually serve lattes and cappuccinos. There will not be food served, as to not mess with the dynamic of the dogs, according to Roberts.

Roberts says they hope to also add a job training program. She says it will cover operations, retail, animal care and management. The final job training program will be determined by the level of grants and sponsorships NMPA receives. They expect to have the final job training program outline completed by December 1st.

Once again, they are hoping to open the Canine Cafe on November 15th. Retro to the Rescue Thrift Store is now open Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Both are located at 417 Adams St, SE Albuquerque, 87108.

For more information on Canine Cafe, click here.

For more information on New Mexico Pets Alive, click here. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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