It’s a Streatham dog’s life!
Written by Pip Dragonetti
The decision to get a dog is a big one. My partner and I always knew we wanted one but the timing never seemed quite right… ‘let’s wait until we own a property’… ‘let’s wait until we own a property with a garden’… ‘let’s wait until we move out of London.’
In the end, the decision was made for us. While we were on holiday in France last year we got a text from a friend saying a buyer had dropped out and did we want a Border Terrier. A picture followed the text and we were sold. What’s french for JFDI?
The week after we returned from holiday, two became three as we picked up the tiny, adorable and mischievous Arvo. The next few weeks with him could be best described as organised chaos. It turns out, house training a puppy is quite difficult if you live in a first floor flat. Working from home with a puppy is quite difficult, if you actually want to work. Leaving the house with a puppy is quite difficult as puppies are only supposed to walk for 5-10 minutes a day, that limited us to the end of the road and back.
What isn’t difficult however, is living in Streatham with a puppy and now dog (he’s 15 months old and yes we’re immensely proud, thank you for asking). One of the first things we read in the puppy book (yes, we bought a book) is how important it is to socialise your puppy and at this at least, we excelled. One of Arvo’s very first outings was to Streatham Wine House on the high street and since then he’s become a regular. When he was four-months old I walked in to find Arvo asleep on the bar. A few months later we lost him in the cellar, no doubt seeking out the chianti. At a Sunday screening of Singin’ In the Rain Arvo took exception to Debbie Reynolds jumping out of a cake and started barking – the other patrons found it funny, I think.
As Arvo got older and we got bolder we explored more of what Streatham has to offer when your four legged friend becomes part of the package and the answer is, a lot. If you’re in need of brunch or fine dining then the well loved Hood is a good place to start. Your furry friend may not fancy the lamb with organic pearled spelt but you can always take some gravy bones in your pocket. Carrying on down the high street you get to Estate Office Coffee, the perfect place to grab a flat white on your way to the common on a Saturday morning.
If you’re feeling the need for both a delicious and deliciously priced pizza, you can’t do much better than Azzuri where Arvo made fast friends with the owner’s greyhound. If you work from home but fancy a change in pace then Boyce Da Roca is another dog friendly outfit that offers plug sockets, smashed avocado and a water bowl.
After all that hard work you can reward yourself with a refreshing beverage at the old world bohemian styled Pratts and Payne. Inside or out, dogs are made welcome and they even have a jar of dog biscuits for which to treat your faithful hound. Speaking of pubs, if you need a little space and the wonders of nature to inspire you, follow your Rookery stroll with a stop at The Bull, where dogs are part of the furniture and you can get a ham hock the size of your head.
Dog friendly pubs, bars and restaurants isn’t all Streatham has to offer however. We also have some great dog walking services to help you when you’re at work or on holiday. We love the guys at The Pet Manny, who send pictures of our pup when he’s in their care and who are true Streatham locals.
In short, Streatham is a great place for dog owners and dog lovers alike and these are just some of my favourite dog friendly establishments – there are many more. Since having Arvo, we’ve explored more of our local area and got to know people up and down the high street. With Streatham Common, Tooting Common and Brockwell Park all nearby you’re well served for walkies and there’s nothing better than sharing a pint and a packet of crisps with your hairy son or daughter after a bracing walk.
Follow Arvo’s adventures on Instagram @Arvo.Adventures