On summer weekends, as shadows stretch over the fresh-mown grass, and the flag hangs torpid in the swelter, it’s only natural to want to share a beer with your dog.
At least, that’s how the ad copy might read—although politically correct “veterinarians” will tell you that dogs should never be given beer, because their livers don’t metabolize alcohol in the same way humans’ do. Other ingredients like hops, too, can reportedly “cause violent reactions in many canines.” It’s clear from information at www.canigivemydog.com/beer that “no matter how much they beg, alcoholic beverages should be off limits to pets.”
So it’s none too soon that this month a company called Woof and Brew released a beer specifically for dogs.
It has no alcohol, or hops, or carbonation, but it’s otherwise meant to recreate the beer experience as closely as possible in a way that’s safe for the digestive tracts of dogs. The formula contains barley malt, dandelion, flax, and “chicken flavoring”—like so many good beers.
The point is not to mimic the flavor, though, but to foster social bonding and ritual, explains Steve Bennett, managing director of the U.K.-based Woof and Brew, “so that human can share a beer of their own and a beer for their dog as well.” This is Bennett’s first attempt at dog beer, though the company has been making herbal teas and tonics for dogs since 2013.