Denver health code causing trouble for breweries and K-9 visitors

DENVER – There was a familiar sound this Sunday at Declaration Brewing.

One not heard there in quite a while. Amid the clinks of glasses against taps, Bronco fans cheering, and flowing conversation a bark could be heard!

“It’s all culture,” explained co-owner Mike Blanford. “In Denver and in Colorado, being able to go outside and be a part of the outdoor environment with your animal is a major part of who we are.”

For years, Denver’s craft beer culture mixed freely with the city’s dog-friendly vibe.

Breweries often welcomed customers with dogs until last year when city inspectors began to enforce a lesser-known Denver health code classifying beer as food, forcing dogs further away.

A handful of breweries have responded by providing space that adheres to the regulations allowing customers to safely have dogs and a beer.

“It’s delineation,” Mike said. “We have to create a clear and physical difference between the dog patio and the remaining patios.”

A thirsty dog lover who shows up to Declaration will notice a specific entrance for them. They must keep their dogs on a leash at all times. Clean up after them. Not leave dogs unattended, and they must keep them in the dog patio space.

“We’re excited to have that sector of folks back at our spot,” Mike said. “We really missed them.”

The absence of K-9 companioned craft-beer consumers has been very apparent to Mike. He’s excited to serve this client base at his brewery again.

“Beer is as Colorado as rolling around in the hills with your dog, and being able to combine the two is the best thing ever.”

© 2017 KUSA-TV

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