The Hand in Hand, Wimbledon, south-west London won the accolade, which recognises the deserving pubs that embrace ‘paw power’ and welcome man and his ‘best friend’.
Hand in Hand licensee Christine Blackman said: “We were absolutely blown away when we found out that we had won this award, with many screams of delight and members of staff jumping around!
“This means a huge amount to us. We may be small, but we are hugely community-focused and being dog-friendly is at the core of our business.
‘Wall of fame’
“We actively encourage all of our team to engage with our canine-owning customers and so many of our customers are greeted by name – human and four-pawed.
“We are launching a doggy ‘wall of fame’ with photos of our superstar pup visitors and according to our customers, we should change our name to the Hand in Paw!”
The competition, run by online dog-sitting platform DogBuddy, was judged by the dog-loving public, along with representatives from the RSPCA, The Morning Advertiser, Your Dog Magazine and CEO of DogBuddy, Richard Setterwall.
Regional runner-up for Wales – the Poundffald Inn recently launched a Sunday lunch for dogs, where owners and pets alike can visit the pub for their traditional Sunday roast dinner.
The Swansea pub saw a 25% increase in footfall thanks to the food offer and licensee Alyson Jones said feedback had been nothing but positive.
Other regional runners-up for the awards were:
- Scotland – The Earl of Marchmont, Edinburgh
- Northern Ireland – The Fullterton Arms, Ballycastle
- North East – Brandling Villa, Newcastle-upon-Tyne
- North West – The Caledonia, Liverpool
- East Midlands – The Brown Cow, Mansfield
- West Midlands – The Royal Oak, Evesham
- South East – The Fox & Hounds, Reading
- South West – The Victoria Inn, Salcombe
- London – Hand in Hand, Wimbledon
DogBuddy founder and CEO Richard Setterwall said: “We launched these awards to really find the cream of the crop when it comes to dog-friendly pubs and with these fantastic inns, we have done just that.
“We value dog welfare and care above all, and the winning pubs reflect these same values in their superb service – going the extra mile for the comfort of their canine visitors.
“We hope these awards inspire dog lovers up and down the country to discover their local pubs. Congratulations to the Hand in Hand, very well deserved.”