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Cathedral Quarter bar champions canine customers

The Dirty Onion partners with local dog charity and becomes a dog-friendly bar

Pictured are Tim Herron, general manager of The Dirty Onion and Rob Durston, co-owner of Lucy’s Trust.

The Dirty Onion in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter is throwing open its doors to welcome furry, four-legged customers, becoming part of a select list of venues that are dog-friendly in the city centre.

Dogs can now soak up the sun alongside their owners in the beer garden or enjoy a lazy day by the blazing fire inside the bar in winter months.  They will also be offered refreshments, tasty treats and special doggy Dirty Onion merchandise will be available to purchase.

The bar has also announced a partnership with local dog rescue charity, Lucy’s Trust, to help raise funds for the charity and to build awareness of the important role the charity plays in helping Northern Ireland’s stray dogs.

Based in Co. Antrim, Lucy’s Trust is run by partners Olivia Kennedy and Rob Durston and was set up in response to the growing need for rescue space for dogs.  The charity was named after Olivia’s childhood dog, Lucy, who came to her family as a stray, and has become a sanctuary for dogs in need.

Tim Herron, general manager at The Dirty Onion, said:

“It’s great to see Belfast growing as a dog friendly city and I’m very excited that The Dirty Onion is helping to lead the way with this.  We have joined a handful of other venues in the city centre to open our doors to dogs and we hope to see others do the same in the future.

“This initiative has also given us the opportunity to partner with Lucy’s Trust, which provides much needed care for some of Northern Ireland’s stray dogs, and I’m looking forward to raising funds for the charity”

Rob Durston, co-owner of Lucy’s Trust said:

“My wife Olivia and I initially opened Lucy’s Trust as a way of addressing over-capacity issues at a local dog pound.  Since then, the charity has developed to become a sanctuary for dogs that are in most need of help or that cannot be rehomed due to behavioural issues.

“To date we have rehomed over 300 dogs and we’re currently looking after 42 dogs on a family farm in Antrim.  Olivia, who is a veterinary surgeon, will work with these dogs on a one-to-one basis to help them overcome any difficulties to become happy, healthy dogs.

“Some owners can find it stressful to leave their pets at home so it’s great to know that more and more places in Belfast are opening their doors to welcome dogs into their venues.”

The Dirty Onion will be running four events throughout the year to raise funds for Lucy’s Trust and dog lovers are being encouraged to show their support.  The first event will be a Hot Dawg BBQ this summer, followed by a Pug Quiz in October. A Big Doggy Picnic away day will take place next spring, with a fourth event to still be confirmed.

For more information on upcoming doggy events, visit, follow on Twitter @TheDirtyOnion or Facebook at  You can also follow Lucy’s Trust on Facebook at

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