Jerry Brown Signs Bill That Makes It OK to Bring Pooch to Restaurants


*I thought it was a bit peculiar when I visited a local bar in Northern California recently, and there, amongst the Saturday night regulars, sat “Fido” – just as comfortable as he pleased.

That’s because Gov. Jerry Brown made history recently when he signed Assembly Bill 1965, which says it’s OK to bring Fido into bars and restaurants.

Assembly Bill 1965 means you don’t have to leave Fido at home the next time you want to dine out or grab a drink at the local pub. The bill permits dogs to join owners at the outdoor sections of food establishments, provided the canine companions are under control and not barred by a city ordinance or a restaurant owner.

Technically, the laws on the books bar our four-legged friends from patios because of public health statutes that separate animals from places where food is prepared.

The prohibition was being enforced unevenly, according to the office of the bill’s author, Assemblywoman Mariko Yamada, D-Davis, with some counties ignoring it and others cracking down.

Though AB 1965 lifts the ban, it does keep powers in place to ensure the animal is not a nuisance. All-in-all, businesses still have the final say on whether dogs are allowed, and cities will still be able to pass local regulations keeping outdoor patios spot-free.

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