New York Senate Votes For Bill Allowing Dogs In Outdoor Dining Areas
Great news for Foodies! This summer, you’ll be able to dine out with your dog in New York restaurant patios.
In a bid to ban the oft requested doggie-bag once and for all, the New York State senate approved a bill that lets food service establishments welcome canine companions into their outdoor eating areas. It was felt that far too much time was being devoted to re-packaging leftover foodstuffs destined for Fido and that a tinfoil shortage was inevitable if measures weren’t taken to eliminate this growing trend.
Gotcha! I was just kidding about the doggie bag part but not about the restaurant patios going to the dogs – literally! It seems the New York State senate recently voted 60-0 in support of the bill and now that warm weather is upon us, pet parents rejoice as an impromptu visit to their local patio doesn’t mean Rover has to stay home.
Apparently lawmakers describe dog owners as among their most vocal constituencies when it comes to their rights and the State Assembly is now reviewing its version of the same bill.
Sponsoring the bill is Assemblywoman Linda B. Rosenthal who is a self-proclaimed animal champion and hears frequently from pet parents pushing for concessions that will help make life with their fur child a little easier. Under this new bill, dining dogs will need to remain leashed, enter via the patio (versus through the restaurant), will not be allowed into any outdoor areas where food is prepared and servers will be prohibited from playing with them – no matter how cute they are. Additionally, the bill forbids communal pet drinking bowls, instead requiring single-use disposable containers.
If the measure is approved, individual restaurants will be allowed to set their own policy. They may still opt to ban dogs from their patio areas if they feel they may lose their dog-averse clientele, or they could choose to set up a separate section for patrons arriving with their pup.
Of course feeling snubbed are cat parents who question the fairness of a bill that addresses canines but not felines. The bill does not make any mention of letting cats in outdoor restaurants.
From personal experience in a multi-cat household, I value the opportunity of being able to dine solo and not have “someone” climbing onto my lap, drinking the milk before it’s poured into my tea or needing the use of a lint roller each time I get up from my chair. But that’s just me!