Jerry Brown signs bill allowing dogs at restaurants

08/21/2014 4:12 PM

08/23/2014 12:12 AM

With a swipe of his pen, Gov. Jerry Brown has ensured Sutter can tag along to some bars and restaurants.

Assembly Bill 1965 makes it easier to bring your pet next time you dine out or grab a drink. 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 pooches on patios. The prohibition derives from public health protections trying to 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.

AB 1965 lifts the ban while preserving some powers to banish barkers. A business still has final say over whether dogs are allowed, and cities will still be able to pass local regulations keeping outdoor patios Fido-free.

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