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California Says Yes To Dogs On Restaurant Patios

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Photo: Shutterstock
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Dog-lovers across the state won a victory, or something, this week when Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that permits dogs in outdoor seating areas at restaurants — so long as the outdoor area has its own separate entrance and so long as Mr. Snuffles does not actually dine across from you in a seat.

The law, which takes effect next year, codifies local ordinances that already allowed the bringing of dogs onto restaurant patios in various locales, but still allows locales and restaurants to forbid dog dining if they choose, as the AP reports.

This began as Assembly Bill 1965, sponsored by Assemblymember Mariko Yamada’s (D-Davis), and Yamada issued an appropriately goofy statement following the governor's signature on Thursday. "It will soon be legal to take your beagle with you to dinner,” she said. “With Governor Brown’s signature, restaurateurs in California will see more businesses catering to their customers and the canine companions they love. I wish everyone ‘bone-appétit’."

The law also doesn't pertain to service animals, which are already technically allowed in restaurants.

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Dog lovers in most of L.A. County should expect no changes to their favorite dog-friendly eateries. That's because in 2012, L.A. County made a similar policy change—though that change did not apply to Long Beach, Pasadena or Vernon.