The Governor of California signed a bill this week allowing dogs to dine with owners in the outdoor section of a restaurant.
Mariko Yamada, the assembly member who championed the bill, wrote on her Facebook page:
"Amidst all the horrific and depressing news around us, I hope this bill helps make people a little happier, and businesses who wish to accommodate diners with dogs safe from being unnecessarily cited".
Restaurant owners aren't forced to allow dogs and can choose to let pets join humans for a meal. There are a few conditions. First, the restaurant must have an entrance so pets don't walk through the indoor dining area to get to the outdoor seating. Dogs will have to be on a leash, well behaved and aren't allowed to sit on chairs or benches.
Some folks aren't so crazy about dogs and dining. The primary concern is public health. What if a dog does his business on the floor? And how about dogs that aren't de-wormed or up-to-date on all vaccinations? Experts say that poses no real health risk. If it were true that dogs created an unhealthy restaurant environment, they would also make owners sick every time they walked into the kitchen or had an indoor accident.
The issue seems to be whether or not a person is a dog lover. Those who treat their pets like family members probably love this law that goes into effect January 1st.
If you live in California, will you bring your pooch to dine with you?
FYI: Sutter Brown, the first dog of California owned by the governor, had no comment.