New York’s ‘Dining With Dogs’ Bill Passes Both Houses

New Yorkers may start to hear more customers asking for a side order of biscuits. And no, they aren’t talking about those flaky, bread balls, rather a treat for their pups.

The state has just passed its “Dining with Dogs” bill which allows customers to bring their dogs into outdoor restaurant areas. The dogs must be leashed and restaurants can choose not to participate.

Although the Health Department has expressed some concern, restaurant owners think this will help attract more customers to their establishments.

“We don’t know how many restaurants will take advantage of this option once permitted, but allowing restaurants the flexibility to serve patrons with their pet dogs will allow dog owners a new dining option and let restaurants determine if they have a demand for this service,” the Empire State Restaurant and Tavern Association wrote in a memo supporting the bill.

Related: Dogs Are One Step Closer to Being Allowed in New York Restaurants

And while dogs joining their owners at restaurants is prevalent in New York City, it isn’t as common in other parts of the states – but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. Chris Maceyak,owner of Bridge View Tavern in Sleepy Hollow, told USA Today that dogs are already welcome and it has never been an issue for patrons that don’t have dogs.

“We have no issues, we’re dog-friendly here,” Maceyak told the outlet. “Generally, the rules for dogs are the same for people or kids: If any of those living creatures are being uncooperative or difficult, we speak to them.”

The bill has been sent to Gov. Andrew Cuomo to review and sign.

Related: At Five Leaves, Heath Ledger’s Legacy Lives On — And the Dogs Thank Him

Image via Flickr/Jill Chen

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