New California Law Allows Pets to Dine Outdoors at Restaurants

“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.”


A new law has been passed in California that will allow pet owners to dine together with their pets at restaurants outdoors when patio seating is available.  Governor Jerry Brown, proud pet parent of a Welsh corgi named Sutter signed the bill into law together, and they couldn’t be happier about the decision.

The rules seem pretty basic.  The dog must remain leashed, can only be seated in an outdoor-dining section, and must remain well behaved at all times.  Also, the dog cannot be brought into any areas where food is being prepared.  So it all seems fairly simple.

Assembly member Mariko Yamada was the one championing the bill from the outset.  In a message posted on her Facebook page, she wished everybody “bone-appetit.”  She also added in the message, “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.”

The law fully goes into effect as of January the 1st.  People have been allowed at particular hot spots in California to bring their dogs and be seated outside for a while now, but have been doing so at their own risk.  Up to now, the practice was illegal, and business owners would sometimes face fines for allowing it.

David Wiesner, chef and owner of Siena Bistro in Willow Glen has always had a pro-doggy patio policy there every Thursday evening.

According to Wiesner, “The law going into effect in January is the law that I thought was already in effect.”

Along with Wiesner, many other California restaurant owners believed that there wasn’t any laws against having your dog dine with you outdoors.  Now, they are 100% sure of it!

105 thoughts on “New California Law Allows Pets to Dine Outdoors at Restaurants

  1. I see a lawsuit from people who are allergic to dogs or scared of dogs. For every new law there has to be lawsuits.

  2. Skylar WHAT? Seriously. Come on. My dog and I have visited many many dining establishments. Never seen fellow dogs do either of those things. Frat bros, however? Yeah. I’ve seen them do both. And bites? Good lord. Aren’t you just a pay my life through a lawsuit waiting to happen, Jason.

  3. Jason appears to have deleted his post, so I deleted mine. Where I live, several restaurants and two wineries happily allow our pets on their patios. I’m pleased Gov Brown has supported this practice.

  4. Wow. Suddenly even more grateful for living in such a dog friendly area. My dog is a regular at several local restaurants and pubs, as well as goes in with me to order my coffee at my favorite coffee shop. She’s welcomed almost everywhere in our small town!

    1. I second Tim G’s motion for data and raise it six new steepled Ed. buildings and three Family Life Centers.Nate “see” Tim G, or “fold” your hand.“Nate,What makes for a healthy church beyond numbers? Just curious. You have made a bold statement here. Would love to hear your basis for the statement.”

  5. I love this…..but….what about those that don’t want to share their dining area with pets? What issues will pop up? I can only imagine the people who will make this a pain in the……….

  6. I own a diner in NY & my husband & I would turn it into a diner open to our fur babies & owners !! I wish it was allowed here:(

    1. I live in Berlin, and getting used to seeing dogs underfoot in restaurants took a little bit. Totally easy and the dogs are well-trained and behaved (and mostly OFF leash).

  7. wait, NOT allowing pets at outdoor dining is a thing? I live in Milwaukee and its sort of assumed unless posted that you can bring your dogs with if you eat or drink on a patio or sidewalk.

  8. Most places allow pets in patio dining areas in Lexington, Ky. I thought it was okay everywhere as long as it was outside. We must be really dog friendly here because there are several bars and other places that allow dogs and even host pet events.

  9. If people are allergic they can sit inside or further away, just as I’m forced to do when there are smokers outside. Also, babies at restaurants are worse. At least my dogs know where the appropriate place to potty is not like babies who stink up the entire restaurant with diapers. Portland has been doing this for years, it’s great.

  10. In Europe they even allow your dogs inside of restaurants. I know my dogs are better behaved, and cleaner, than some humans I’ve seen!

  11. It’s been great since it turned into something else we can enjoy with our two furry babies. I call it “A DATE WITH OUR BABIES”

  12. Been taking my dogs for years to many restaurants and dinning on the outside patio in So Cal….love it!!! People come over and pet my dog a lot too!!

  13. My dog Whitney is better behaved than most children, and has better table manners than most people I know!

  14. Here in Europe we can dine with our dogs in most restaurants (indoor or outdoor), depending on the restaurant owner only. It has never been an issue.

  15. Here in Austria, we can dine with our dogs in almost any restaurants at any time. All restaurants provide bowls with water for dogs without having to ask for it, some have special menus for dogs, too. And most of the time this service ist also free.

  16. Don’t worry about “open carry” and bringing guns to school, but don’t you fxxking dare show up at a restaurant with your dog…! MURCAAAAAA!

  17. I think we are still in the Dinosaur age. Many dogs are much better behaved than a lot of people. As long as the dogs are on a lead and can’t bother anyone I say go for it. .Another thing I would like to see dog parks where the dogs can run free. Over east some of them have a river passing through them. Dogs seem to be treated like a nuisance. Wish our council Armadale would give doggie people and their pets a go. Probably as I write they are meeting to see the next ban they can enforce. They suck

    1. Tämä tarkennukseksi niille, jotka eivät ole perehtyneet ravintoasioihin tarkemmin. Eli kauramaitoa voi käyttää lehmänmaidon tapaan, mutta ravintoarvoiltaan (aminohappokoostumus)on erilainen kuin tavallisessa maidossa. Nostin tämän esille sen vuoksi, että otsikko saattaa johtaa harhaan ja ihmiset luulla että kauralla voi korvata maidon täysipainoisempaa aminohappokoostumusta. Kuitenkin syömällä monipuolisesti, me saamme ruuasta tarpeeksi kaikkia aminohappoja eikä tästä luultavimmin (jos ruokavalio on kunnossa) tarvitse huolehtia.

  18. Wait, you need a law to confrim that? Here in Slovenia most restaurants allow dogs outside, some even inside. Only dickhead restaurant owners forbid it. And there’s a place near my house where they prepare a meal for your dog – free of charge. My doggy got beef with fresh veggies the last time I was there 🙂

  19. This is really neat to read about. In Toronto most people dining at outdoor patios sit by the edge with their dogs leashed beside the restaurant fence on the outside portion.They can be seen there and be patted too.Often restuarants leave out a bowl of water by the entrance for dogs walking by etc.

  20. I love dogs and have had them all my life but I don’t get why people feel the need to take there dogs in stores and now to restaurants. Take your dog for a nice long walk or to the dog park!

  21. If my dog Luna is not allowed in a restaurant I go some place else. She is worth going wherever I go! She is more polite than most people are!

  22. Here in Guelph, our dogs are permitted to be with us if they are well mannered & a bowl of fresh water will be provided for them anytime you visit… dogs are welcome in most shops too unless it’s a grocery store.

  23. I find it ironic that everyone wants health insurance even though health insurance makes health care unaffordable.That’s the problem with too many legislators – they have no understanding of economics and because of that lack of understanding they end up damaging the very thing they want to ‘save’.The have good intentions….but we know where that road leads.

  24. Rick,It sucks to have to have em rip. I went over the bars on my mtb and shredded the toe on a pair a few weeks ago. If the rip was your fault, not a product defect, it can be repaired. It just doesn’t look spiffy. CheersMichael Carroll

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