LA eateries may now offer doggie dining

We miss our dogs.

The cocker spaniel is chasing down rabbits in Nebraska, and the Heinz-57 shorthair Aussie shepherd in herding cattle in Kansas.

So, not as much interest in the doggie dining stories.

But if we move to Los Angeles, the dogs would be welcome at many restaurants under a new policy announced Monday.

Effective immediately, eateries with outdoor dining areas have the option to invite dog owners to chow down with their pets, county officials said.

Though it will be up to each restaurants’ discretion whether to allow animals in outdoor dining areas, the new policy is sure to be a boon to local eateries and the larger community, said county Supervisor Don Knabe.

“Guidelines have been established to protect food safety and ensure safety for all patrons,” said Jonathan E. Fielding, the county’s top health officer. “We urge all dog owners to follow these guidelines in order to provide the best possible dining experience for both people and dogs.”

Among other stipulations, the new guidelines prohibit food preparation on the patios and prohibit restaurant employees from having direct contact with pets.
In addition, eatery owners are obligated to follow local city ordinances related to sidewalk, public nuisance and sanitation issues, authorities said.