Disclaimer: The photo above isn’t of a dog at a Raleigh restaurant but was chosen for relevancy.
Sometimes it amazes me the rules that we “interpret” not for the good of our society, but for the satisfaction of officials and “regulations”. The latest is directed at dogs and the health hazard they create by hanging out on local restaurant patios.
The N&O published a story on the new regulation in Friday’s paper. In the article, they state that “Wake County food safety officials, citing their interpretation of state rules, have started telling restaurants that canines are no longer allowed at outside tables.” What is this rule that has been interpreted? Read below:
The provision that local and state officials cite as their authority for banning dogs is contradictory. The first sentence says “live animals shall not be allowed in a food preparation or storage area.” That doesn’t appear to exclude live animals from dining areas.
But officials point to an exception to the rule that allows “service animals accompanying persons with disabilities in areas that are not used for food preparation.” Both Breed love and Larry Michael, who heads the food protection branch in the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources, interpret the exception to mean that nonservice animals are excluded from dining areas, which includes both inside and outside tables.
John Morris of Goodnight Raleigh’s dog Elsi at Sadlacks
Seriously? Did Wake County food officials use a “not neither nor but both and” flip flop reasoning to state that dogs aren’t allowed on restaurant patios and (essentially) in public space? Surely the Wake County health officials have more pressing issues to investigate. The last thing we want to do in a fragile economy is deter customers from our locally grown restaurants with such a misleading interpretation of a rule. What next? Cats banned from trash cans and junkyards?