11Mar2020... 0946h







AN ACT relative to allowing dogs in outdoor dining areas of restaurants.


SPONSORS: Rep. Horn, Merr. 2


COMMITTEE: Commerce and Consumer Affairs






This bill allows dogs in outdoor dining areas of restaurants.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

11Mar2020... 0946h 20-2639





In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty


AN ACT relative to allowing dogs in outdoor dining areas of restaurants.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  Dogs on Restaurant Outdoor Dining Areas.  RSA 466:44, II is repealed and reenacted to read as follows:

II.(a)  A restaurant owner may allow dogs onto any outdoor dining area at his or her place of business, if:

(1)  Such dogs and owners access the outdoor dining area from the exterior of the restaurant, regardless of whether food or drink are served in such outdoor dining area.

(2)  All food is prepared and all utensils stored in the interior of the restaurant.

(3)  The owner allowing dogs shall prominently display a sign at all public entrances advising patrons that dogs are allowed on the premises.  The sign shall state the following text in English:

Companion dogs are only allowed in certain outdoor dining areas of this establishment.

Only service dogs are allowed in other parts of this establishment.

Your companion dog must be licensed and currently vaccinated against rabies to remain in the outdoor dining area with you.

You are responsible for controlling your dog at all times.

(4)  The owner of such dog shall control his or her dog within the outdoor dining area.

(5)  The owner of a dog shall keep the dog on the ground and out of the aisles of the outdoor dining area and shall not allow the dog to eat or drink using glasses, plates, or utensils from the restaurant.

(6)  The staff of the restaurant shall not pet or play with the dog.

(7)  The restaurant owner may ask a dog owner to remove his or her threatening or aggressive dog from the outdoor dining area.

(8)  The restaurant owner calls 911 if such dog bites or hurts another person.

(9)  Restaurant staff who do not prepare or serve food shall clean up after dogs in outdoor dining areas.

(10)  Such dogs shall not be allowed in food preparation or production areas.

(b)  In this paragraph "patio" means an open air, exterior, paved space with an entrance separate from the restaurant.   

(c)  This paragraph shall not apply to service animals as defined by RSA 167-D:1, IV.

2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.