New policy allows dogs on restaurant patios

The Mississippi State Department of Health has a new policy that will allow dogs on restaurant patios

Posted: Nov 7, 2019 9:21 PM
Updated: Nov 8, 2019 9:45 AM

TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -  Starting Friday, the Mississippi State Department of Health will allow dogs on restaurant patios.

However, there are restrictions: 

  • Disposable dishes and utensils are required in the dog-friendly area.
  • Employees are not allowed to pet or touch the animals.
  • Pet owners must keep their dogs on a leash and under control. 
  • The restaurant must have a separate outside entrance into a designated outdoor dog-friendly area that includes proper signage defining the area.
  • Pet dogs are not permitted to travel through indoor or non-designated outdoor portions of the restaurant.
  • Service dogs are allowed indoors in customer areas.

If the restaurant agrees to the policy and requirements are met, they can apply for a variance to MSDH Food code to allow pet dogs.

Once the application and the $165 inspection fee is received, MSDH will come out and inspect the facility. 

If granted the dog-friendly variance, the MSDH will inspect the restaurant twice a year to make sure it is in compliance. 

You can find more information here. 

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