- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 13, 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York could soon join California in allowing dogs in restaurant patios.

The New York state Senate on Wednesday voted to tweak the law that now prohibits pets in restaurants to allow canines in outdoor dining areas.

The bill is sponsored by Sen. Kemp Hannon, a Long Island Republican who says his measure would ensure the dogs don’t pose a health hazard.

Under the bill, restaurants that choose to allow dogs would have to have a separate entrance for the outdoor dining area. Dogs would have to be leashed, and restaurant servers would be prohibited from playing with the animals.

Similar legislation is pending in the Assembly. New York lawmakers say they believe California is the only state currently allowing dogs in restaurant patios.

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