toronto dog patios

Toronto patios are about to become more dog friendly

Patio season is when Toronto is at its best. There's really nothing like some sun, a few cold beers and celebrating the fact that you and your friends somehow collectively survived the preceding months of frigid misery.

If you're a dog owner (and a beer-drinker) in the city, next summer may be the best patio season yet, because Ontario is planning to make patios — and even restaurants' indoor spaces — more dog-friendly.

Starting January 1, restaurant and bar patrons across the province will be able to bring their dogs into areas where "low-risk" foods such as fruit, pre-packaged food items, and "most snacks" are served alongside alcohol. The proposed regulation change aims to cut unnecessary red tape for small business (and pet) owners.

As it stands now, dogs aren't allowed anywhere where food is prepared or served. Though establishments have found a way around this by not serving food in certain areas, or at all, they've still faced challenges.

Uxbridge staple The Second Wedge Brewing Co. is one of many Ontario breweries that have formally petitioned the province to allow dogs on their premises after their dog-friendly tasting room was called into question.

Breweries have seemed to be at the forefront of the fight to permit pups in food service areas, with Toronto spots like Left Field Brewery, Second Wedge and Black Lab Brewing cutting food offerings to be able to offer dog-friendly spaces.

Though there is evidently demand for more restaurants that Ontarians can tote their pooches to (and people, like myself, who would much prefer to eat next to a cute furry friend than, say, a crying baby) not everyone seems to think that this new proposal is a good idea — or an appropriate allocation of the government's time and energy.

Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez


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