In a move that brings progressives and libertarians together better than a runaway defense budget, Gotham has banned dogs from bars:
Since the health department adopted a letter grade system for bars and restaurants last year, bar owners say, health inspectors are allowing no wiggle room for four-legged patrons.
The stricter enforcement is apparently bringing to an end a rich tradition of dog-friendly bars in New York.
The health department issued 469 violations for live animals in food-service sites from July 1, 2010, to June 30, 2011, though the agency did not provide a breakdown of the different kinds of offending animals.
During inspections, many owners said they were surprised to learn that dogs were not allowed even in outdoor seating areas. Neither does a bar’s dearth of actual food products provide any cover. “Beer, wine and spirits have always been classified as food,” a department spokeswoman wrote in an e-mail. Only service dogs are permitted in spaces that serve food or drink of any kind.
Chicago allows dogs on outdoor patios when the owners pay a modest fee, but officially prohibits dogs in bars as well. However, I can't imagine the Chicago health department cracking down. There'd be outrage—not just from the dog owners, but also from the pub owners, who might get mad enough to stop paying
bribes other license fees.
Oh, the humanity.