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Oregon cracks down on dogs in grocery stores

The Oregon Department of Agriculture is reminding Oregonians that dogs aren’t welcome in grocery stores unless they’re providing a service to the disabled.

“Of all the complaints we receive … pets in a grocery store — especially dogs — is by far our number one issue,” said officials said in a press release on the DOA website. “We’ve received complaints about dogs urinating in the aisle of a grocery store, jumping up and licking packages of meat, or sniffing food items on the shelf.”

The new public awareness campaign uses dog-shaped posters that will provide definitions of service animal and “tips” for consumers who see pets inside stores. Pamphlets will also be distributed to business owners to help them “know what to ask” and “when to ask” when an animal enters a store.

State officials say it is against state and federal law for live animals to enter establishments selling or preparing food,  unless the animal falls under a specific exemption of the U.S. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.  The ADA defines a service animal as “any guide dog, signal dog or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability.”

Citations will be issued to businesses in violation, not animal owners, according to the DOA website.


Comment from Valerie
Time November 9, 2010 at 12:40 pm

My comment is for the people who bring in Not Service Dogs but Small Breed dogs that clearly have no service experience, For instance a woman holding a dog like a foot ball, The woman who places her small dog in a cart or purse. Tell me how that is a service dog. I am all for Service Dogs that actually work they help the disabled owner in many way and everyone knows that you should stay away because the Dog is Working. These dogs are trained and have vest telling others that they are a working dog. Tell me how a Terrier, Yorkie or any other small breed dog is a working dog. I live in Oregon and I am planning on writting an amendment or bill stating that a Small Breed Dog is NOT ALLOWED IN ANY STORE!!!! Do these store managers or owners realize that if someone’s child is bit they can be sued.

Comment from Lu
Time December 22, 2010 at 4:22 am

I, too, am working on an initiative that would allow dogs under 15 lbs that are in a restraint (carrier) to be allowed to accompany owners into stores – including grocery stores. How is it a service dog does not impose a health risk and other dogs do? Dog whiners (Valerie) man up. We can’t make you illegal and you annoy the hell out of us.

Comment from zeppelin
Time December 27, 2010 at 4:03 am

What is with this horrible stereo type where everyone thinks a service dog has to be huge?? A dog’s size doesn’t matter if it has the ability to do the job its been trained to do. Little dogs are incredible service dogs too. People who say other wise are ignorant and should do there research before sticking thier foot in thier mouth and sound as stupid as they really are……
There are ton’s of diffrent diseases, disabilites and handicaps small and big dogs are great for.
For example I personally have a service dog. He is a 6 pound little YORKIE. Certified and trained and was the best in his class. Magnificant service dog!!! As good as any 100lb german shepard could ever be. Stop discrimenating against little dogs that work hard for thier owners. My 6lb yorkie is a siezure alert dog and takes wonderful care of me. Always lets me know when a siezure is coming so I can get to safety. He can also get the neighbor if I need assistance. Can also dial 9-1-1 if my siezure last too long and he has done it.
Small dogs can do many services and are happy to do so. I wouldn’t be alive today if it wasn’t for my 6 pound yorkie. He has saved my life twice. So Valerie, don’t be ignorant, service dogs are truly special and deserve respect no matter what size they may be…..

Comment from Jaide
Time February 14, 2011 at 4:23 pm

I think someone should introduce a bill banning young children from stores unless they are confined to a stroller. I have seen people with small dogs in stores and never once been bothered by one, usually they are kept in a purse or carried. However I stopped going to WalMart at all because of the annoying children.

Comment from karen
Time August 20, 2011 at 11:24 am

Dog owners should have some consideration for others who have allergies and/or fear of dogs. They may HAVE TO go to the store, but pet dogs do not. The right to own a dog should not infringe on the health needs of others. I love dogs, and I AM considerate of others. It’s easy.

Comment from NANCY
Time February 13, 2012 at 3:59 pm


Comment from Alice
Time November 9, 2012 at 3:56 pm

@ zeppelin: Yes, many small dogs are service dogs and when you take it out into the public it should be wearing its service vest so that everyone will know it is a service animal and is currently “working”. If you do this there will be no problem.

Comment from Zamora
Time December 6, 2015 at 3:10 am

Whether dogs are family or not they do not belong where I shop for food. Don’t care how clean their owners say they are.