Dog Friendly Outdoor Dining

The City of Nashua Division of Public Health and Community Services (DPHCS) Environmental Health Department is happy to announce the adoption of a “Dog Friendly Outdoor Dining” variance approved by the Board of Health on May 9, 2018.

Restaurants with outdoor dining areas may now apply to the Environmental Health Department for a variance to the 2009 FDA Food Code allowing companion dogs in outdoor dining areas of the food service establishment provided the rules outlined in the variance are followed.  This variance only applies to dogs and does not apply to any other animal. A variance will be valid for a calendar year and may be reapplied for. An outdoor dining area means any outdoor area, under the control of the restaurant, where customers eat.  However, dogs must enter the outdoor dining area directly from the outside and shall not enter outdoor dining areas by going through the inside of the restaurant or through any area where food is stored or prepared.  It is against NH state law for patron companion dogs to enter a food service establishment (RSA 466:44). If restaurants with outdoor dining elect not to allow companion dogs in outdoor dining, they still must allow service dogs as provided in RSA 167-D.

Any restaurant allowing dogs in outdoor dining MUST hold an approved variance from the Environmental Health Department

Please find below links to the Dog Friendly Outdoor Dining Variance, Fact Sheet, and Restaurant Application.   


Dog Friendly Outdoor Dining Information