Assistance dogs allowed everywhere and it is mandatory
The second exception concerns service dogs who can enter anywhere – without exception – and against whom no prohibition can be formulated.
“The three Regions have each adopted a decree relating to accessibility to people accompanied by assistance dogs in public places,explains Jean Sébastien Walhin, director of communication at the FASFC.Persons accompanied by an assistance dog (recognized as such by a certificate) have the right to access public places. This right applies both to people with disabilities accompanied by an assistance dog and to the families and instructors who train these assistance dogs.
The exercise of this right may not involve any costs. Denying access to an assistance dog can result in a fine of €15 to €25 in the Flemish Region, €26 to €100 in the Walloon Region and €50 to €100 in the Brussels Region.
Why yes to the restaurant and not to the supermarket?
You may have seen appearing in the entrance of some stores, a poster similar to the one illustrating this article and which was recently photographed at Horta on the chaussée de Bruxelles, in Gaurain-Ramecroix.
This last establishment is also characterized by the kind of stores in which our pets are welcomed with kindness throughout the year.
But what is the rule in other shops, local or supermarkets?
It is enough to reread what we wrote at the beginning of this article to understand that, in this case, our four-legged friends can actually be welcomed everywhere except where there are food areas.
When we ask the FASFC the question of what justifies this rule and how it differs from that which applies to restaurants, Jean Sébastien Walhin answers us:“on the one hand, because the law is made that way. Moreover, in the restaurant, the animal does not have the possibility of extending its curiosity and simply sniffing food (see licking/starting a package) because he stays at his master’s table.”
Which is not necessarily the case on the shelves of a supermarket where he wanders around and where certain stalls (of food) are at the height of truffles.