THE secret life of dogs in Byron Bay is pretty cushy.

Naturally the pooches of Byron like doing the same things their owners do; going shopping, checking out the local galleries and strolling on our dog friendly beaches.

They especially like hanging out in cafes, there's always one or two basking in the adoring attention of complete strangers.

Owner of the Byron Bay Barber Co. at Habitat, Beau Ashton reckons a business is just not the same without a dog on the premises.

Byron Bay Barber Co. owner Beau Ashton with his new blue heeler pup.
Byron Bay Barber Co. owner Beau Ashton with his new blue heeler pup. Marc Stapelberg

"I always feel more comfortable when I go into a business and there is a dog there, I'm sure others feel the same way as me," he said.

Mr Ashton is introducing his brand new puppy to his barber shop -- the three month old pup is so new it doesn't have a name -- so any suggestions are welcome.

Beau's new best friend comes into his life following a 12-month mourning period for his previous dog, Jesse. Mr Ashton still carries a photo of her in his wallet.

"I lost Jessie, my 14-year-old red heeler, about a year ago -- she was a shop dog in here right from the start of the business," he said.

"I just needed time to grieve and respect Jessie's life and now the time has come to get another dog," he said.

According to the Office of Local Government, dogs -- except restricted, declared dangerous or menacing dogs -- are allowed in the outdoor dining area of a cafe or restaurant with the business owner's consent.

The restaurant area can't be enclosed and the dog must be on a leash, be on the ground at all times and can have a drink of water (no champagne even if the dog is a pure bred poodle).

Pup in Byron Bay at a cafe relaxing.
Pup in Byron Bay at a cafe relaxing. Marc Stapelberg

An owner of two dogs himself, Dan said man's best friend had been a part of Bayleaf from the get go.

"We have always had a lot of dogs and kids in the cafe, its a community so that is what happens, it's life," he said.

Bay Leaf owner Dan Readman loves how people and dogs get along and the vibe that well behaved dogs can bring to people's lives.
Bay Leaf owner Dan Readman loves how people and dogs get along and the vibe that well behaved dogs can bring to people's lives. Marc Stapelberg

"It adds another element to what makes a good cafe -- a place for the community to meet -- so you should be able to bring well behaved animals.

"I always encourage the dogs, they may be a little unsettled the first time they visit the cafe, but the second time they understand what's going on and they sleep under the table."

Byron Shire Council's 10 essential tips for dog owners

1. Do not allow your dog to roam at any time.

2. Exercise your dog regularly in an off leash exercise area to avoid problems associated with boredom.

3. Ensure your dog is registered (and micro-chipped if applicable).

4. Pick up your dog's faeces from public places and put it in a bin.

5. Train your dog not to bark (Council can help you with this).

6. Ask your adjoining owner if your dog creates any nuisance problems, and correct them.

7. Avoid dog attacks, ensure your dog is friendly and comfortable with people.

8. Keep your dog under 'effective control' when in a public place.

9. Ensure you choose the correct dog for your circumstances.

10. Have your dog desexed if you are not a registered breeder.



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