Gas Station’s Dog Must Go, Health Dept. SaysFriday, December 04, 2009 7:33:07 AM
CLEARWATER -- A 5-year-old Labrador who has been working at a Pinellas County gas station is about to lose his job.
Cody may not be on the payroll at the BP station on U.S. Highway 19 and Nursery Road, but he has his own work shirt and name tag.
Inspectors with the State Department of Agriculture cited the owner, Karim Mansour, telling him Cody has to go. They say animals aren't allowed in places that sell food.
"I understand the state has a job to do which is to keep people safe," Mansour said. "But at the same time I don't prepare food here. Everything comes from the factory, pre-packaged. I don't see how a dog hair is going to get in a bag of chips or a Snickers bar."
Mansour says he started bringing Cody to work for companionship and protection.
He says no customers have ever complained to him about the dog being there. He says he is looking into his options, but for the time being, he plans to heed the warning and leave Cody home.
According to the FDA, dogs can be allowed in stores under certain circumstances as long as no food contamination can result.
Information from News 13’s Bright House Networks affiliate, Bay News 9, was used in this report.