Caffe Nero ‘refused to give a guide dog water’ and people were furious

A branch of coffee chain Caffe Nero has sparked outrage after reportedly refusing to give water to a blind man’s guide dog.

The shop in Exmouth, Devon told 40-year-old Olliver Gibbons that his seven-year-old Labrador Sydney could not have a drink despite it being a hot day outside.

Gibbons, a customer in the store accompanied by his friend Helen Fox, confirmed that the shop refused to give water to Sydney, who was being rewarded with a hard-earned rest.

Olliver’s friend Helen Fox, who helps him live independently, told the Exmouth Journal : “I said, ‘he’s a guide dog’, but they just said ‘no’ and walked off.

“It was really hot, he had been working and we had just taken him off the harness for a free run.

“I was taken aback – any dog should be allowed a drink, but he is also a working dog.

“Ollie doesn’t want to go back again. It made him quite sad, really. He was asking why they were being like that.”

Sydney eventually got a drink at Tempus the Jeweller in Albion Street.

Guide Dogs South West spokesman Clive Wood said: “It’s very disappointing that the staff in this Caffe Nero made a decision to deny providing water to this gentleman’s guide dog on such a warm day.

“It’s disappointing that the level of customer service fell lower than expected from a national chain.”

An RSPCA spokesperson said: “It’s extremely concerning to hear that a coffee shop refused to provide drinking water for a service dog whose handler was a customer.

“We would expect all businesses to show kindness and compassion towards all animals, but particularly to service dogs.

“Service dogs are always by their handler’s side and provide a valuable, life-changing service, so we would hope that businesses would cater to their needs, as well as that of their owners.”

A spokesman for Caffe Nero said: “We are aware of this incident, and are in the process of investigating exactly what happened.

So what do you think?

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