Socialization is important for humans and pets alike, what is the best way to socialize? To go out shopping, eat at restaurants, and to be out and about. Well, good news there are more pet friendly stores which will allow you to bring your pet. Recently, we went to Restoration Hardware when they offered Pia Pia a treat which surprised me that they would have a treat let alone offer one. The sales person informed us they are a pet friendly store and they encourage customers to bring their pets. Bass Pro Shop, there is never a time we go there when we do not see at least two or more dogs shopping with their families. Even at Christmas time, they allowed your pet to be in the family photos with Santa. Our local Home Depot, it seems on Saturdays is pet day because there are pets everywhere from Daschunds to Great Danes. Not all stores allow your pets unless they are a service dog, of course so if you are in doubt it is best to leave your pet at home or call ahead to see if they are a pet friendly store.
If you do take you pet to a pet friendly store remember to be mindful of your pet, make sure they are trained to be courteous, listen, and are properly leashed. General obedience training such as sit, stay, keep them beside you, do not let them wonder, no barking, no attacking other dogs or people, and generally a well-behaved dog. Dogs that are distracting or destructive will be requested to leave, could cause the store to change their policy, as well as the owner will be held responsible for any damages.
It is not just your dog either be mindful of the other dogs because your dog may be on their best behavior but another dog may not be. So be prepared just in case another dog causes an altercation. One need to be mindful of children who may approach your dog, most children are taught to ask before petting as well as let the dog sniff their hand before petting. However, there will always be that one child who will just pet your without your permission nor without allowing the dog to sniff them causing your dog to react. Again, the owner of the dog will be held responsible for any damages.
Before entering the store, please make sure your pet has a potty break whether they need to or do not need to go take the extra few minutes to help prevent accidents in the store. However, accidents do happy so if possible make sure you have bags and tissues to help clean up your pet’s mess. It should not be up to the store to provide clean-up for your pet.
So when in doubt leave your pet at home for their safety even though it is nice that these stores are allowing you to bring your pet, if you have too much to get or too much going on, it is best to leave them home for their safety. If you are going to socialize, browse, or just to get out then it will be a nice time for you and your pet to socialize. Just be careful and mindful of your surroundings. Enjoy Shopping!!
From internet research here are some stores who are pet friendly: Bass Pro Shops, Academy Sports, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Pottery Barn, Hallmark, Half-Price Books, Gander Mountain, Abercrombie and Fitch, Ross, Sephora, Ann Taylor/Ann Taylor Loft, Tiffany & Co., Bath and Body Works, Macy’s, Lush Cosmetics, Barnes and Noble, Urban Outfitters, Bloomingdale’s, Anthropologie, Gap, Old Navy, Foot Locker, Nordstrom, Bebe, Tractor Supply Co, and The Apple Store. (http://barkpost.com/dog-friendly-stores/)