Dogs Where There Shouldn't Be Dogs Avatar

A three-fer, or really, a four-fer at

Lowes, West Hills, California, February 2014

(Yeah, I need to be better about posting these quicker.)

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Two unrelated customers with their dogs in the garden section, with the girl leaning in for a basket and dragging her poor pooch along.

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A lovely couple heads toward the lighting section, while Fifi hopes, “Maybe they’ll pick up a new doggie door for me - and ask a Lowe’s representative about expert installation!”

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And here’s a fellow and his doggie in the lumber section, shot waaay at the other end of the aisle: Sadly, my zoom function only zooms so much. But even at that distance, it was clear that guy wasn’t happy about having his picture taken.

While Lowe’s does sell food, it’s mostly limited to candy bars at the registers. They’ve got concrete floors - there’s no carpet for dogs to pee (or worse!) on.  So am I being a nit-picking hard-ass for including a home improvement store as a place I’m seeing Dogs Where There Shouldn’t Be Dogs?

Lowe’s themselves seems reluctant to take a stand on the issue, judging by this sign:

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Noting that “Service Animals Permitted” seems a bit pointless. How many retail businesses are there where service animals aren’t permitted? 

Most similar signage you’ll see on stores’ doors will note that only service animals are permitted. Looks like Lowe’s felt they had to include something about service animals on their doors, but didn’t want to go any further for fear of scaring away customers who can’t bear to tear themselves away from Tuffie long enough to run out and buy a can of interior high-gloss stain-resistant Arctic Mist enamel.

CVS, West Hills, California, February 2014

Here’s a shot from a few months ago I forgot to post - a woman loaded her pet into a shopping cart and then headed into the local CVS drugstore to pick up a few things.

At least she had the courtesy to put the Rover’s bed at the bottom of the cart - though you can bet it was more for the dog’s comfort than anything else.

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Starbucks, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 2014

Can’t remember whether Bowser wants the Triple Venti Upside-Down Caramel Macchiato Nonfat EZ Whip Kids Temp or the Grande Quad One-Pump No-Whip Skinny Soy Decaf Hazelnut Chai Tea Latte? If you’re at Starbucks at 254 South 15th Street (at 15th & Lattimer) in Philadelphia, it’s no problem - you can apparently bring him in and let him order himself.

Thanks very much to a valued reader for this submission.

There’s plenty more Dogs-In-Starbucks fun to be found around the internet:

A community newsblog, CLAYCORD.com, reported last year about a Clayton, California Starbucks employee who dealt with a customer with a dog differently by showing them the door. The comments below the story make me think maybe I should move to Clayton.

Chris, a blogger from Naples, FL, was surprised a couple of years ago seeing a barely-under-control German Shepherd in his local Starbucks.

Going way back to 2007, the blog “Starbucks Gossip” posted that “It was nice to see a Starbucks employee ‘just say no' to a woman and her dog.”

And, oh my, here’s ILoveDogFriendly.com with a post about “The Top 9 Dog-Friendly Chain Restaurants.”  #2 is Starbucks where “it makes sense that the king of coffee would welcome your four-legged king of the house at any one of its locations across America.” The writer makes a point to note your dog will enjoy being on the patio with you at each of these chains, but a-ha!, not every Starbucks has a patio. Apparently that’s the loophole these dog owners are exploiting.

Walmart, West Hills, California, June 2014

Over a year ago I saw a couple pushing their embarrassed-looking pet in a stroller in my local Walmart, but I didn’t have the nerve to snap a picture. Yet it did inspire me to start this website. The fates brought us together again, and this time I didn’t hesitate.

All over the news the past few days is the story of a plane that had to make an emergency landing because a passenger’s dog did his business not once but twice on the floor of the aisle - with the resulting stink forcing the plane down to an emergency landing so the situations could be adequately dealt with. The dog owner offered to send Starbucks cards for those inconvenienced by the incident.

Dog Poop on Plane Prompts Emergency Landing

One of the passengers, Chris Law, who Tweeted the entire event, seemed to doubt the “service animal” qualifications of the offending Fido:

Hear, hear!

Another person who commented below one of the stories via Facebook claimed to have been on the plane and writes:

Hey folks - I was on that plane, and to call this a ‘service dog’ is misleading. It was an emotional support dog, meaning the owner ‘needed’ it to feel secure. This is very different than a service dog who is trained to perform work or provide a vital function. No special training is required for emotional support animals. I don’t mean to be insensitive, but at what point does the owner’s emotional needs trump the needs of 100+ people who missed connecting flights, business meetings, etc? What about the thousands of $$ in fuel the airline spent to divert the flight? At what point does the owner’s emotional needs become more important than the kid with alergies who has to suffer for 6 hours while sitting next to a dog and not being able to do anything about it? I’m all for true ‘service dogs’, but there has to be a balance.

Hear, hear, hear!

While I sympathize with those whose travel plans were delayed and/or thoroughly screwed up because of this incident, I really feel sorry for the dog which must have been under enormous stress to have let loose two bouts of diarrhea under those conditions.

I’m presuming (perhaps dangerously) that this was another pet masquerading as a phony, internet-registered, service animal. If that’s the case, shame on the owner for putting her fellow passengers through the inconvenience and for subjecting her dog to such a hellish ordeal.

If I’m wrong, I’ll buy her a Starbucks cards to make up for what I just wrote.

99¢ Only Store, Woodland Hills, May 2014
This beautiful, blue-eyed dog, on a leash held by a young girl, approached me all friendly-like with tail-a-waggin’ as I snapped his (or her) picture - as if to say, “Look, we all know I’m not supposed to be in here, but with great deals on Pedigree dog food, who can stay away?”
A blog post on 99¢ Only’s site encourages dog owners to look for pet-friendly places to visit with their canine pal, such as “hotels, beaches, attractions, restaurants, dog parks, off-leash parks, beach parks for dogs, public transportation, emergency vets [Gee, I hope so], national parks and more." Despite the tacit approval of pets in many of their locations, their own stores curiously didn’t make the suggested list.
Interestingly, it’s titled, “Get Out With Your Pooch!,” something it seems a 99¢ Only store employee has probably never said to anyone bringing their pet inside.

99¢ Only Store, Woodland Hills, May 2014

This beautiful, blue-eyed dog, on a leash held by a young girl, approached me all friendly-like with tail-a-waggin’ as I snapped his (or her) picture - as if to say, “Look, we all know I’m not supposed to be in here, but with great deals on Pedigree dog food, who can stay away?”

A blog post on 99¢ Only’s site encourages dog owners to look for pet-friendly places to visit with their canine pal, such as “hotels, beaches, attractions, restaurants, dog parks, off-leash parks, beach parks for dogs, public transportation, emergency vets [Gee, I hope so], national parks and more." Despite the tacit approval of pets in many of their locations, their own stores curiously didn’t make the suggested list.

Interestingly, it’s titled, “Get Out With Your Pooch!,” something it seems a 99¢ Only store employee has probably never said to anyone bringing their pet inside.

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Fox 17, West Michigan gives us the story of a would-be renter who was denied consideration for an apartment because of her “emotional support animal” - a pit bull. Oh, pardon, “American Staffordshire Terrier.”

Somehow the barely articulate woman fought the day-to-day anxiety and depression from which she evidently suffers to pick up the phone and call the “Fox 17 Problem Solvers,” who - yes! - solved her problem, and gave a despicable, register-whatever-you-want-we-don’t-care, for-profit, not-legally-recognized service animal registry website some free publicity.  

Hell, after that, let’s give ‘em a little more free publicity, so there’s no question who we’re talking about:

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Considering what a disservice this awful (and overlong!) piece of “journalism” does for their viewers and for those who have actual service animals, maybe they should be called the “Fox 17 Problem Causers.” 

Unknown casino, April 2014
Pit bosses supervise the blackjack tables, and apparently pit bulls run the bingo hall, as seen in this photo submitted anonymously. “We couldn’t believe this woman brought her pet with her,” read the corresponding email. “A lot of the old ladies were pretty freaked out.”  No word on whether “Bingo” was the dog’s name-o. Hopefully not, or chaos might have ensued.

Unknown casino, April 2014

Pit bosses supervise the blackjack tables, and apparently pit bulls run the bingo hall, as seen in this photo submitted anonymously. “We couldn’t believe this woman brought her pet with her,” read the corresponding email. “A lot of the old ladies were pretty freaked out.”  No word on whether “Bingo” was the dog’s name-o. Hopefully not, or chaos might have ensued.

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Question: When is reading anything on Gawker not more annoying than seeing someone bring their non-service animal into a store or restaurant?

Answer: When they’re using their voice for good, in this case advising readers correctly on this very issue. Check out Monday’s “Thatz Not Okay" column. (They’ve misspelled "That’s" with a ‘z’ and without an apostrophe because it affects a casual, bored approach to bad retro spelling or something involving the word "meta," or something, who the hell knows?)

99¢ Only Store (Where else?), Woodland Hills (Where else?), March 2014Oh my, the glare I got snapping this photo - from the window and the dog owner. But she needn’t worry - neither her nor the other shoppers are identifiable. Evidently, I respect privacy more than many respect “no pets” policies.

99¢ Only Store (Where else?), Woodland Hills (Where else?), March 2014
Oh my, the glare I got snapping this photo - from the window and the dog owner. But she needn’t worry - neither her nor the other shoppers are identifiable. Evidently, I respect privacy more than many respect “no pets” policies.