My Dog is Like American Express, I Don’t Leave Home Without Him!

I chuckled when I heard the above response about American Express when I asked my cousin about his adorable Golden Retriever, Chloe. It was funny because it’s also so true in my life with Sanchez. He goes almost everywhere with me, much more so than I’ve done with any dog in the past. I’m not sure if it’s because so many public places near me are dog-friendly, or because he grew up as a Guide Dogs for the Blind puppy in training and he was bred and raised to be calm in social settings. In his Guide Dog puppy training days, he even went to indoor restaurants and San Francisco Symphony concerts.

Honestly, it’s pretty rare that he’s left at home alone. Sanchez prefers an active social life of going to work with me and greeting students at my music school, going on errands with me (I think half of the town knows him by now), and just riding in the car to go anywhere. A variety of local venues (in Half Moon Bay, CA) have treats for him – my bank, the UPS store, and the local hardware store. I’ve been taking classes at my Apple Store lately and dogs are invited into all Apple Stores. If I had known that sooner, I probably would have bought a Mac years ago. (Not to mention how much I love the computer and the service.)

When I posted this on Facebook recently, an entire conversation started regarding what big chain stores in local communities welcome their well-behaved dogs on leash. The list included Home Depot, Nordstrom’s, Macy’s, Lowe’s, Walgreens, The UPS Store, and Crate & Barrel. Also mentioned were many locally owned stores in many dog friendly towns such as Carmel, CA and Myrtle Beach, SC.

When I asked Nordstrom’s on Twitter what their dog policy is, they tweeted this: “We don’t have a dog policy for our stores. Service dogs are always welcome. For pet dogs, we try to use our best judgment.”

It may be different in every community, but I love it that more stores are welcoming friendly, well-behaved dogs on leash. Are there any stores in your community that you’d like to share? Please click comment below and let others know. Also, please share your stories of your experiences bringing your dogs into stores.

By Lisa Spector, Canine Music Expert, Juilliard Graduate, and co-creator of Through a Dog’s Ear. Click here to receive a free download from our latest release, Music to Calm your Canine Companion Vol. 3. Simply enter your email address and a link to the free download will be delivered to your inbox.


Alex K.
Alex K.1 years ago

Americans are so screwed up. Bringing your dog everywhere? Really? How filthy! And how selfish and disrespectful! Typical Americans. Assuming everyone wants your disgusting drooling dog barking and crapping and biting and sniffing and jumping all over us. Keep your nasty filthy dog at home! Dogs are so gross. All you lame dog lovers (get a real hobby by the way) who are reading this thinking 'how dare she! My dog is so clean!' Well it isn't. It is filthy. It runs around in the dirt and sniffs other dogs butts and craps outside and You don't even bathe it. The most diligent dog owner I've ever met washed their dog once a week. How gross is that! You shower every day and your dog gets washed whenever, yet you feel it's ok to bring your nasty smelly hairy flea bag into public restaurants and stores where dogs don't belong? Get some real friends. A dog does not enjoy going to a store. If you decide to purchase a dog, you need to walk it in the park like the rest of the world. A dog would rather walk in a park than a store. And I would rather that too. Get your filthy mutt outta public places! Oh yeah and give it a bath !!! Gross filthy nasty entitled dog owners. Not everyone wants to play with your flea bag

Barbara Sanders
Barbara Sanders4 years ago

Just got back from a 2 week car trip with my pomeranian.She(and I) had the time of her life.We had no problem finding pet-friendly motels,

Darla G.
Darla G.4 years ago

I didn't know Walgreens or Home Depot allowed dogs. Hmmm....maybe I'll check out the local stores, especially Walgreens, as I go there a lot. I would take my dog everywhere if I could but there are way too many places that aren't dog friendly. :(

Bob S.
Bob S.5 years ago

I take My dog wherever I can always on a lease. I enjoy his company more than I do most people. If I get invited to a friends house and he's not welcome then I don't go. He's well behaved and friendly and I enjoy him being with Me.

John S.
Past Member 5 years ago

Sadly, GSD's are not accepted everywhere.

ANA MARIJA R.5 years ago

I take my dog with me everywhere I can...:))

Howard C.
.5 years ago

I guess that I was following the tangent that you gad taken the thread Diane. Having said that surely the answer to your question is apparent, if somewhat implicit, I take my dog with me because like Toussenel "The more one gets to know of men the more one values dogs". One might consider that commenting on the type of people that April associates with was, on the other hand, somewhat less than pertinent. April has her view and, just like the rest of us, has the right to express it.

Diane L.
Diane L.5 years ago

And, Howard, your point is WHAT? The discussion is about taking dogs everywhere with you "because".

Howard C.
.5 years ago

I love dogs and my little darling (at 22 kg he isn't actually that small) comes almost everywhere with us. I am mindful of his doggie habits and respect these, I guess that in this respect I agree with Diane but ...... although I hope that most of my friends wash their hands after they've been to the loo, I've seen many humans who didn't; I don't believe that I have friends who inject drugs (with dirty needles) but I know that there are people who do; I don't think that I have friends who rape and kill others but I know there are people who do; I don't know people (I certainly don't have friends) who torture others of their kind (and other species) just for fun but I know there are those who do. I could go on but I can sum this up by saying that I have never known a dog (or any other animal) who did these things. In conclusion I would say that there are worse things that humans do than dogs could even conceive of so, in summary, I'm sorry Diane, I understand where you're coming from but dogs start behaving as badly as humans do (this includes deliberately spreading HIV, and btw humans can spread rabies as well) I cannot agree with what you have said 100%. Incidentally, try fostering toddlers who have suffered at the hands of their human parents (I have helped many), this could be a real eye opener for you regarding what human beings can be like.

Diane L.
Diane L.5 years ago

April, if you have dogs cleaner than the humans you associate with, you associate with some fairly unclean humans. I've yet to see a toddler who licks his/her own butt and then licks a person. Dogs walk all over in DIRT, then walk in the house and lick their paws as well, then lick people.

I'm as much, if not MORE of a dog lover than most, but I'm also realistic. After handling my dogs, I wash my hands. As for when was the last time a human got sick from a dog? It happens all the time. Dogs carry fleas which bite people as well, and that can result in disease. Dogs can pass worms to humans (not often, but to kids who play around them in the dirt, it has happened). Dogs carry diseases such as lyme disease, which can also be passed to humans, and let's see, rabies can also be mentioned, as some dogs are not kept UTD with their vaccinations. There are MANY diseases which can be passed to humans, so don't kid yourself.