Holiday Shopping for People Who Don’t Want to Leave Their Dogs at Home

My dogs are practically professional shoppers. It’s actually rare you’ll find me somewhere without one of them. Sanchez and Gina are ‘career change’ dogs from Guide Dogs for the Blind. Early socialization as pups were a big part of their training, and they were bred to work, and to love working. They are like American Express –I don’t leave home without them.

That being said, I never thought of bringing them into stores that sell clothing, apparel, and breakables. That is until recently, when I found out that Nordstrom and Nieman Marcus are dog-friendly. I tweeted to both recently and Nordstrom replied:

“Your four legged friends are always welcome. The only exception we do have is that they are not in the dining areas of the store, such as the cafe, bistro, etc.”


Image credit: deedsfam via Flickr

Other national chains where you can bring well-mannered dogs on leash are:

  • Apple
  • Macy’s (varies by location)
  • Home Depot (varies by location)
  • Lowe’s
  • Walgreens
  • Crate & Barrel (with all the beautiful fragile items in Crate & Barrel, you’ll probably want to monitor Fido’s tail wagging – and stick to the clear aisles)
  • Nordstrom
  • Nieman Marcus
  • Most pet stores

While all these stores are dog-friendly, it doesn’t mean that all dogs should go shopping.


Image credit: jeepersmedia via Flickr

How do you know your dog is fit for shopping?

  • He behaves calmly around strangers.
  • He is well socialized.
  • He doesn’t pull on a leash.
  • He is happy being near your side and doesn’t care about engaging with the other dogs who may also be shopping.
  • He is quiet in all environments.
  • He is tolerant when people approach him and pet him on his head.
  • He doesn’t relieve inside.
  • He can calmly manage a stimulating sound environment.

My dogs are also well known at my local UPS Store and my bank, and are greeted by name with a treat. And if you visit Carmel, CA, you will find that most stores and art galleries are dog friendly.

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.

7 Things People Do that Dogs Hate
A Dog’s Plea: “Don’t Pat My Head if You Don’t Know Me”

Main image credit: stevendepolo via Flickr 

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Melania Padilla
Melania P3 years ago

I shared

Jennifer H.
Jennifer H4 years ago

The names on this list are certainly a surprise. Thanks for sharing.

Barbara P.
Barbara P4 years ago

I live in a very non-dog friendly city. Most rental places don't even allow them, let alone businesses. My dog is allowed in all pet stores though, but not much else. My local library location actually let her in and had treats....that was a real surprise and pleasure.
I read about Carmel, California and thought I should probably move there. :)

Graziella Veri
Graziella Veri4 years ago


Carla Thames
Carla T4 years ago

Please don't forget that there are other people who shop that have pet phobias (esp of dogs). My little boy is one of them. And some people also have pet allergies.

Roslyn McBride
Roslyn M4 years ago

Great stores!

Angela P.
Angie P4 years ago

My dog loves Lowes and Home Depot. The people at the store love when he comes in.

Carole H.
C H4 years ago

When I SEE dogs tied up outside a store I always feel sorry that this is happening and always thought a doggie creche would be a good idea for dogs that can't stay home.

Julia Cabrera-Woscek

I tell you, my dog can care less about its surroundings as long as she is smelling something she is fine.