Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

You will never believe what I saw in the grocery store today December 2, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:56 PM
Tags: , , , , , , ,

SO…I’M STROLLING down the produce aisle at HyVee in Faribault this afternoon, romaine lettuce dropped in my shopping cart, aiming for the tofu, when I spot the dogs. Two smallish white dogs nestled on a plaid bed inside a white-haired woman’s shopping cart.

I may have stood there for a moment with my mouth agape. I wanted to say something like, β€œLady, what are you doing with your dogs in a grocery store?”

But, to be honest, I was so stunned that I weaved around her and continued on my way, all the while wondering why anyone, except those who have service dogs, would think it alright to bring these obviously pampered pets into a grocery store.

I saw dogs similar to this one (except white fur) in the grocery store today. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

I saw dogs similar to this one, except with white fur, in the grocery store today. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

Is this even legal in Minnesota? I would think not for a variety of reasons, the first being health concerns.

I would not want to be the next customer placing my food in that cart.

I suppose, in hindsight, I should have tracked down a manager and registered my concern.

But I didn’t.

Am I wrong? Is it OK to bring a non-service dog into a grocery store?

I once saw a woman shopping in a women’s clothing store with a dog tucked in the crook of her arm. I was appalled then. But this, this grocery store sighting tops even that.

Β© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


25 Responses to “You will never believe what I saw in the grocery store today”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    It does not surprise me in the least! Not at all. It seems our pets are very much a part of our lives and while “I” would not dream of doing that I am sure it did not even cross that woman’s mind that it was inappropriate. A lot of restaurants –especially in the south—offer doggie dining al fresco. That is fine with me because it is OUTSIDE and the animals are nowhere near the food preparation area. Shopping cars = no no! πŸ™‚

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I was just so surprised to see this…ummm, these, dogs in the produce aisle. I am having a difficult time imagining anyone would think this OK, but, well, who knows what she was thinking or not thinking?

  2. artsynina Says:

    Those dogs were probably cleaner and better cared for that some of the kids I see at Walmart πŸ˜‰ But really, I think that she should have left them at home.

  3. BradG Says:

    I have a small dog too…but would not take it into a grocery store. I have even seen a pet in the grocery cart (buggy in this part of the states)…and the owner feeding it as they passed snacks and fruit. Totally rude. I think store owners can get in trouble if they don’t take action. I used to ignore, but as I get older am not afraid to take a stand and say something. Uff-Dah!

  4. I am a pet lover, but can’t imagine. Some people don’t think the rules of common sense apply to them.

  5. treadlemusic Says:

    That situation is so against health department code it’s amazing! I’m not sure if she has been taking the “kids” (as some feel their 4-legged friends are) everywhere and gave no thought to it or it was a case of they can’t be left in a vehicle alone or what! I think I would have sought out the manager to inquire as to his knowledge of the situation and left it there. Certainly curious, though.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I’m pretty certain someone on the store staff had to have seen these dogs as typically there are employees wandering the aisles while working.

      Yes, I suppose I should have “found” someone and inquired, but there are days when you just don’t feel like taking that next step and this afternoon was one of those for me.

  6. Lanae Says:

    I’m a big animal lover. Many of you have seen my “boy” on this blog—My fat cat—We would never take a cat or dog into a grocery store or resturant. Many people do not see other peoples pets as a family member so leave your pet kids at home.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I love your fat cat, Sable. But you’re right. He, and other pets, don’t belong in places like grocery stores or restaurants (at least indoor restaurants).

  7. Clyde of Mankato Says:

    This is a topic on which I am much out-of-touch with current culture. I will state my opinion. Please, if you disagree. do not assume I am a terrible person for my point-of-view. I have been treated very harshly for some of my statements on this topic, by people with whom I seldom disagree.
    There are several places dogs go today to which I object and the list is growing. There has been legislation proposed in MN to allow them in more places, such as restaurants. Europeans I am told take their dogs into restaurants and everywhere. A European friend of mine was indignant to learn his dog was not allowed in restaurants here. I believe some states now allow it within some restrictions. I have eaten in a restaurant in CA with a dog under my feet. But, as several stated above, dogs today are often very clean; nor do we really ever seem to get diseases from dogs, as near as I can tell. And, yes, I have often seen a child with his/her diaper right on top of the wire of the basket. I think we are much likelier to get disease from that. BUT, I also object to the “full rights of dogs,” as a woman called it to me in great hostility when her dog deposited on my lawn and she led the dog away, before I told her to retrieve it.
    I am a bike rider. I have twice been put in the hospital and had two other bad falls, all four times from dogs. The Sakatah Trail between Audrey and me is now one long leash-less or 30-ft leash dog walking trail. Owners often think that if their dog is being friendly somehow it is alright if it jumps up on you on your bike. Dogs have every right to be there on leashes controlled by their owners.
    Next, how many dog owners have had their dog nip or bite and then say, “He/she’s never done that before.” Dogs are driven by other triggers than humans, as is their due. We assume too much human behavior from dogs. Last, I have fibromyalgia and have a long list of odor and chemical triggers. Some of my FM friends are triggered by cats and dogs. I am not. BUT many dogs are so clean they carry chemicals and odors, dog perfume is available, that trigger me. I do not ask people to adjust to my problem, but I think the number of people who do react is high enough to make it a factor on laws and politeness.
    I do like dogs, wish I could have one now.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      First, I am not a dog (or pet) owner, but grew up with dogs and cats on the farm. They were more “workers,” keeping cattle in check/guarding the farm and killing mice, rather than pets.

      That said, I must say, Clyde, that I agree with what you’ve written here. All too often I’ve seen dogs running lose and depositing on my property. Once a woman even placed her dog in the middle of one of my flower beds to take a photo because she liked my flowers so much. Alright then. If you like my flowers, do not allow your dog to squash them. Big dogs running lose in my yard have frightened me and my family (think dogs that are known for their aggressive behavior). I have never bought into the mentality that “my dog is friendly/won’t bite.” I never fully, totally, trust a dog. Never.

      I’ve watched dogs run loose and defecate on my yard. I’ve had dogs keep me awake at night with their barking. I could go on and on. I’m in total agreement that dog and other pet owners need to keep their animals on leashes, and under control, in public, per most city and other regulations, and respect the rights of others.

      Clyde, I’m so sorry you experienced, and continue to experience, those incidents with dogs which should have never happened had the dogs been controlled as they should be. Perhaps a bit of patrolling along the recreational trail b/n Faribault and Mankato is in order. I had never thought of the health impact. Thank you for specifically detailing that.

      I appreciate that you took the time to express your concerns here.

      Agree or disagree, readers, Clyde has offered much content for thought.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I failed to mention the other two dog encounters involving my family. My eldest daughter was bitten by a leashed dog while walking along a south Minneapolis sidewalk. The dog was tied in the owner’s yard, but the leash was long enough to allow the dog to reach the sidewalk. The owner showed no care for my daughter, made no apology for her dog’s attack. Later, when animal control showed up, she was irate.

      Second, my son was thrown over the handle bars of his new bike (first time out) when he hit the brakes to avoid hitting a dog lying in the middle of a recreational trail in Faribault. The owners were visiting, seemingly unaware that others were using the trail and their dog was in the way. The boy came home with a badly skinned arm and, thankfully, nothing more serious.

  8. Jackie Says:

    I”m totally with you Audrey…period!

  9. phil Says:

    I guess i fail to see what the problem is. sick kids seem to be more of a threat to my health than a dog. i am in contact with my dogs all the time, bring a sick kid over and somebody in the house is likely to get sick.

    I’m not advocating we let dogs go everywhere, i just fail to see what the health issue is here.

    Last time we were in Grand Marais and had brought our small poodle we were happy to learn most of the stores there were fine with us bringing her in as long as i carried her.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I totally agree with you on sick kids making others sick. And you really do have to wonder how often those grocery carts are disinfected. Some stores do have wet wipes available to wipe the handles and that is good.

      Thanks for sharing your opinion on dogs in stores, even though we will have to choose to respectfully disagree.

  10. Hmmm…yeah, odd. Not a place for dogs. Ridiculous…

  11. For me I do not prefer dogs to be inside grocery stores or restaurants – just a little concerned when it comes to health and sanitation. I kid you not – was in a wine tasting room and a person brought in a small dog and the dog peed on the end of the tasting bar – ewww!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      That is bad, really bad, and is one case example why I have concerns about dogs inside public places like this, especially those that sell food.

      What happened in this situation of the dog peeing on the tasting bar? Was the dog owner asked to leave? How did the dog owner respond? How did others in the tasting bar react?

      • We were on a wine tour, so they decided to stop our tasting and take us on a tour. The person cleaned up the mess and was not asked to leave. I was glad we were at the other end of the tasting bar. It is just not the place and even if it is have some manners.

Leave a Reply to Clyde of Mankato Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.