As our Canine Good Citizen Test closes in, Bernie and I decided to train at a location entirely new to him.
Thankfully, Bookmans Entertainment Exchange is a dog-friendly local store with late hours. They're open daily until 10pm. We spent about an hour practicing loose-leash walking and walking through a crowd one evening.
The tempting musty book sniffs...
When we first entered Bookmans a small crowd of people were on their way out. Rather than trying to rush his training and awkwardly insert ourselves into this crowd, we started by walking up and down some of the unoccupied aisles. The book smells were enough of a temptation for Bernie!
I was calling his name repeatedly to make sure he kept his attention on me and where we were going. When we warm up with easier tasks like this, especially in a location with all new smells, I find Bernie is much more successful.
Our Sierra Club pup found the Nature section...
Once we were ready, we started looking for people to walk by. We strolled by all the magazines and found the Nature section. When Bernie saw all of the flora and fauna books, he asked if we could spend a little bit of time reading here.
InDognito: A Book of Canines in Costumes intrigued Bernie. As a pup who does not care to wear a harness, he had a hard time believing that any dog would want to dress up. We had a nice chat about how some dogs enjoy being stylish. While Bernie can better appreciate costume choices, he remains adamant that wearing clothes is not his thing.
Where to next?
After mingling with a person here or there in the nonfiction aisles, we heard some laughing on the other side of the store.
We decided to walk by the classic board games, ignoring their 70s-80s vintage ambience, to see if we could find a crowd of three or more people.
People like video games and music....
There were definitely more customers browsing the music selections and video games. We snaked through the aisles around this area a few times.
On our first pass by the group of three kids, I kept Bernie on my right. The kids didn't seem bothered or scared by Bernie, so I switched him to my left side to test if he would try to sniff the kids or keep his attention on me.
Bernie showed a little interest in the kids, but remain engaged with me. Yay! Walking through a crowd without jumping on people or excessive sniffing is possible.
How about a story?
When I saw Bernie sitting so politely next to this adorable "Read To Me" panda t-shirt, I thought he may have changed his mind about wearing clothes. Nope. Bernie just wanted a little story time.
Bernie curls up with a good book...
We found the young pups section and Bernie picked out Bathtime for Biscuit. Bathing is not Bernie's favorite activity, so he was curious how other pups viewed the practice.
Bernie connected with Biscuit and Puddles wanting to play in the mud, but felt they made the right decision to eventually get their bath. After all, muddy puppies don't get to sleep on comfy beds.
Bernie was a little embarrassed when I gave him some special snuggles for being such a good boy on our first trip to Bookmans.
He sat politely whenever I stopped, whether mid-aisle or at the end of an aisle. While he did sniff some of the books and was interested in some of the people, he never jumped on anyone and demonstrated good citizen behavior.
We're looking forward to visiting the other two Bookmans Entertainment Exchange locations in Tucson to keep practicing our loose-leash walking and walking through a crowd skills.