The Therapy Dog That Shunned Me

When you go to the grocery store, you pretty get all walks of life. I mean, there aren’t some humans that eat and some that don’t (except Angelina Jolie). We all have to eat thus we need to go grocery shopping.

Yesterday was no different, I began on the right of the dry goods and began to work my way up the first 2 aisles. Since I’m feeding a small orphanage, I hit all aisles except the pet aisle though to save money, I’ve debated on whether or not to try out dog food in my recipes. About the “Latin Food” section, I came across an older woman with an adorable little doggy. The doggy had a cute little pink bow in its hair and sat so still and good for the lady. Initially I didn’t question why she had a lap dog in the seat normally reserved for a child. Then it struck me, this was  a therapy dog.

‘Did she stress out going into the freezer section to get her meals?’ I thought.

I tried to resist the urge to pet the dog. But every time I went down a new aisle, her and Princess Cutie-Pie (this is what I’ve named her secretly) would walk past me.

Finally by the cereal aisle, I couldn’t take it anymore.

“Mam?” I stopped and asked, “may I please pet your puppy?”

This ask is just a formality in my mind as I always ask to show respect. It’s kind of like asking a pregnant woman to feel her belly before just putting your hand down without the request. Obviously, if the dog has the potential to bite, I know my request may be turned down and for my own safety, I’m ok with that. But this little nugget of cuteness was harmless and besides, she was a therapy dog, right?

Do you know what that woman said?

“No. She’s just broken in. Thank you.” And she walked on.

‘Was I just shunned…’ I asked myself, ‘by a therapy dog?’

Well Now I’m Pissed

I walked away but it got more and more awkward as we crossed paths. I’m not going to lie, I became more and more pissed. What was this shit about just being broken in? Why can’t I pet your puppy that is supposed to bring comfort? What? You’re worried your stupid dog is going to like me more?

I began to run scenarios through my head. Perhaps I’ll tattle on her. Surely that’s not a therapy dog. In my brain service dogs are golden retrievers with a harness on it’s back. I had visions of that news article with the airline passenger that brought a fuckin’ peacock into the airport. What’s next? Therapy snakes? I was offended she didn’t let me pet her puppy. The puppy wouldn’t have minded. It’s not like I wasn’t going to pinch her dog or something.

I knew I had to get a picture of her and the dog but I was running out of time when I went to check out. I was relieved to have a clerk that I’ve had for probably years now.

“What’s with the lady with a puppy in her basket?” I asked.

“There’s a woman with a dog in her cart?” She asked.

“Yeah,” I said just as I saw her coming my way. “Look, over by the gift cards.”

She turned around.

“Oh yeah. She’s crazy.”

“Obviously. She wouldn’t let me pet her stupid puppy. Now not to be rude but I’m going to take a pic of her.”

I pulled my phone out and took this picture:

Therapy Puppy

So do any of you know about this “breaking in” thing so I’ll understand more as to why I was shunned by a therapy dog? I’ve Googled it and haven’t found anything.


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