Tulip the service dog

I’m not sure why I noticed the red SUV that backed into the parking spot outside my store, perhaps it was the fact that it backed in. The hatch slowly opened as the passengers exited the front, from the rear emerged a rather large brown and black spotted Great Dane. Isn’t that cute, I thought. A few minutes later a woman holding the leash of this cute and very large Great Dane was standing in the door way asking if they could come in. “Of course,” I said with a smile.

Tulip and her owner entered the store. About 5 steps in, the owner dropped the leash and Tulip was free to roam. Tulip wore a purple service dog vest, she never stood still long enough to be able to read all the wording but I did make out the words ‘in training’.

Tulip appointed herself the welcoming committee and greeted customers at the door. A woman stood with her hands in the air as she backed into the store, Tulip being almost 2/3 her height. After selecting a few items, Tulip and her master made her way to the fitting room. At one point I noticed Tulip bounding back into the fitting rooms, not sure what she was investigating, but t must have been important enough to leave her master.

At the end of this shopping experience, Tulip decided to assist with checking out. First being a bit unnerved by the flashing lights from the router and other computer gadgets hidden behind the counter and then peering up over the counter as if ready to help the next person in line. She tired quickly of the service end of retail and made her way back to the other side and promptly laid down, taking up the entire length of out counter.

After a short rest as she waited for her owner to make her purchases, her owner reached out to take Tulips leach, no bending was required. “What a great dog,” another customer said. “She’s a shopping hound,” replied her owner. Tulip swayed out the store ready and willing to serve the next store.

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