Alice’s wonderful Publix visit 2

Today is the first time Alice has walked on the floor of a grocery store! She’s been to a couple of grocery stores before, but always pouched. She is usually a little tense in the produce and freezer sections, but more relaxed in the regular aisles.

Today we did a quick training outing to our local Publix. I pouched her at first to enter the store and walk through the produce section. She wasn’t as tense this time in produce as she has been in the past.

I took her to an empty aisle, and took her out of the pouch. She was happy and ready to work! We walked down the aisle and she kept looking at me to get treats really frequently, which I love. I really want to develop that eye contact as a default behavior.

Alice, a sable and white Japanese Chin wearing a purple vest, stands in a grocery store aisle.

She did so well walking down the first aisle that we ended up doing three more aisles! I got a picture of her in one aisle, and a quick 8-second video of her heeling in another. It was hard to train and get pics and video, so that’s why they are so limited. I only did 8 seconds of heeling because that’s the maximum time I wanted to go without giving her a treat, and I couldn’t figure out how to treat while holding a leash in one hand and the camera in the other.

While we were going around an end cap to go down the third aisle, an employee in the meat department behind the counter started screaming “Baby, baby, baby!” over and over again really excitedly. Alice paused and looked around like she was trying to find what was so interesting. I let her stand there and take it in, and followed her lead. After about 20 seconds of looking around, she was ready to move on again and continue walking down aisles. I was really proud of her!

My original plan was to pouch her again and walk through the frozen section and then leave. But she was doing so well and hadn’t seemed very tense in produce, so I decided I’d try walking her through produce to the exit.

She did so well! She was definitely a little more uncomfortable and was walking with her head down a little further and not looking up at me as often. And she didn’t want to get too close to the refrigerated areas of the produce section. But I figured it was great for her first time. She walked through the section without hesitation in a wonderful heel, and out the doors.

She had a slight hiccup going out the second sliding door because I stepped on the metal plate at the bottom of the door and it made a really loud rattle. So we stood there for about 10 seconds investigating the door and then she was ready to move on.

I am so proud of Alice! This was an excellent first time walking in a grocery store!

I also got two selfies when we were done in Publix of us outside the store (I removed my mask for the pictures). In them, I have long brown wavy hair in a side ponytail.

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