When A Trip To PetSmart Makes You Cry

One of the funnest things to do at Halloween when you own a pet, is to dress them up in a funny costume and take them to get their pictures taken.  Never in a million years would you think that this would end up making you cry.  We spent quite a bit of money on two of the cutest Halloween costumes for both Nikita and Bella, as Nikita was going to be transformed into a squirrel, and Bella turned into a little skunk, as sometimes she is a little “stinker”, so we thought her costume was quite appropriate.

So, we kept checking online to see when PetSmart was going to hold their annual Howl-O-Ween event, and it was scheduled for yesterday at the Parma, OH store from 3:00pm to 5:00pm.   We got all of the costumes packed up, and packed up our usual doggie travel bag with lots of water, a water bowl, and treats so that our doggies would not be thirsty, as we care for the welfare of our pets.  To catch you up on what has happened to us in prior years at PetSmart’s Howl-O-Ween event, we had each time blurry photographs that they tried to pass off to us, and we did not want to pay for them, so we got our money back and left the store disappointed and sad with blurry photo in hand.  As we headed off to PetSmart yesterday, we chuckled to ourselves and wondered if we would have the same experience again with the photographs, and boy oh boy you won’t believe what happened to us this year!

We arrived at PetSmart a little before 3:00pm and dressed both Nikita and Bella in the car which was a sight in itself and not the easiest thing to try to accomplish, but we got their costumes on them & headed into the store.  There was already a huge line that had formed and we were surprised, because prior years when we arrived at this same time, we seemed to be one of the first in line, but that’s ok as we were willing to take our turn in line with the others.  Well, we waited in line for about 45 minutes to an hour before we were able to get our photograph taken, and in this time, it was difficult to keep the dogs well behaved because of all the activity around them with other dogs barking (and you know what happens when one dog barks – they ALL bark), the dogs were getting hot in their costumes and uncomfortable and I kept giving them water (which I am sure they had to pee by now) to keep them hydrated.

It was apparent to us (again) that the employees at PetSmart turned out yet another (this is our third year taking the pets up there & our LAST) dis-organized event.  Last year, we waited in line only to find out when we got up to the front of the line, that we had to PAY FIRST for our frame & photo (which no one from the store told anyone this), so we had to head back to the register with the dogs to pay, then get back in line.  This year (yesterday) we got conflicting information from PetSmart employees on what to do, as one told us that we DID NOT have to pay first, and another employee told us that we in fact had to pay first.

We were at PetSmart about a week prior to this event, and actually spoke to one employee in depth about our thoughts on how they could improve this event, and he told us that he was one of the people who was actually going to be working this event, so we were glad that we were talking to one of the right people to pass along our thoughts.  We told this employee, that they (PetSmart) should have an employee stand by the front entrance to greet people coming in with their pets and “DIRECT” them on what to do.  If we had to pay first, then this employee would “INSTRUCT” customers to head to register #4 FIRST to pay for their photo & frame, then to get in line with the others.  None of this happened, and this year was the most unorganized event that PetSmart has held in three years.

So, while we tried to amuse ourselves in line for almost an hour, keep the dogs in line, hold on to what sanity we had left at that point, we made it up to the front of the line and it was our turn to get our picture taken.  We sat down on the bench and had the dogs sit on the floor in front of us, and they took a bunch of photographs.  Since Bella is dark in color, it was hard to see her, but that is why they took lots of pictures so we could pick out one of the best.  The Store Manager was actually the person who took our photographs.  We gathered up our coats and doggie travel bag, then headed around the corner to “WAIT” for our photograph to be printed.  Once again, trying to keep the dogs from going nuts from all of the other dogs walking past them, and keep them well hydrated because they were hot with their costumes on.  After we stood there for quite a while, I decided to remove their costumes and help cool them off, and this worked as they seemed to settle down and laid down on the floor by us.  The lady who was “behind us” in line with her dog Pogo, came around the corner and showed us her doggie photo, so she was off and on her way home now with photo & frame in hand.  We still waited.  Then after more time had passed, we started asking as to when we would get our photo printed.  The two PetSmart employees that were printing the photos looked through multiple memory sticks on their printers and could not find our photographs.  What?  What do you mean you can’t find them?  They took at least five to six photographs of us sitting on the bench!  At this point, I got thoroughly pissed, and walked to the front of the store with Nikita, while Roy stayed back with Bella to see if they could locate our photos on the memory cards.  When I got to the front of the store, I saw Jane who was at the first register and I asked her to get me a Store Manager to talk to.  (Jane did not know at this point what had happened to us)  The lady who took our photographs approached me and apologized to me and at that time I did not know that she was actually the Store Manager, but she handed me a $25 PetSmart gift card with her sincere apologies on our experience in the store.  I was so upset at this point and started to cry, right there in the entrance to PetSmart, as I was so hurt, disgusted, irritated, and let down AGAIN by the experience we have had over the last three years at PetSmart at this event, and this time, it was the worst ever experience and this has truly changed our mind about ever shopping there again.  I told the Store Manager to go back and find Roy and to refund his money that he had paid for the photo & frame, and she did.

This was supposed to be a HAPPY DAY which turned out to be the worst experience we have ever had and now Bella’s first Halloween (and Nikita’s third) was ruined by incompetent employees who deleted all of our photographs off the memory stick.  Why in the hell would you ever “delete” any photo off a memory stick while the event was still going on?

Hopefully the Store Manager and the employees at PetSmart will get their act together for future Howl-O-Ween events, and take some of our advice on how to get the word to customers arriving at the store for photographs and what to do, like pay first or not to pay first, and the funny thing that we overheard while waiting yet another 45 minutes for our printed photo was that lots of people walked out of the store “without paying”.  This over two hour ordeal that we went through at PetSmart was not worth a $25 gift card that we received, as we would have rather just had the two hours of our life back and had not gone through the agonizing perils that we experienced at this store.  Organization is the key to pulling off a simple event like this, and they obviously did not have any of that.

So sorry PetSmart, as you just lost two customers that have spent lots of money in your store over the years.  The only photographs that we will remember from this event, are the photographs of us “standing in line”.

Halloween Prep is in FULL Gear

First and foremost, I want to thank everyone who stops by my blog, whether it be just a casual glance, you stumbled upon it, you searched for something and found me, or you are one of my avid followers, no matter how you got here, I want to thank you.  Thanks for stopping by, reading up on me, watching me grow up and all the funny things that happen in my life. 

When you are visiting, please take the time to leave me a comment, or click the “like” button in the comments section, or even “rate” my blog posts at the top of each article just so I know how I am doing.  I would appreciate it!  If you have your own blog too, by clicking the “like” button in the comments section will get others to view your blog as well and this will help create traffic flow to your blog.

Daddy and Mommy did more Halloween prep this weekend, getting more wood  tombstones painted & ready for the yard, chasing their styrofoam tombstones down the street from the strong winds we had over the weekend (now Daddy can see what Mommy had to put up with during the day on Friday as Mommy had to head outside more than 11 times to reposition the tombstones – grrr), and they also worked on their cemetery columns & sign and they think they finally figured out how to add lights to the sign.  What is amazing about our cemetery columns is that they are made out of all boxes and then spray painted in a gray primer and some Krylon Stone spray paint.  Anyhow, Mommy & Daddy went shopping for the supplies for my Halloween costume and now Mommy has to figure out how to pull it all together.  Can you tell what I am going to be for Halloween by this picture? 

Halloween is fun, as you can act like a kid (or a dog in my case) and you can have fun with all the props.  I find it amusing when Daddy pulls out his stuffed black cat, as this thing drives me nuts.  I am ok with “real” kitties, but this stuffed thing is different.  Mommy kept moving it around the floor like it was chasing me and I barked and growled at it.  It is amazing on how big I have grown in just a years time, as I was just a little pup last Halloween. 


Pet Halloween Costumes – What are you gonna be?

Halloween is not only for kids….and it’s not only about the candy anymore these days.  More and more adults like my Daddy & Mommy get into this witching time of year with cool Halloween props, but what about your pet?  You can’t let Halloween sneak by you without dressing up your pet too!  We want in on the fun too, although most of us really truly hate it when our owners dress us up as we can’t stand wearing those goofy outfits they put on us, but we deal with it.  Perhaps, we can get some extra treats for going through this horrible ordeal of wearing something that makes our parents go “Aw, isn’t she just adorable?”  There’s nothing we can do but just suck it up.  LOL  It shouldn’t be that bad, as Halloween is only one day, thank God, but we’ll deal with all the cutsie outfits to make our Daddy & Mommy happy. 

So, I am having some BIG problems trying to figure out what to be for Halloween and since there is not much time left, I thought that I would ask all of you what I should be for Halloween.  Help me pick out something great!

Are You Ready for Halloween?

Did you know that Halloween is only 60 days away?  Yep, we’re counting it down and getting ready too!  Mommy is getting her creative side in gear and is trying to make a cemetery gateway out of boxes to put in the front yard this year.  Making your own Halloween props is not that hard, but you do need a good imagination to pull it off.   Once Mommy gets a little further in her gateway progress, we’ll will post some photographs so you can see.  When this gateway is finished it will have approximately 40+ boxes, masking tape, bricks for weight, and lights or a black light in the cemetery sign on top.  WOW, that sounds so neat, can’t wait to see it when it’s done.  I have been helping her by trying to chew on the masking tape roll!  (what is it with tape rolls that I love so much?)  Who knows, but I love helping Mommy with her projects! 

Shipping Halloween Products

Getting ready to setup your own home haunt?  Well, by using a few pieces of  grid paper, you can draw out your yard and use it as a plan as to where to place all of your tombstones and props in your yard.  Don’t forget to draw out all of the extension cords and flood lights you will need too, as they are an important part of your home haunt! 

I have been busy helping Mommy shipping out tons of Halloween props and accessories too, but if someone accidentally gets one of my toys in their box by mistake, can you ship it back to me?  (I may be missing one or two)   

This is a MUST do for every pet owner!  Why would you dress up for Halloween and not dress up your pet too?  They want to get in the fun too, not to mention all of the fun photographs you can capture when they’re all decked out in their costumes.  PetSmart usually holds a Halloween Pet Photo weekend where you can purchase your photo for a minimal charge and it’s fun too!  Last year, I was a fairy, but I can’t fit into my tutu any longer (as it only fits around my neck now), so we need to figure out what I am going to be for Halloween.  We’re thinking of making me into a bat with black wings and a black mask, but we’re still deciding on this one.  If you have any suggestions on what I should be, let me know!   

Don’t forget to also check out Daddy & Mommy’s website if you are looking for some awesome Halloween Props & Accessories – they have a huge selection to pick from!  www.themesnthings.com

When Puppies Turn Into Vampires

“I Want to Bite Your Neck”

With Halloween only 147 days away, I am starting to have a little fun and getting into the spirit of the haunting time of year.  The BIG question is, what am I going to be for Halloween this year?  Last year, when I was a lot smaller, I was this cute fairy and wore an adorable pink tutu and a handmade two-toned pink collar with beads and a boa, but now…my tutu only fits around my neck.  So the quest begins on what should I be this Halloween.  I am taking all suggestions into consideration, so please help me out and give me your thoughts!   (did you notice the little ghost that appeared in my picture when Mommy took this of meSpooky, eh?)  And don’t forget, if you are looking for some great awesome Halloween Props & accessories, check out Daddy’s website www.themesnthings.com   (the best time to pick up your Halloween props is early in the year, because the longer you wait in the year, all of the good stuff will be gone

Anyhow, my weekend was full of fun like it is every weekend, and we took a trip to PetSmart to pick up some things.  I wore my new Sporn Halter that Daddy bought me a few weeks ago, and I walked around the store like a champ with no pulling!  You gotta pick up one of these for your four-legged friend because these really work if you’re a dog or puppy that pulls alot when walking on a leash.  This Sporn Halter corrects that, instantly!  Upon walking into the store, I saw the coolest thing…  I saw this bright colorful….BIRD!  Yep, I said bird.  This lady took her bird shopping with her and her bird had a leash on too!  I laughed all day about that, because I never knew that birds wear leashes. 
I got to see all of my friends at PetSmart like Brett, Amber, Jane and Chuck and I even met a few new friends that took a shine to me.  I saw Amber in the training center, but I did not want to bother her since she was busy, but she saw me anyhow and snuck me a few treats. (Thanks Amber)  I even noticed this nice lady walking towards me and she was carrying a few stuffed animals.  One of them was a stuffed bunny….and I wanted it badly!  When she bent down to pet me, I snuck the bunny out of her arms!  LOL   I don’t even know why I did this because I don’t even touch the toys in the aisle, I just sniff em, but this bunny had some nice long ears that must have attracted me!  (I crack myself up some times!)  Anyhow, Daddy treated Mommy to lunch at McDonalds on our way home and we got to go through the Drive-Thru and Mommy snuck a photo of me dreaming of french fries! 
Since Summer time is for planting flowers and watching them bloom, we are happy to see Daddy’s prize flowers starting to open up and bloom.   Mommy even got a neat flower to put in her “Doggie” planter.  I think it was called Phlox and it should bloom red.  While Mommy and I were watering the flowers this morning, she got a great photo of a rainbow that appeared out of nowhere in the spray of the garden hose.  How cool is that?  I did not know that Mommy could make rainbows! 
Anyhow, I hope you have a great Monday and try to create your own rainbows today! 
Love always,

PetSmart HOWL-O-WEEN Costume Contest

Me and Daddy @ PetSmart

Daddy and Mommy took me to PetSmart today for their HOWL-O-WEEN Costume Contest and boy did I have a great time!  There were doggies of all shapes and sizes there, and even one doggie had long black hair (not sure what he was supposed to be), but I think that I was the cutest, but that is my opinion. LOL    I got my picture taken with Daddy & Mommy too, and want to thank them for taking me today to PetSmart.  I even got a doggie goodie bag with lots of treats, and I had to sample a treat when I got home. Yummy!  I had a long day and this puppy is pooped, and I need a nap with Daddy! 

Until Later – Nikita

Me and Mommy at PetSmart

My Halloween Fairy Costume

My Halloween Fairy Costume

Hi Everyone, it’s me, Nikita!  Mommy just finished my Halloween Fairy Costume and I am so excited!  I can’t wait to wear it tomorrow for PetSmarts Howl-0-ween Costume Contest!  (I hope I win)  If you want to meet me and see how I have grown up, I’ll be there by 2:30, so stop by and say hi!  I hope my friends from the Cleveland APL will stop by to see me too!  I can’t wait to see my friends at PetSmart too, because Jane and all the rest of the associates are really nice. 

Happy Halloween to everyone!  Hugs & wet puppy kisses, Nikita

P.S. – I hope I win the best costume on Thoughts Appear Blog too! 

Vote for Me!

Me and my Fairy Wings - I can fly!

Nikita’s Halloween Costume

Nikita’s Halloween Pink Tutu

Hi everyone, it’s me Nikita!  Mommy & Daddy got me this really awesome Halloween Costume…and it’s Pink! (I love Pink)  Here I am in my pink tutu and I also have pink Fairy wings and a pink boa for my collar!  I love running around the house in my costume, but I try to bite my fairy wings on my back because I can feel them flapping when I run.  

My Pink Fairy Wings - "I can fly like Tinkerbell"

I also forgot to mention that I have been living in my new home for a month now and I am so happy!  Daddy got me my first bone the other day and what a treat that was!  Mommy had to sew the nose back on my hedgehog that Grandma gave me because I kinda chewed it off.  (Thanks Mommy for knowing how to do this because I love that hog!)

Here are the things that I know how to do:

  1. I learned how to “shake” in 20 minutes
  2. I know how to cry when I have to go to the bathroom
  3. I definitely know how to chase leaves
  4. I sleep through the entire night without crying
  5. I don’t wet my bed
  6. I know exactly what times I eat (don’t be late)
  7. I growl at the UPS driver, every time
  8. I am tall enough to look out the window now
  9. I know how to sit on command, working on learning how to beg
  10. I love waiting for Daddy to come home from work

Things I still need to work on:

  1. I need to learn how to walk better on my leash
  2. I need to learn how to not lick the dishes in the dishwasher (don’t know if I will ever learn how NOT to do this – LOL)
  3. I need to learn how to not bite so hard, but I am still a puppy ya know

Checking out the Dishwasher - Lick Lick Lick


All in all, it has been a busy week and I still have lots of time left to investigate new things.  Hope all of you are enjoying reading all about me and watching me grow up!  Subscribe to my blog so you can keep up with me!

Puppy Kisses to you,