Shopping! Shopping!

"Four Paws Up!" for stores that welcome dogs, I say. Dogs like to shop! My personalized collar is proof. Luckily, Emmy was like-minded.

"Coco, we're going to a Healing Fair," she said one day.

A "Heeling" Fair? It sounded like school. I'm pretty well behaved, so I won't say I was looking forward to it. We drove into the parking lot of The Mesa, the store near the Granite Dells, and I saw the sign: a Healing Fair. Whew!

Priscilla's Pueblo Gifts sold Native American jewelry and pottery. "What a cute dog!" cried Priscilla. She took a picture of me on her cell phone. Me!

Emmy bought Indian bread but wouldn’t give me one crumb. (Don't tell her, but I ate the breadcrumbs she dropped on the kitchen floor. Yum!)

Then Emmy had her aura photo taken. It didn't look like her at all. Her face was covered in yellow and orange.

"That's the energy I give off, Coco," said Emmy. I didn't want to be cruel, Mom, so I didn't say anything. But the $25 she paid for that photo would have bought a lot of dog treats.

I can't say I felt healed when I left the Healing Fair, but I felt better than when I arrived.

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Emmy and I didn't run across a single ghost in Jerome, the ghost town between Prescott and Sedona. Emmy said the scariest thing about Jerome was the prices. Oh, and the long winding drive through the Prescott National Forest.

If Emmy hadn't held my leash so tightly, I might have been able to climb into a comfy looking bowl that was just my size in the Connor Hotel Store. The hotel, which is dog friendly, is more than 100 years old, and I could smell almost everything that ever happened there. Emmy couldn't relax. One minute she'd look at a price tag and gasp; the next she'd tug my leash and hiss, "Coco! No!"

I had a great time.

Magdalena's Bazaar was bizarre, Mom. It had a table with legs—a lady's legs, with stockings and shoes and everything. Emmy said it was folk art. I thought it was just weird.

What would a store called Sky Fire sell? Clouds and matches, I decided. Nope. But one of the things they sell is jewelry and carvings made from fossilized ivory, from 250,000-year-old mammoths, mastodons and walrus.

I started to think. What if they sold out of trinkets made from mammoths? What if they wanted to make jewelry out of, say, present-day canines? I broke into a sweat. Susan, who bakes fresh doggy biscuits every morning, put me at ease. Emmy bought a magnetic photo frame with a horse on it to encourage her with her dream of buying a horse.

I looked forward to Emmy's favorite shop, Designs On You, where the owner brings her dog in with her. Darn it, neither the owner or her dog were there. Emmy tried on all sorts of colorful clothes. "Coco, you're my Tim Gunn," said Emmy. "What do you think of this dress?"

Wait a minute--did Emmy say "gun?" I didn't know shopping was dangerous. I nervously wagged my tail. Emmy bought a va-va-va-voom, if I say so myself, sundress by Rainbow Jo. I wish I had a Hawaiian dress, Mom. Then Emmy and I could look like sisters!

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Emmy was happily surprised she could bring me to so many places. I thought everyone knew that Prescott is a dog-friendly town. Prescott even holds a Dogtoberfest every fall!

We didn't go to the PETCO or Pet Smart; Emmy said those stores were too pedestrian (noun and adverb, who knew?). Instead we went to pet boo-teeks. Oops--it's spelled "boutiques," which should be pronounced, "boo-teh-kwee-sss." Writing a journal is more stressful than I thought it would be.

At the Pet Depot Barkery, on Gurley Street, I rearranged the bottom-shelf merchandise but Charlotte, the owner, didn't mind a bit. Charlotte has a bakery for dogs and wanted to give me a big cookie, but Emmy nixed that plan. Charlotte gave me a tasty treat, though. Emmy told Charlotte you would visit the shop.

At Tickled Pink I turned green with envy over the K9NV collars. K9NV (get it? canine envy?) meets the "needs of pampered pets." I have needs, Mom. I know I have a collar, but Emmy says a girl can never have too many collars. Or did she say jewelry?

Emmy drove by Supporting Rescued Pets twice before she found it. It's not glitzy like the shops around the courthouse, but they had doggy Christmas ornaments and dishtowels and all sorts of things. They have a Sponsor-A-Pet Tree. You and I should sponsor a pet. Wait--I don't get an allowance. I guess you'd have to foot the bill, Mom.

Look how brave I am, standing next to a big hairy German Shepherd. OK, he's fake. But I look brave. Seriously, you should visit SRP, Mom. Proceeds from gift items go to local animal shelters and rescue organizations. They don't have a web site and Emmy says that's the kiss of death. And then what would happen to the poor dogs and cats? It made me want to cry. I'm so lucky I have you.
(SRP Collection, 722 E. Sheldon St., 928-445-4338)

Speaking of web sites, Emmy thought my journal would be better as a blog. With pictures. Online, no less. And with Emmy correcting my mistakes and adding her opinion from time to time to time. I had mixed feelings, Mom. I didn't want the entire world to know how much I miss you. But how many times would I, as a budding writer, have the chance to work with a professional editor? Formerly of National Geographic, no less.

We agreed to collaborate. Emmy loves playing on a computer. I did a fair amount of waiting for her down in our basement. Glad you put a dog bed down there, Mom (yawn). G' night.