My mom has been feeling sad because the Downtown Dog Lounge closed its doors in Belltown. The location was so convenient. We could walk (and sometimes did). We could be there by bus in 10 minutes.
The staff were so nice to us. “They felt like family,” my mom says.
I used to go there almost every Sunday, while my mom went to work out at her gym. I would sit up front with the receptionist. I got spoiled by Summer, who’s my adopted big sister.
Everybody liked me. “Gracie gets along so well,” the staff told my mom. “She invites the other dogs to play but she doesn’t come across as aggressive.”
Aggressive? Me? Why would I?
One day my mom Cathy brought me in for a bath. When she came back, my nails were painted bright red. I finally looked like a real princess. Mom was a little mortified. “I hope nobody thinks we paid for this,” she said. But of course she told everybody we met, “Look at her toenails!” She even insisted we blog about the “pawdicure.”
Then when my mom had to go to the Emergency Room, my Uncle Lance dropped me off at the Dog Lounge. Summer was thrilled to find me there when she came to work the next day. She found me some terrific new dog food and charged Mom’s account. She made sure I had so many treats I didn’t miss home at all. They sent me home via dog taxi with a cute “Get Well” card for my mom.
And then there was the time a couple of years ago when Mom went out of town. (She hates to travel.) Of course I got to spend the night in the Dog Lounge. When mom came to get me, the staff person said, “Gracie was barking in her crate. She wasn’t happy. So I took her out and she slept with me.”
Or the time Cynthia said, “Gracie tells us what she wants. We put her in back and she comes to scratch on the door to come up front.” Well, of course. Cynthia knows how to treat a real princess.
Or Summer taking me to Ewe-topia so I could herd sheep. We had a great day together.
Or the time they dressed me up for Halloween and gave me treats on my birthday. (I got to spend Mom’s birthday there too, but she didn’t get any treats.)
Sure, the Dog Lounge has branches nearby. There’s one over on Elliott. To get there we have to walk through Lower Kinnear Park, which my mom says is dangerous. Or we could walk but there’s no sidewalk that goes directly there. Yep…you read that right. The sidewalk disappears. My mom opts for the park. “The odds of being attacked by a homeless person are a lot less than the odds of being run over by a car,” she says. “Maybe when we get a new mayor the city will fix Mercer Street.”
Then there’s Capitol Hill. We tried it last Sunday. “Forget it,” Mom said. “It’s a long trek to get there and gong home? The worst bus in Seattle and a TON of traffic. If I have to spend an hour getting you, I might as well take you for a walk to the Regrade Dog Park.”
But I know we’ll be back. My mom knows how much I like Summer and the rest of the gang. “Maybe every other week,” Mom says. “Or once a month at least. And then, Gracie, your bath…”
Yeah, I know. We’re both feeling sad right now. It’s like losing a family who moved away.