The first thing I saw when I walked in the door was the Petco tennis balls, for ninety nine cents, so of course I grabbed one. I haven't yet given it to Elka to decimate. Also by the door, they had sign ups for dog training classes, which purported to be force-free. The treats I got (carrot flavored, among other things, I believe) were the kind that they had in the display for use as training treats. I used them this morning on our walk, and Elka likes them a good deal, but each treat is about 50% larger than I'd like it to be, and they're rather crumbly, so breaking them in half doesn't always come off successfully. They smell carrot-y and don't have sugar in them. There is molasses, but I feel less bad about molasses, as it does have some nutritional value.
I got those little Natural Balance food rolls to cut up for treats on walks as well. Elka is accepting again of hot dogs on our walk, after a brief hiatus in which I gave her beef leftovers, but I wanted to try the food roll things as well. Less sodium, almost certainly. Not as cost effective as hot dogs, but whichever. The bone treat is, well, just a "here you go" treat I got for the sake of it. I was holding it in the rawhide aisle when a new dog owner with her adopted American Stafforshire Terrier (I think. He could've been a mix. He had beautiful eyes) came around the corner and she looked at me and said, somewhat in desperation, "what do you give your dog to chew if you don't give rawhide?", referencing the possible dangers of rawhide becoming a blockage, etc. I recommended bully sticks (though cautioned her that the "regular" ones can be rather smelly), as they're completely digestible. The dog was a sweetie, and when I saw him from another aisle five minutes later, he ran to me like a long lost friend.
The Spot On seemed like a definite necessity this year, as it seems more buggy outdoors than ever before. Also, Elka and I are walking in the park, in places we haven't gone before, and fleas and ticks and mosquitoes are all bad news. I've used this brand before, and it actually ends up smelling a lot like orange essential oil, which is kind of nice.
A couple things I didn't like about Petco: they had Beta fish in what were essentially clear plastic takeout containers, of the sort your egg drop soup comes in. They had cans of "bark away" or some such nonsense in between two different kinds of clickers, and above the easy walk harnesses. They had hardly any variety in collars and leashes, and most of the collars had plastic buckles.
A couple of things I liked about Petco: The things I bought seemed reasonably priced. Dogs are allowed in the store. They had a cat adoption event that day. They had bowls of dog biscuits at checkout, presumably so your dog could get a treat. They had lots of dog training books all over, and magazines. They had lots of clickers and lots of treats.