N, Q, R at Fifth Ave.-59th St.; 4, 5, 6 at 59th St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
This venue is closed.
The truth is, pet stores are often creepy places. The troubling odors, that blacklit back room with the fish tanks, the sad yapping from those little cages—even the most blasé visitor often leaves with the feeling that, pedigree be damned, a shelter adoption is the only way to go. That said, the experience at Le Chien couldn't be happier. Owner Lisa Gilford acts more as a link to breeders, among whom she has extensive contacts, than storekeeper, bringing in puppies from only the best, most humane breeders; she never has more than eight dogs in the store, and they're penned, not caged. Gilford's range of services is formidable--the grooming department, complete with shampoo girls and dryers, looks better than a lot of neighborhood hair salons. She does doggy day care and housebreaking, too. Upstairs, there's a world of pet indulgences, from gingerbread men to pearl necklaces. No wonder her clientele includes obsessive pet lovers like Liz Taylor and Vera Wang, not to mention Lizzie Grubman, who owns a pair of Yorkies named Peanut and Crunch, and reports that "I send them there for grooming, and on Halloween they come back with adorable costumes on." Pet snacks and accessories ranging from doggy beds to fancy collar sets are also sold; pups start at about $2,500. It really is a dog's life.