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By - Peter

Christchurch shopping centre becomes NZ’s first to allow pets

The Hub Hornby was the first shopping centre in the country to allow customers to bring their pets shopping from 6pm to 9pm last Thursday, The Hub Hornby manager Jason Marsden says.

Now, the centre plans to make it a regular occasion, with one more event in June and potentially more after that.

If the demand is there, the centre will keep allowing animals in, Mr Marsden says.

Around 100 dogs, a few cats, rabbits and rats were at the opening. “No dogs pooped on site at all,” however.

And while there were a few moments where some “wee” accidents did happen, it wasn’t a problem for tenants.

“A dedicated cleaner was on standby for any accidents,” Mr Marsden says.

As well as being an outing for the animals, it was also a great outing for their owners, who talked while the animals played.

“The owners couldn’t just stand there, they had to talk to each other. It’s really cool.”

The practice of animals accompanying shoppers is fairly common across the world, but up until now, New Zealand shopping centres only allowed certified service animals inside.

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