When headed to the mall during the holiday season (or any season, for that matter), it's not forefront in our minds to add "take cats and dogs with" to the to-do list right under "sharpen elbows" and "practice war face." But given the price of quality Santa costumes these days and a lack of willing elves, a visit to the Shops at Willow Bend for a Santa Paws photo session might be the only affordable way we can acceptably humiliate our bestest wittle friends. See, they'll willingly wear the Santa hats -- hell, they even like them -- but after all the ornament murders, gift ribbon massacres and, well, warm liquid tree skirt "baths," we just have to get back at the little four-legged miracles. We know we're not alone, so we'll see you with yours from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday. Pet owners may enter the mall through any entrance but the food court. All pets (and Willow Bend lists welcome pet varieties as "all creatures great and small," so take that as you will) must be up to date on shots and on leashes or in small carriers. Photo packages, through Snapfish, vary from $20 to $45. Visit shopwillowbend.com/santapaws.
Tue., Dec. 6, 6-9 p.m.; Tue., Dec. 13, 6-9 p.m., 2011