The store I work at is not particularly kid friendly. Purchasing something takes between 20 - 60 minutes and there's no games, flashy lights or anything of interest for children to stay occupied with during that time period. Some of the time people bring their kids in and the kids wait patiently bored out of their minds, but manage to do that without causing a great deal of chaos. Then there's times when it's clear that the parents have no control over their children, and so the kids just run around the store grabbing things and knocking things over.
Today we had three families in, with multiple children each, and none of them bothered to even attempt to control their children, who promptly formed a street gang and began holding hands while they ran around shouting at the top of their lungs and knocked things down. One of the smaller kids, probably about three, took a display box and began to kick it like a soccer ball out of the store. Ignored by his parents the kid kicked it down the mall until he was no longer visible from the store. Eventually a stranger at Perks who had watched the kid leave the store and head off down the mall lead him back to the store and that was about the only thing that prevented the kid from vanishing without a trace.
At a certain point I just can not imagine wanting to be the ringmaster of the three ring circus that is parenthood. I head through my mother that my cousin Lindsy (pictured above during her Cuba wedding) is pregnant which means that my grandparents will soon be great-grand parents. Some days I'd like to have a kid, but mostly I just realize I'm barely able to keep myself from dying in some sort of horrible accident on a daily basis, and to have to be responsible for someone else would drive me crazier quicker.
I'll go the Ryan Pears route and try dogs first. At least you don't have to bring them shopping with you.