This specialized kitty and doggie depot is a one-stop shop for all pet needs, including standard toys and treats, and an impressive selection of unusual merchandise. The stocked shelves include more than 200 stylish collars (many for $19.99), lovely leads ($19.99), and decorative bowls for dogs and cats (starting at $10.99).
Boasting indoor and outdoor play areas in a safe, entertaining, and well-monitored space, Ocean Dog Club presents social pups ages 4 months or older with a bevy of new playmates. Canines of all sizes and personalities band together in strategically tailored play groups, fostering a comfortable environment for exercise and carefree romping. A temperature-controlled indoor area claims a hefty 6,000 square feet sheltered from the elements, and an easy-to-clean, dog-specific turf covers 3,000 outdoor square feet of prime training grounds for biathletes to train for both tail-chasing and rollover events. Pups always happily mingle under the watchful eye of a professional daycare coach, who keeps four-leggers safe while their busy two-legged owners are away. Ocean Dog Club is open from 6:45 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Barking Lot's doggy-sitters understand that canine parents like to check in on their pups throughout the day. Six days a week, they post Facebook photos of day-care dogs romping around the 8,000-square-foot, climate-controlled playground. Three days a week, they post YouTube videos of especially exciting moments, such as a game of chase in the large dog play area or a round of Red Rover in the small pooch zone. Dogs who spend the night snuggle into a comfortable kennel outfitted in fleecy bedding. Calming music plays as pooches snooze, and optional play times, cuddling, and even bedtime stories can keep pups from feeling homesick.
In addition to providing a fun place to play and spend the night, pet- care techs ensure pets are safe: rubber floors cushion joints, and workers are certified in pet first aid and CPR. Select staffers also use their canine knowledge to teach training classes or groom pups and cats from nose to tail.
Bentley is a poodle–shih tzu mix with hair flowing down the floor. His distrust of strangers was so intense that he couldn't even go into a PetSmart without getting kicked out. The same story applied to Brodie, a rescued poodle, who snapped at every groomer he ever had. But because she was a certified trainer before becoming a groomer, Mandi Gorton could read their signals and knew when they just needed to chill out and when they needed to know they were safe. Now the two dogs are among the most well-behaved clients of The Green Paw Spa. As Gorton observes, dogs—like people—are just more agreeable when they know cookies and massages are coming.
When Gorton describes The Green Paw Spa as a "holistic pet salon," she means every word. Each appointment begins with Gorton bringing the furry client to a relaxed state. Then she starts pampering with organic, biodegradable shampoos and conditioners. Her own dog, a border collie mix named Wamba, has allergies so intense that just the air of a traditional grooming salon causes her to break out in hives. So to help keep her and all dogs healthy, Gorton bans harsh chemicals from the spa, right down to the furniture, which is made of recycled materials. In fact, the South Bark blueberry facial she uses is so pure that it's edible, which probably explains why most dogs don't mind having it worked into their snouts. Further eco-friendly touches include a bathing system that uses approximately 2 gallons of water to wash a dog, compared to the 10–15 gallons used by traditional baths, and a pet taxi that carpools companions back and forth from their homes to save owners gas and let dogs brag to their friends about having a chauffer.
Mocha’s Pet Salon, named after the owner’s dog, operates under the philosophy that pets should be groomed in a place that’s as relaxing and stress-free as home. The salon’s team strives to build a cozy environment where pooches feel comfortable while they’re getting bathed, trimmed, cleaned, and pampered with oatmeal treatments. As a result, dogs of all shapes and sizes prance out of the salon’s two locations looking, feeling, and smelling like a million bucks.
For more than 20 years, professional dog groomer Linda has kept her canine clients’ fur healthy and neat with a number of services and treatments. Linda's standard grooming services clean pups from nose to tail, as she shampoos fur, clips nails, and cleans ears. During full grooming services, Linda trims fur with hand scissoring techniques specific to each breed.
Dogs romp around 7,500 square feet of cushioned rubber flooring, nuzzling with new friends and learning off-leash etiquette like every toddler eventually must. This is the scene at Performance Plus K9 Activity Center during its Perfect Pups pet obedience course, a seven-week program that teaches pooches aged 8–18 weeks how to respond to easy commands and respect owners' homes. It's just one of the obedience courses that the dog-loving staff at Performance Plus offer—they also provide classes in competition obedience and agility. Plus, they recently added new services including grooming and boarding, so pups can stay all day.
After nearly getting his teeth kicked in by an errant hoof, Stephen Briggs decided that it was probably a good time to walk away from his rodeo career. Bidding his favorite rodeo clowns goodbye, Stephen joined the family business started by his father, Frederick Alvin Briggs—called "Allie" by his customers—more than 30 years ago.
Continuing in his father's footsteps, Stephen now oversees Allie's Store, where his team supplies horse tack, Western and work apparel, and supplies for creatures that range from farm animals to pets. Under Stephen's leadership, Allie's Store now also stocks all-natural animal foods, due to increased customer requests for healthier food for their pets. The shelves display bagged edibles from lines such as Earthborn Holistic and Blue Buffalo. This is the same food the Briggs family feeds its own pets—two dogs, two cats, and four horses named Jessie, Oso, Buddy, and Hoss who exchange local gossip with customers at the adjacent barn.
At Newport Equestrian, the mother-daughter team of Suzanne Hourihan and Kamala Duffy handle all instruction duties, helping beginners and experienced riders alike to improve their skills. The instructors root their approach in the principles of sound equitation—a focus that Suzanne inherited while training under Irish Olympic rider Nole McGee as a child. Kamala, a USEF hunter/jumper competitor, carries on her mother's passion as she coaches riders of all stripes, from casual pleasure and trail riders to show jumpers intent on winning a gold medal before some cool new Flash game makes the Olympics obsolete. During private and semi-private lessons on flatwork courses, Kamala teases out riders' potential while treating them with respect and encouraging them to overcome the improvement plateaus they'll inevitably reach.
Coated in eco-friendly and hygienic astro turf and dotted with jungle gyms and mini pools, Camp Canine’s yard stays open to dogs no matter the season or weather. That’s because Camp Canine’s believe that dogs thrive on fresh air regardless of temperature, and strive to make their playground hospitable even in the winter. Dogs that aren’t interested in tromping through the snow can cavort indoors, in Camp Canine’s climate-controlled play spaces supervised by dog caretakers who are trained in all size and demeanor of dog. These experts separate dogs based on size to ensure teacup poodle gangs leave the big breeds in peace, and encourage as much exercise as possible. During overnight boarding sessions, dogs spend their nights in cozy kennels, drifting off as classical music plays and owners gaze lovingly at their sleeping hound from the password-protected Snout Cam.