Fetch is a hub of feline and canine accouterments in the Old Port, employing a user-friendly retail experience for both two-legged and four-legged shoppers. Buckets of toys, bones, and frisbees greet dogs at snout-level, and a broad range of pet food targets human eyes. Locally produced munchables include Barkwheats hypoallergenic treats from Litchfield ($7.99) and Hula Lula chicken jerky from Marblehead, Massachusetts ($13.99). Take your pick from an entire wall of collars, many of them locally made, for animals in sizes ranging from teacup to Disneyland teacup ride. Cat owners can stock up on the FroliCat Bolt laser toy ($19.95), a randomly patterned laser pointer sure to captivate furry friends for hours. Today's Groupon can also be used for gift certificates, ideal for presenting to pet fanciers in honor of their companion's graduation from obedience school with a master's degree in rolling over.
A nonprofit organization committed to therapeutic riding, Hearts & Horses Therapeutic Riding Center introduces riders of all ages and ability levels to the health-boosting benefits of riding and caring for horses. During private and group lessons, instructors certified by the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship and the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association teach budding equestrians the ins and outs of both English- and Western-style riding. They also conduct summer camps for children, where they coach tots through lessons in general horsemanship, jumping, or rodeo riding. Riders can also lease one of the center's horses to facilitate riding practice, introduce children to the equestrian arts, or take their place at a dinner party.In addition to general riding lessons, instructors foster concentration, self-perception, and confidence in those with physical, developmental, and emotional disabilities during special riding programs designed to equip participants with practical skills. Programs build confidence using centered riding techniques, which encourage riders to use intuition to move more fluidly with their horses rather than relying on formulaic motions or commands.