Success of Barkery & Bath’s Online Store Featured in KC Business Journal

Barkery & Bath Co-owner Delena recently sat down with the Kansas City Business Journal to discuss all things Barkery, but most importantly, the online store.

If you’ve been a long-time customer of the Barkery, you may remember when the first online store was launched several years back. While some aspects of the online store were great, it just wasn’t exactly where we wanted it as far as functionality and the ability to compete with big box stores and online competitors. But if you’ve visited our new online store, you’ll find it chock-full of products, auto-ship options with discounts and even the ability to have your pet’s food delivered locally for free!

Highlights from the article:

The new e-commerce site integrates with the company’s point-of-sale system, and it sells only to customers in the Kansas City area. The Barkery invested in a van and uses existing employees to make area deliveries.

Since the February launch, online sales have increased every month. By June, online sales were up 49.4% compared with May. The new offering is attracting existing and new customers, and it’s leading to automated, recurring orders, Marketing Coordinator Courtney Klitzke said.

The new site was worth the investment and the risk, Stout said.

“It’s been phenomenal,” she said. “It brings excitement back to you that you can stay and continue the growth and satisfy the needs of pet parents.” 

View the full article here with your KCBJ login

Choosing the Right Brush for Your Pet

Whether pet hair is driving you crazy this summer or you’re just looking for a great way to bond with your pet – brushing them regularly is both a great way to keep your home free of hair and to spend a little quality time with your furry friend. You might not know that different types of dogs require different types of brushes, so we’ve gathered a few simple tips to help you choose and use the right brush for your dog.

Slicker brushes:Typically used on medium to long, curly haired dogs like Golden Retrievers, Cocker Spaniels, Yorkshire Terriers and St. Bernards, the slicker brush has fine, short wires close together on a flat surface that helps remove mats in the fur. Always be gentle when using this type of brush as too much pressure can cause discomfort for your pet.

Rakes: Shaped like a razor with one to two rows of tightly spaced pins, the rake brush should be used with minimal pressure and is designed to penetrate your pet’s thick coat and remove any dead undercoat near the skin. This GroomNinja brush sold at either Brookside Barkery locations or online is great for breeds like German Shepherds Malamutes, Chow Chows or long-haired cats.

Bristle Brushes: Usually used on short-haired, smooth coated dogs that tend to shed often. Clusters of tightly packed bristles remove loose hair and can be used on breeds like Pugs, Italian Greyhounds, and Jack Russel and Boston Terriers.

Pin Brushes:  Pin brushes areoval-shaped and have loosely-arranged flexible wires with pins on them – much like brushes that us humans use. The pin brush will even pick up loose hair before it falls off completely, but doesn’t benefit your pet much otherwise. This brush is best used when finishing off the grooming process to provide fluffiness to the coat.

While some fur types shed more than others, virtually all cats and dogs shed during the summer. While we can’t prevent shedding completely, hopefully these tips will make combating unwanted pet hair a more manageable task this summer. If you’re unsure about what type of brush to use on your pet or how to use it, please do not hesitate to contact us or chat with any Barkery employee when you stop in to either our Brookside or Lee’s Summit stores.

August Special – Fromm Freebies!

Fromm Family Pet Foods is on special this month! This family-owned brand has supported neighborhood pet retailers for decades, and is committed to quality, healthy ingredients in each and every recipe.

With a huge variety of grain-free and grain-inclusive formulas for both dog and cat, our staff can help you select the best recipe for your pet. This month at the Barkery:

Buy any Fromm dry dog recipe, and get a FREE bag of Crunchy O’s Dog Treats!
-or-
Buy any Fromm dry cat recipe, and get a FREE can of cat food.

This special is available in-store only.

Why You Should Never Store Pet Food in a Plastic Container

It’s easy to see why so many pet owners purchase plastic food containers for their pets’ food.

They’re convenient, there is an assumption the food will stay fresh longer, and there’s typically a pour spot to make food distribution easier. Plus, plastic pet food containers are available at pet stores, big box stores and of course, online. However, using these food storage containers can result in serious pet health issues.

Because we have grown up to often store food in plastic containers like Tupperware, we typically don’t give it a second thought when we do the same for our pets’ food. However, with the amount of research that has been published on eating food out of plastic and the potential health issues it can create, the era of using plastic food storage containers has changed dramatically. Families are ditching the plastic and switching to safer alternatives.

But what about our pets? Are they receiving the same consideration when it comes to food storage? According to research, not so much.

How Animals Become Sick from Plastic Containers
When the fats and oils of kibble make contact with the walls of a pet food container, they begin to oxidize.

In other words, over time, the residual fats and oils that have settled along the inside of the storage container start to grow rancid and develop invisible molds that can wreak havoc on your pet’s health. Each new batch of food poured into the containers also grows rancid due to not washing the container.

The Problem with Plastic Pet Food Containers
Research has proven that certain plastic containers leach chemicals into food. Chemicals in plastic like BPA have been shown to have hormone-like, estrogenic and cancer-producing properties. But BPA has been removed from some plastic storage containers and replaced with a different chemical called bisphenol-S (BPS), right? Wrong. According to scientific research, BPS appears to be just as toxic (if not more so) than BPA. Researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch discovered that even minute concentrations—less than one part per trillion—of BPS can disrupt cellular functioning back in 2013. Metabolic disorders like obesity, diabetes, and even cancer, are potential ramifications of such disruptions.

But the Problems with Plastic Pet Food Containers Don’t End There
Phthalates, which are used as plasticizers, including pet food storage containers, have shown to “Disrupt the endocrine systems of wildlife, causing testicular cancer, genital deformations, low sperm counts, and infertility in polar bears, deer, whales, and otters, just to name a few.” – Doctor Karen Becker

What are My Options?
• Keep the food in its original bag – recommended
• Keep the food in the bag and place inside of the plastic container
• Switch to a glass food storage container and wash regularly
• Don’t buy a bag larger than a 30 day supply for your pet

If you have questions regarding the storage of your pet’s food, please do not hesitate to contact us or chat with any Barkery employee when you stop in to either our Brookside or Lee’s Summit stores.

Why Do Cats Love Cardboard Boxes?

No matter how extravagant the cat toy, it’s a known fact that cats are more interested in one thing – the cardboard box it came in. But, why is this? The cat lovers at Brookside Barkery have gotten to the bottom of why our feline friends are drawn to their cardboard castles.

Safety

For cats, boxes are a stress reducing safe zone. When hiding in their box, they can observe their environment while eliminating the option of a predator sneaking up on them. Us humans and other pets have to come directing into their field of vision – so no surprises are in store. When cats get spooked, their initial reaction is to run and hide. The perfect safe space? A cardboard box!

Insulation

Cardboard boxes make for great insulation! The combination of cardboard’s insulation and the small space of a box makes for the perfect area for your kitty to curl up and relax. Whether your home is hot or cold, the insulation of a cardboard box help regulate your cat’s body temperature – creating the perfect temperature for a cat nap.

Texture

Cardboard is the perfect texture for your cat to scratch and bite. Cats love the feeling of digging their claws into a cardboard box while stretching or simply just to play. Many cat owners find their cats have shredded their cardboard box to bits after all of their biting and scratching. To your kitty, a simple cardboard box is interesting enough to keep them entertained for days.

While all of these reasons make up why cats love cardboard boxes, they all seem to have one thing in common – cats love confined, enclosed spaces. So, the next time your kitty doesn’t acknowledge the fancy toy you bought them and goes straight for the box, remember they are safe, cozy and entertained.

Be Informed: The Truth Behind the FDA Investigation into DCM and Grain-Free Diets for Dogs

The FDA continues to investigate a potential dietary link between canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and dogs eating certain grain-free dog foods, despite any solid conclusions.

On June 27, 2019, the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) issued an update on its investigation connecting certain canine diets and Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM), a type of canine heart disease, to grain-free diets. DCM impacts less than 1% of dogs in the U.S., with only .000007% reportedly related to diet.

DCM occurs when a dog’s heart muscle creates an enlarged heart. As the heart and its chambers become dilated, it becomes harder for the heart to pump, potentially causing heart valves to leak, which can lead to a buildup of fluids in the chest and abdomen, otherwise known as congestive heart failure. DCM is prevalent in larger dogs, with multiple possible causes, including taurine (a sulfur-containing amino acid important in the metabolism of fats) deficiency, a well-documented as a potential cause of DCM.

However, the FDA is focused more on diet as a cause despite The American Veterinary Medical Association estimating 77 million pet dogs in the United States, with the majority eating pet food without apparently developing DCM.

The dog foods in question are those containing legumes such as peas, chickpeas, lentils, other legume seeds, or potatoes listed as primary ingredients. The FDA began investigating this matter after it received reports of DCM in dogs that had been eating these diets for a period of months to years. However, the FDA has little evidence to make any final conclusions or to take any action.

The FDA continues to believe that the potential association between canine diet and DCM is a complex scientific issue that may involve multiple factors, and that the actual cause has still yet to be determined.

Facts from the FDA investigation:

• Among all the cases from all brands that were reported to the FDA, the overwhelming majority of impacted dogs belonged to breeds genetically predisposed to DCM, a disease that was first discovered in the 1980’s, well before the grain-free diets were available for pets.
• The DCM cases reported to the FDA included dogs who ate both grain and grain-free diets.
• Three veterinarians that assisted the FDA in their investigation published an article in the Journal of American Veterinary Medical that stated,

The extent of this issue is not clear, not all cases have been confirmed to be linked to diet, and a true association has not been proven to exist.

Millions of dogs that suffer from gluten allergies are able to live healthy lives because of grain-free solutions like those carried at Brookside Barkery and Bath. If you switched to your dog to a grain-free diet, think back to the reasons why you made the decision. Maybe to help prevent leaky gut syndrome, eliminate food sensitivities or intolerances to a particular grain or to maintain optimal weight in your dog. The list goes on.

If you are concerned, have your veterinarian measure your dog’s methionine, cysteine and taurine levels in both whole blood and plasma, and send it to a diagnostic laboratory experienced with the appropriate reference ranges for circulating taurine. If the levels are lower than normal, discuss the appropriate next steps with your veterinarian.

 

The Benefits of Probiotics for Your Pet

Probiotic supplements are everywhere – you may even be taking one yourself! Just like us humans, probiotics have many benefits for your pet as well.

Probiotics are nutritional supplements containing live microorganisms (bacteria and/or yeast) which aid digestion and regulate the immune system. When a probiotic is ingested by your pet, it boosts the number of “good” microorganisms present in the GI tract, which helps them to outnumber the “bad” ones.

Studies have also shown that probiotic supplementation can help treat infections outside of the GI tract, including allergic and inflammatory diseases. This isn’t too surprising, considering a large portion of the body’s immune system is associated with the gut.

Brookside Barkery’s Favorite Probiotic Products:

NoteWe recommend rotating products to ensure a better balance in the gut.

Good bacteria are crucial for the health of your pet’s gut. They also support brain, digestion, assimilation of nutrients, and immune system. These reasons alone should be enough to start supplementing probiotics into your pet’s diet!

Want more information on the benefits of probiotic supplements for your pet? Come by either Brookside or Lee’s Summit Barkery location today! A member of our knowledgeable staff will help you select the best probiotic supplement for your pet to keep their health on track.

July Sale – Primal & Koha

Save $$$ on Primal & Koha pet food this month at the Barkery.

KOHA Pet Food

  • Buy 2 get 1 FREE all cat cans
  • $1 off all dog cans

SHOP KOHA 

Primal Pet Food

  • $3 off 3lb Frozen
  • $4 off 4lb Frozen
  • $5 off 6lb Frozen
  • $4 off 14oz Freeze Dried
  • Buy 1 get 1 FREE all treats

Plus – Primal is offering a “Build a Bowl” special with $4 off different frozen supplements each week!

SHOP PRIMAL

Protect Your Pup’s Paws from Scorching Pavement with Pawks!

You may have seen what can happen to canine paws that come in contact with severely hot pavement.

It is heartbreaking to see our four-legged friends endure so much pain from doing one of the things they enjoy the most: going for a walk. Have you ever been at the pool and walked on hot pavement? Now imagine that feeling but much worse. Thankfully, PAWks, protective socks for your pal, were created to help with this very dangerous issue. PAWks feature an anti-slip wrap around silicone sole to keep the socks securely on your dog’s feet. Just like humans need protective footwear, so do our furry friends.

Here are a few other conditions where PAWks can come in handy:

  • Cold weather (not recommended for ice, however)
  • Salted sidewalks or streets
  • Other debris getting into the paws
  • Avoid scratches on your leather furniture or hardwood floors

Protect your pup from the scorching heat in Kansas City this summer with PAWks Indoor/Outdoor socks today! Stop in to either our Brookside or Lee’s Summit location, or order from the convenience of your home.