Brookside Barkery

The Baths of Brookside are Remodeled and Ready!

When it comes to giving your favorite four-legged friend a bath, we know it can be a real challenge – especially the cleaning up part! Brookside Barkery understands the struggle – and that’s why we’ve recently upgraded our self-serve bathing station with brand new, state of the art bathing equipment, new floor tile and even a fresh coat of paint!

Barkery groomingGone are the days of lifting a heavy, wet dog in and out of the tub. Yep, we’ve got brand new step ladders for your furry friend to climb right on in and then right on out – fresh as a daisy in spring! Bathe your best pal at the Barkery and you can forget about a house filled with the eye-watering aroma known to all as the dreaded, “wet dog” smell.

The Barkery also has brand new drying equipment with powerful warm (not hot) air dryers so there’s no chance of burning your pet’s skin! Our self-serve baths also include access to clean towels, silicone-free shampoos, and sanitized grooming tools.

With winter weather around the corner, also be sure to try our own Barkery paw balm to soothe paws that may become cracked from the cold, dry weather.

Click here to see Bath pricing, or better yet – stop by our Brookside location and check out our sparkling new bathing station for yourself! Your pet will leave looking and feeling like a Westminster Best in Show champ!

Brookside Barkery

4 Signs Your Cat Totally Loves You

4 Signs Your Cat Totally Loves You

Signs of feline affection can be subtle or downright hard to read. At Brookside Barkery, we know how important it is to our customers that your pets are happy, so we’ve built a list of some behaviors that might just mean that love is in the air! Look for the following feline behaviors for confirmation of true love and adoration between you and your furry companion.

Following You Around (Everywhere)

You hear the th-thud-thud of four paws hitting the floor when you stand up from the couch. You nearly take a tumble while carrying a large pot of water over to the sink because someone is underfoot. You haven’t used the bathroom alone in years. All of these are signs that you are lucky enough to have a cat that doesn’t want to leave your side. This one is pretty clear-cut, but if your buddy is always following you around, you can bet he loves you a whole bunch. Consider bringing him to your work, school, or other social functions—a built in conversation piece and amazing lifestyle choice all in one!

Offering a Slow BlinkBarkery Bath

Cats do a lot of talking with their eyes and one very special way they say “I love you” is through the slow blink. When a cat is happy and content with you, she may just look over and slowly close and reopen her eyes. In this they are saying, “Hey friend, I love you, and I feel comfortable enough around you to let my guard down.” This is basically a marriage proposal from a cat and the best response is a reciprocated slow blink accompanied by the warm feeling in your heart from the certainty that your cat loves you. (Helpful tip: The slow blink is also a great way to introduce yourself in a non-threatening way to a new cat to show that you mean no harm.)

 Kneading or “Making Biscuits”

There are competing theories about why exactly cats knead. One theory holds that adult cats forever associate kneading with the comfort of nursing (kittens knead to stimulate their mother’s milk production), so when a cat kneads near her human, it shows she is relaxed and comfortable with her family. If that’s not love, what is? And when that kneading happens on your lap and is accompanied by purring and an intense, searching gaze, you know you have one content cat on your hands!

The Tail Has It

Cats often greet people they like with a question-mark-shaped tail. Pay attention to your cat’s tail to judge how happy she is to see you.

There you have it, four cat behaviors that are sure signs of true love (or at least true like!). If none of these behaviors seem familiar to you, Brookside Barkery has plenty of treats, toys, and cozy perches for your cat to enjoy – who says you can’t buy love?! Stop by the Barkery in Brookside or Lee’s Summit and pick up a special treat for your favorite feline friend today!

*Thank you for the tips!

Help! My Cat Brought Me a Mouse!

Anyone who has owned a cat for an extended period of time knows the reality of this scenario! Your sweet harmless kitten could, without any notice, turn into a deadly hunter on the prowl! And it’s really not your sweet cat’s fault. He is just following his instincts as a natural born hunter. Cats have an innate desire to catch things and hunt. It’s all part of the thrill of the chase. But why does your cat present you with the catch, as if thoughtfully leaving you a special gift to find!

WHY?!- Whether you enjoy gross mouse surprises or not, your cat thinks that you will. A mother cat will thoughtfully catch prey and bring it to her kittens to eat. Her gesture of leaving this dead mouse on your doorstep, at your feet, or Brookside Barkery even possibly in your bed, is actually an act of kindness. She considers you part of her family and would rather offer you her killing than consume it on her own. While this is sweet, you may not actually appreciate this gesture of kindness.

PREVENTION- Keep your cat from being a natural born hunter by keeping him inside. If this is not an option, try attaching a bell to his collar. Brookside Barkery and Bath provides a wide selection of collars and accessories for your cat. Stop in today to find one perfectly suited for your feline’s comfort and style. Adding a bell to the collar serves as a warning to mice and birds and helps to scare off potential prey by thwarting their ability to stealthily sneak up on it. This way, your cat can indulge his hunting instincts, but you are reducing the likelihood he’ll be successful and leave a present on your doorstep.

DISTRACTION- It can also be helpful to play with your cat in a way that satisfies her cat-and-mouse chase desires. You can do this by making or buying any type of interactive pet toy that simulates a sneaking prey. Look for the type of toy that you can move in front of your cat’s face, like a streamer or a ball on a string. Stop by Brookside Barkery and Bath to pick up some exciting and interactive toys. Your cat will enjoy the tease and want to take down the object, which is much better than taking down a live animal (or your feet as you come around the corner). Your cat can let out his pent up hunting energy on something safe and satisfying, as opposed to injuring a human or animal. Instinct is tough to overcome, so channel it in a way that is efficient, entertaining, and safe for the entire family.

*Special thanks to Litter Robot for these helpful tips!

Brookside Barkery

Caring for Your Aging Pet

At Brookside Barkery, we know pets aren’t just pets — they are a part of the family. As your pet ages, it is important to consult your veterinarian for help providing the proper care for your senior pet’s changing needs.

Every animal is different, so the senior life stage occurs at different ages in different pets. For instance, dogs are typically considered seniors at seven years old, but large dogs age more quickly than smaller dogs. Cats can be considered mature at seven years and seniors at 11 years old. Breed and species aside, your pet’s genetics, nutrition, health and environment will ultimately determine when your pet is considered a senior.

One of the telltale signs of increasing age in pets is a decline in physical activity. For instance, previously active pets may not play as much, and both dogs and cats may need assistance climbing on and off the bed or couch. Dr. Stacy Eckman, clinical assistant professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM), explained when pet owners can expect this transition into senior pet behavior. “A decrease in physical activity depends on the breed, size and genetics of the pet,” she said. “However, some older pets are still quite active in their senior years.”

In addition to a decrease in physical activity, older cats and dogs tend to develop more degenerative health problems. Brookside Barkery “Chronic degenerative disorders like heart and kidney disease are common in older pets, and so is cancer,” Eckman said. “In cats, kidney, heart and thyroid disease are the most common aging conditions. In dogs, different breeds are more prone to certain conditions. For example, some breeds are more likely to see a dramatic increase in cancers as they age.” A visit to the veterinarian every six months can help determine what is normal for your pet so that any changes in behavior or health can be detected early.

Aging cats and dogs are also prone to arthritis, dental disease, loss of sight and hearing, and a decrease in mobility. Just like humans, pets may need more assistance getting around and taking care of themselves. Despite this change in mobility and physical activity, it is important to keep your dog and cat active to slow the progression of joint pain and arthritis. In addition, a healthy diet that adequately nourishes your pet is also key in reducing your pet’s risk for obesity, which can also contribute to joint pain. “The single most important aspect in helping your pet stay as happy and healthy for as long as possible is maintaining a healthy weight throughout their lifetime,” Eckman said. “A healthy weight should be coupled with regular exercise and activity.”

The Barkery has everything you need to keep your older pet happy and healthy! Everything from all natural pet food, to dental care, supplements, joint treatments and more! Stop by either our Brookside or Lee’s Summit locations and pick up everything you need to keep your older pet feeling young.

*Thanks for the advice!

Brookside Barkery

What To Do If Your Pet Gets Hurt

There’s nothing worse than coming across an injured animal, whether it’s one that you’ve stumbled upon or your own pet.  Here at the Barkery, we know it’s important to be aware of what to do when you find yourself in a situation with an animal that is hurt. We’ve found an article that explains how to approach an injured animal, and what to do next.

Because injured pets could be in pain, scared, or confused, it is important to act appropriately to ensure they see a veterinarian and get medical help. Dr. Medora Pashmakova, clinical assistant professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM), offered some insight on what to do if your pet is injured.

“Pet owners should be careful not to be bitten by a pet, even one that has no record of biting anyone before. They may do so when injured,” she said. “Typically, this means immobilizing the animal until you’re able to get it to a veterinarian. You can also purchase a commercially made muzzle or fashion a homemade muzzle out of gauze or a leash to prevent the animal from biting while being transported to veterinarian’s care.”

Brookside BarkerySometimes pets can be in pain with no obvious or visible wounds. In this case, Pashmakova recommended looking for key signs of internal pain, such as abdominal pain. “Pets can be in pain when they show signs of guarding a particular area of the body to prevent anybody from touching that area. They may also avoid bearing weight on a limb,” she said. “Abdominal pain in particular can occasionally cause the animal to get in a praying stance position with the forelimbs down and the rear limbs up. Animals will also often vocalize when in pain, be reluctant to touch, have a fast heart rate or breathing rate, or they may hide from their owners. Cats are especially good at hiding signs of pain and often just become reclusive and detached.”

In emergency situations, such as when a pet is hit by a car, the animal may be seriously bleeding. In such critical situations, it is important to act fast to slow blood flow.

“Just like a person, a tourniquet can be applied to a proximal part of the limb in the case of a bleeding limb injury until blood has slowed down to a trickle,” Pashmakova said. “It’s important not to completely occlude blood flow so that the limb can preserve some blood supply. Applying external pressure is also often a good idea. A towel can be used to apply pressure over a bleeding site until the pet is able to be seen by a veterinarian. In cases where a bleeding vessel is clearly visible, the bleeding can be held off with fingers or another gentle but firm device, such as a hemostat, while the pet is transported.”

*Thank you for the tips!


Afraid to Trim Your Dog’s Nails?

Have you ever been cutting your dog’s nails and gotten too close to the nail bed? It can be scary because none of us want to hurt our dogs! Most dog lovers know that cutting canine nails is a tricky process. It can be hard to know where to stop trimming. As a result, some people may feel a little nervous or even avoid nail trimming, but proper nail care is essential for your dog’s comfort and even his health.

  • Brookside BarkeryFirst, determine if your dog’s nails need a trim by taking a look at the length. They should be fairly short and ideally they should not be touching the ground on a firm, flat surface.
  • If they are long, you can start by trimming bit by bit, only 1–2 millimeters at a time. Dog nail clippers should have a U-shaped blade on the top and bottom because it conforms to the shape of your dog’s nail and won’t squish the nail and cause discomfort when you cut. This is why it is important not to use human nail clippers. If you do not have dog nail clippers, Brookside Barkery and Bath has all of the tools you need to make this a painless and simple process.
  • If your dog’s nail profile is U-shaped when you make the first small cut, then it is still too long. For dogs with
    black nails, you can tell they are too long when it has an upside down U with a dark margin and lighter center. Continue clipping until you start seeing a small darker center surrounded by lighter nail.
  • Regardless of the tool you’re using, keep your dog happy and at ease during a nail clipping session by having good quality, natural treats on hand. Swing by the Brookside Barkery and Bath today to pick up a variety of healthy all natural treats for your pooch. When it comes to nail trimming, bribery is definitely allowed!

Following this simple routine every two to three weeks, you can assure your dog will be moving comfortably. Still too nervous to attempt cutting your dog’s nails? That is completely understandable. At Brookside Barkery and Bath we are happy to trim your pets’ nails during a scheduled grooming session with one of our expert groomers.

*Thanks to Modern Dog Magazine

Brookside Barkery and Bath

5 Tips for Better Leash Manners

Do you feel like you are water skiing every single time you try to take your dog on a walk?! We’ve all been there, and it is exhausting. Even if you have a small dog, it is embarrassing to be tied around a tree, tangled up with another dog, or heaven forbid, the leash comes lose and you are chasing your dog down the block! Be ready to impress your friends next time you are out and about with your dog after trying these 5 tips for better leash behavior.

  • Adjust Your Attitude– First, ask yourself: “What would I like him or her to do differently?” Instead of teaching a dog to stop pulling, think of it as teaching your dog how to walk nicely beside you.Brookside Barkery
  • Train Your Dog to Go When You Say So– One thing that can help is to train your dog to “go potty” on command. If your dog has already gone before the walk begins, he won’t feel the need to frantically pull and sniff on the walk.
  • Walk Your Dog the Way You Drive your Car– As the driver, you are the one in control. As pack animals, dogs love to play follow the leader. If your dog pulls, keep the leash loose, calmly pivot, and start going the opposite direction. In a happy voice say “heel” or “let’s go” to teach your dog to follow you.
  • It’s All About Rewards– One of the easiest ways to get your dog’s attention and teach him to walk properly on a leash is to reward him. The trick is to use very special treats at first. When your dog walks calmly beside you, or looks up at you, encourage this behavior with rewards.

Your dog will love our special treats from Brookside Barkery and Bath. We proudly offer a wide variety of healthy and natural treats that are sure to make this learning process a fun and rewarding one for your dog.

  • Use the Right Tools– If your dog has developed an engrained habit of pulling on walks, switch things up by trying a different type of leash or collar. Consider trying a front clip harness or a slip collar. At Brookside Barkery and Bath we offer a huge selection of collars and leashes sure to fit your pet’s own unique taste and style.

Just remember, it takes time, patience and practice to teach your dog good leash manners. So celebrate each step in the right direction -and walk over to visit us at Brookside Barkery and Bath today!

*special thanks to PetMD for these expert tips.


Brookside Barkery

What Does Your Body Language Say to Your Dog?

We know that we humans can be slow at responding to the non-verbal signals that our dogs may be sending us. However, your dog pays very close attention to every single move you make! Try this experiment to focus on the signals you’re sending your dog – intentional or not. This will help you identify the non-verbal cues your dog has grown accustom to responding to.

Barkery KCBe sure you and your dog are away from the normal hustle and bustle in your home. Go to a quiet room where there are no distractions.  Stand still and relaxed as you ask your dog to “sit.” The hardest part about this is making sure that no other body parts are moving, even tilting your head a little or raising your eyebrows can be seen very easily by your dog and may possibly act as a clue for them to sit. You can also sit down on the floor and, without moving, ask them to sit. Then, try leaving the room and asking your dog to sit (you can peek to see what they do)!

Then, ask your dog to sit the way you normally do. Move freely – tilt your head or raise your eyebrows the way you have always done. Now that you’re aware of your own behavior, you can try and determine a pattern as to the body language and non-verbal cues your dog has learned to respond to. You’ll probably find out that your dog pays just as much attention (or more!) to your body language as he pays attention to your voice!

After all that sitting, your pup needs a treat! Everything at the Barkery is 100% guaranteed all-natural, so be sure to stop by either our Brookside or Lee’s Summit locations and pick up some healthy rewards for them!

3 Tips for Owning an Indoor Cat

Although it’s safer for cats to stay indoors, it can be difficult for them to cope with being an indoor cat, particularly if they have a lot of energy or have previously spent time outside. That being said, there are tips that can make cohabitation easier for everyone involved when owning an indoor cat.  Here are three ways to keep indoor felines happy, healthy, active, and entertained.

Microchip your kitty.

If your cat doesn’t go outdoors, it probably doesn’t wear a collar. However, despite your best efforts, the more adventurous cat may still manage to escape. To make a happy reunion all the more likely, have your kitty outfitted with a microchip. The tiny—but critical—tech can be implanted during a routine visit to the vet, without anesthesia. (If you’re adopting from a shelter, it’s often included as part of the whole package.) It hurts only as much as a typical vaccination, lasts a lifetime, and can be scanned at a shelter or vet to reveal a unique ID number that—through a registered database—can connect kitty back to (a hugely relieved) you.

Set the stage for Cat TV.

Frankly, cats aren’t quite as street savvy as we are. Indoor cats have a significantly higher chance of being hurt or killed if they venture outside. However, they’re intrigued by motion and smell, so a securely screened window (aka Cat TV) can give them a taste of the outdoors and provide hours of entertainment for watching birds, squirrels, trees, cars, and pedestrians. (Don’t have a screen or need to shut the window for heat or the AC? Just pull aside the curtains or blinds; a closed window will do just fine.)

Think vertical.

Brookside BarkeryCats love climbing and chilling at high levels. You can set up deluxe shelves, walkways, and perches for your cat to climb on.  Also be mindful of how you arrange furniture, as you can create “steps” for your kitty to go safely from one item to another (say, from a low cabinet to a taller dresser), especially if one perch would otherwise be too tall to jump to without an intermediary. Brookside Barkery has plenty of towers and perches that cats love, including our very own store cat, Willow!

It’s not required for your cat to go outside for a happy lifestyle! Be sure to play with your feline regularly and keep them entertained as much as possible. Stop by either our Lee’s Summit or Brookside locations and check out our cat toys, towers and scratching posts! Making sure your cat gets the exercise and entertainment they need is the key to owning a happy and healthy indoor cat!

*Thanks for the tips on living with a kitty in the city!

Brookside Barkery

Keep Your Dog Safe in the Summer Heat!

Many people take advantage of the warm weather by making resolutions to get themselves and their pets in shape for summer. However, when participating in outdoor activities like walking or running during these high temperatures, extra precautions need to be taken to ensure your pet’s safety.

Dr. Mark Stickney, clinical associate professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, says that humans are not the only ones who need to be cautious when exercising during higher than average temperatures. “Animals do things they normally wouldn’t do to stay cool, which is an important thing to remember when outside,” Stickney said. “If they are all riled up and having a good time, they may forget how hot it is, so it is important to always monitor them.”

Anytime you are outdoors or doing something active during the summer, it is important for youBrookside Barkery and your pets to take plenty of breaks. Although you may be used to handling the heat and are aware when you need to stop and rest, your pet, especially if they have a thick coat, may not fare as well in the summer months. “Keep in mind that if you’re thirsty, your pet is most likely thirsty,” Stickney said. “Animals need plenty of access to fresh water. You can even try putting ice cubes in it to make it colder and more refreshing.”

However, the warm summer temperatures don’t mean you shouldn’t participate in outdoor activities with your pets. If you and your pet enjoy long walks to the neighborhood park, for example, just be sure that he has access to plenty of water throughout your trip. Bringing along a water bottle and bowl for him to drink from is always a good idea. “Also keep in mind that pavement can get very hot in the summer,” Stickney said. “If your dogs don’t have thick foot pads, they could develop burns on their feet. Letting them walk on the grass instead of the concrete can help keep their foot pads from blistering.”

Any summertime activity that involves the water is good to partake in with your pet. Getting adequate exercise, while also being able to cool off in the water, is a perfect outdoor activity. However, keep in mind that they will still need to have clean drinking water available, as well as a shady place to rest once out of the water. Swimming for a long time can be draining on a dog not used to that type of physical exertion. “If your pet does accidentally overdo it in the sun, there are signs you can watch out for,” Stickney said. “Panting, unresponsiveness, red whites of their eyes, and bright reddish gums can mean that your dog is overheated and needs a break.”

If you notice that your dog is beginning to exhibit any of these symptoms, stop activity immediately and allow them to get a drink and cool off indoors or in the shade. Overall, be smart and safe when going on outings with your pets during the warm summer months. Monitor your pets closely, and be prepared to step in at the first sign of heat stress. They may be enjoying your time together so much that they don’t realize how hot and tired they really are!

*Thanks for the tips!