Pampering Pets

by Stephen Hunt

For many of us, our pets — whether a cat, dog or something more exotic like a bird, rabbit or  reptile — are members of the family. Some pet owners make a priority of taking care of their beloved companions and often spoil them with treats, toys, or even make them their favorite food. 
As Frisco has continued to grow, more pet owners have come to the city, creating an opportunity for pet-centric businesses to cater to the wants and needs of pets and their owners. 
One such business is Bark N Fetch, a premium pet food and supply boutique that opened last year at 6959 Lebanon Road Suite 122, in the Shops at Starwood. 
 Heather Denton is Bark N Fetch’s owner. Her background is in corporate sales, but she has had a lifelong passion for dogs and said that she knew that one day she would own a pet-centric business. 
One of Denton’s own Golden Retrievers had major skin allergies and she tried everything — from allergy shots and pills to visiting a dog dermatologist — to help her pet. After doing research, she figured the culprit could be what she was feeding him. 
Realizing there were no businesses in Frisco that sold the type of dog food she needed, Denton resolved to fill that niche. During its year-plus in business, Bark N Fetch has done exactly that for local cat and dog owners. “I didn’t open this store because I wanted to be this super rich and famous person. I opened this store because there was a need for it,” Denton said. 
 
“Maybe you don’t have a specific type of ailment with your dog. You just don’t want to give them low-quality food and want a place that has everything. You can walk into the store and walk out with crates, beds, collars, order a (dog) tag. The only thing we can’t do is groom your dog (or administer) shots.”

 A Rare Breed‘

The most recent addition to the local pet-centric business scene is Pet Evolution, located at 2115 W. University Drive Suite 230. 
Pet Evolution, which opened earlier this year, takes a holistic approach to caring for pets inside and out regardless of breed, age, likes or dislikes. 
Besides offering food, treats and pet supplies for cats and dogs, the store also has full-service grooming and bathing, including a self-serve dog wash that is popular with families. Mobile nail trims are also offered at customers’ homes in the store’s van.

 “For us, it’s all about convenience, spending time, (avoiding) the mess in your home. We’ve got big tubs, shampoos, dryers, towels — everything you need to do it here quickly and efficiently,” said Neil Sheth, general manager of Pet Evolution. When customers are finished bathing or grooming their pets at the store, “You walk out, leave the mess and we clean it up.”
Another unique offering at Pet Evolution is cat grooming, including dreaded nail trims, which can be a harrowing experience for some pet owners. 
“We’re a rare breed where we do cat grooming as well, so if your cat’s hair is getting out of control, we can trim it down. Same thing with cat nails,” Sheth said. “We have a thing called the `space helmet,’” that is worn by the cat and helps makes the process easier. “It’s cool.”

 Going the Extra Mile 

Both Bark N Fetch and Pet Evolution want customers and their pets (the latter are always welcome inside either store) to feel like family. 
One way they accomplish this is to ask customers about their pets’ needs. Then they use their array of knowledge to answer any questions pet owners may have. 
“We love to know our customers,” Denton said. “We’re starting to know our customers and we’re willing to go above and beyond.” 
An example of going the extra mile occurred during the holiday season last year when a customer broke a hip and couldn’t move. Denton delivered her pet’s food (a service that Bark N Fetch offers) to help make life easier for the customer and her pet. 
Both businesses also make it a point to be active in the Frisco pet community, whether through hosting adoption events like Bark N Fetch did to commemorate the anniversary of its first year in business or working with local animal rescue groups. 
“I have four Golden Retrievers. They’re all rescues,” Denton said. “Rescue is very big to me.” 
While at Bark N Fetch, there is a good chance that customers will meet Bailey, Denton’s laid-back, 13-year-old Golden Retriever who enjoys serving as the store’s official greeter.

Stephen Hunt is a Frisco freelance writer who spoils rotten his Mini Shar-Pei, Ming Ming. 

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