Dawgdom caters to canines

When a beloved pet dies, it can be a saddening, mournful experience. For Sara Ellis, it was nothing short of life-changing.

After the loss of her dog, Jack, to bone cancer in 2007, Ellis decided to leave her corporate lifestyle and pay tribute by opening Dawgdom, a dog boutique on Broadway in Saratoga Springs.

It just came to me, said Ellis, a Manhattan native who has lived in Saratoga for the past 10 years.

She opened Dawgdom in March.

"I've lived here for about 10 years and have always wondered -- there are so many dogs and not a dog store, that I just wanted to offer stuff that you don't see everywhere, so I did."

Since Dawgdom's grand opening, the store has gotten a tremendous response from area dog-lovers. The store sells a wide variety of dog accessories, from standard items including leashes, bowls, collars and chew toys, to unique gifts such as aromatherapy, cake-like dog treats, and even a paint set made especially for art of a canine variety.

"There's a very large range [of products]," said Ellis. "You can come in here and buy a gift for your friend's dog for $4 if you want, or you can buy a collar for $10 if you want, or you can buy a collar for $60. We try to give a good range; we try to have stuff for the active dog, we try to have stuff for the 'foo-foo' dog, just mix it up so everyone can be pleased."

While Dawgdom provides numerous products from all over the country, approximately 25 percent of the products come directly from local vendors.

Ellis said she tries to support local vendors, and is planning to offer more locally oriented products in the future. Also, the store works in conjunction with other local pet businesses such as photographers and sitting services, as well as dog-centric events and festivals throughout the area.

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