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Pet boutique Fideaux celebrates 25 years in St. Helena

Pet boutique Fideaux celebrates 25 years in St. Helena

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“Pet Dogs. Be Kind. Shop Local. Repeat.” For the team at “Fideaux, an outfitter for dogs and cats” in downtown St. Helena, it is a fitting mantra as they celebrate their 25th anniversary this month.

A mainstay in St. Helena since May 1996, Fideaux is the brainchild of two creative entrepreneurs Jennifer Blevans and Becky Yost.

The idea for this unique store came about when Jennifer and her two Labrador Retrievers, Sydney and Melbourne, moved from Southern California to the Napa Valley in 1995. Jennifer soon met Becky Yost and her standard poodle, Zoe. Looking for career changes, Jennifer and Becky noticed there were no retailers in the smaller Upvalley communities catering to either local pet owners or the estimated 2.5 million tourists that visit the wine country each year. While Becky returned to her law career in 1997, Jennifer continued to expand and grow the shop and in 2000. Erin Morris joined the team as Fideaux expanded to a second location in Healdsburg. Five years later, Jennifer was ready to step down from the busy pace of retail to enjoy her grandchildren. Erin confidently stepped into the role of owner, and continues to share her time between the two shops, the St. Helena location and the second shop on the square in Healdsburg.

The St. Helena store was originally located on Oak Avenue adjacent to the Napa Valley Coffee Roasting Company before moving to the Main Street location in 1998, tripling its size and adding a much greater variety of merchandise. Pet owners can find all the essentials from high quality cat and dog food to decorative collars, leashes, and stylish apparel for pets and their people. Of course, there are toys, treats, and balls in every shape and size to appeal to all breeds large and small. Their friendly dog (and cat) loving staff is always ready to help find the best fit in a harness or the perfect toy mouse for a pampered pet.

Tails are always wagging at Fideaux. Most weekdays customers will be greeted by a friendly “shop dog,” a tradition that began with the Melbourne and Zoe in 1996. Today’s working dogs include Olive, a sweet King Charles Cavalier; Huckleberry, a large and lovable St. Bernard; and Sophie, a very mellow Golden Retriever.

Over the past 25 years, Fideaux has been written up in several magazines including “Travel & Leisure,” “Town & Country,” and “Elle Décor Magazine," which described the shop as “The Barneys of New York in the dog and cat world.”

To commemorate their 25th anniversary and to say “thank you” to the local community for all of their support through the challenging year of the pandemic, Fideaux will be hosting a low-key celebration at their location at 1312 Main St. throughout the weekend of the sidewalk sales with special treats for two-legged and four-legged visitors. Please stop by Friday through Sunday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

As always, dogs are welcome.

Have you ever wondered why dogs enjoy the high-pitched shrieks that come from squeaky toys? Many experts say that dogs enjoy squeaky toys because they sound similar to prey that they instinctively want to hunt and kill. Many dog breeds were historically bred to chase and catch small animals. Certain small breeds such as the Yorkshire terrier were once used to get rid of rodents. Playing with squeaky toys allows your dog to return to its instinctual nature of hunting and chasing small prey. Research has shown that the sounds that squeaky toys make trigger the reward center in a dog’s brain. If your dog often plays with their squeaky toy right next to you, they may be using it to get your attention.

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