When I arrive at Karen Lynch’s Style Unleashed Pet Boutique and Grooming Salon in Barrington, Bearded Collie Benny is waiting for his ride back to his beachfront home. If his slobbery smile and wagging tail has anything to say about the service, it’s definitely four paws up. With Style Unleashed’s one-on-one dog and cat treatments, pets get all of the individual attention of a proper pampering, from baths to blowouts, with each service marked by Lynch’s signature TLC and a welcome into her extended family of domesticated customers.
A lifelong animal lover who dreamed of opening her own specialty store in her hometown, Style Unleashed has been a pure passion project for Lynch from the very start. With the constant “parade of puppies” in and out of the boutique, Lynch says the furry family is constantly growing with new generations of pets and pet owners alike. “These are my kids,” says Lynch of her canine and feline clientele, whose photos cover the walls and their Facebook page.
Style Unleashed goes all out with their treatments, offering specialized services and all sorts of pet-approved add-ons. Is someone feeling scratchy? Book an appointment for a soothing oatmeal bath. Got skunked? There’s a bath for that too. Bang trims and face scrubs will keep your other half looking tip-top, and don’t forget the toes. After a snowy winter, it’s important to get pooches’ paws back in top shape.
Style Unleashed’s puppy ‘pedicure,’ a specially formulated bubble bath that helps heal dry, cracked paws, seems the ultimate in doggy delights. A fellow Springer Spaniel lover, Pat Ryan has over 25 years grooming experience and for her it’s all about keeping the animals happy and healthy. Just don’t forget a final spritz of cologne... you never know who Fido might run into on the way out.
The royal treatment doesn’t stop there. The boutique’s collection of dreamy velvet beds, imported Italian charm collars and comfy-chic carrier bags would top any pet (or pet owner’s) wish list. Lynch says puppy parents and even puppy grandparents often stop by when they want to spoil their special someone. “Even when people are cutting back on themselves, they are still pampering their pets,” says Lynch, whose own pups are certainly no exception to the rule. Ten-year-old chocolate lab Jackson Browne and six-year-old Beagle Hannah Montana (named by her other little ones) frequently join her at the “office,” a flexibility that Lynch says makes her job the greatest of all.