Notes From the Janery Studio

  • We've gone country . . . where they really put the "neigh" in neighbor!

    Why hello there! It’s been one month since our family moved from the Washington, DC suburbs to 5 acres in the Shenandoah Valley. We’ve gained fresh air, wide open spaces, and wildlife in our yard. Some expected, some . . . not so much.

    One recent morning around 6 am, I buckled our daughter into her car seat, said goodbye to her and my husband, and headed back into the house to warm up. I was pouring a cup of coffee when I heard my husband open the door and yell:

    “Jane, I need your help. There’s a horse in our front yard.”

    Yes, you read that right.

    I ran outside in my robe and slippers, and sure enough, there was a large shadow of a horse right there next to our bedroom window. I’ve had a lot of experiences catching dogs - and even some cats - on the streets, but never a horse.

    Nevertheless, my husband said “I’ll go tell the neighbors” and I followed with “Ok, I’ll try to get the horse home.” I walked towards the horse in the dark, and started waving my arms saying “go home, go home!”

    As he picked up speed and trotted towards the house across the street, I jogged after him, talking to him the whole way. When we arrived at his fence, I slowly approached, letting him sniff me before I laid a hand on his neck. He bent his head down and gently snuffled my head and neck with his velvet nose.

    We spent a few minutes of quality time together before his mom came out with my husband, bewildered by the stranger knocking on her door in the dark of early morning.

    Unfortunately, not every morning at our new home is beginning with velvety horse snuffles - but at least it happened once - and I couldn’t say that about our old home in town!Janery Horse in Front Yard

     

    Tags: Pet Stories

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  • How Amber the Standard Poodle Found our Family

    August 30th marked 4 years since we adopted Amber, our Standard Poodle.  In honor of her anniversary, here’s the story of how she found us.

    When we learned that Amber needed a home, most people thought we were crazy to even consider adopting her.  I was 5 months pregnant with our first child, and we were spending every weekend (and then some) out of town, caring for my mom who was in the end stages of her battle with bone cancer. I was still working and traveling for my corporate job while attempting to keep Janery afloat despite the upheaval in our lives.

    But Ryan and I aren’t like other people, and we trusted our guts.  Ryan grew up with Standard Poodles, and when he met me and my four pets, his only request was that our next dog be a Poodle. I thought they were fancy and too serious, but his family’s poodles won me over quickly.  

    Janery Charlie Cushion How Amber Joined Our Family

    When we lost Charlie in December 2013, she left a hole in all our hearts - and Merlin was extremely lonely.  For the first time in his 12 years, Merlin showed signs of separation anxiety. We’d arrive home to find our usually angelic Merlin frantic, panting, shaking, and whining.  He even ate through a wooden baby gate twice.

    Nearby Poodle rescues wouldn’t adopt to families with kids under 5 or babies on the way.  When Ryan’s mom heard from her poodle breeder that a sweet, 1-year-old poodle puppy had been returned by the man who bought her, we were intrigued.

    We didn’t really want to deal with a young puppy – the housebreaking, the waking up at all hours, etc.  And my rescue-prone heart was already aching for this sweet girl who’d been “returned” after only a year.  

    Janery Charlie Cushion How Amber Joined Our Family

    When we took Merlin to meet Amber she immediately melted my heart.  She was fearful but sweet, and the more we learned of her story, the more I felt that we should adopt her.  Amber had been born to an amateur breeder who was unable to sell her. She was then transported to the breeder we met – in the trunk of a car.

    Then a man bought her, and called the breeder all the time, complaining about the puppy.  “I didn’t know I’d have to walk her.” “Dog food costs $30 a bag!”  “I have white carpets.”  

    I try not to judge, but I honestly can not understand this mindset.  To this day, we don’t understand why that man bought a puppy, and we wonder just how he treated her.  From the day we brought her home, she was well behaved, house trained, and eager to please - but was terrified (to the point of running in fear) when people reached for her collar.

    Janery Charlie Cushion How Amber Joined Our Family

    Despite her fearful nature, Amber fit in perfectly with our family.  She was successfully off-leash trained in three short weeks. She and Merlin hit it off, playing and wrestling and making ridiculous noises in no time at all.  Through the rest of my pregnancy, she was by my side, and we enjoyed daily 2-mile walks that kept her energy controlled and my health intact.

    Janery Charlie Cushion How Amber Joined Our Family

    When our daughter was born, Amber immediately kicked into “nanny mode.”  We were careful to always watch their interactions because you can never totally trust any dog and a baby, but Amber was interested and gentle.  She could often be found sleeping next to the crib, keeping an eye on her baby. Three years later, they’re the best of friends, and it’s clear that Amber was perfect for a family dog.

    Janery Charlie Cushion How Amber Joined Our Family

    She loves to go hiking - a “must” in my world - and is at her most well-behaved when she’s off leash on the trail with me.  I didn’t train her to do this, so I’m guessing she just likes to work.

    She has her quirks and has had some very unexpected and expensive medical issues, but four years later we have no regrets.  We couldn’t have found a better dog to join our family just as we added children to the mix.

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  • Welcome Forgotten Felines of Culpeper To Cozy For a Cause!

    “All Cats Deserve Love” and so do the people who love them.

    Janery Cozy for a Cause Forgotten Felines of Culpeper

    Welcome Forgotten Felines of Culpeper to the Cozy family!

    Janery Cozy for a Cause Forgotten Felines of Culpeper

    Forgotten Felines of Culpeper has a mission statement and a passion for the cats of Northern Virginia that will draw you in from the start:

    ALL cats deserve love.
    ALL cats deserve a good home.
    ALL cats deserve to be treated with respect and given care.

    Our cat, Aretha, is a rescue with - shall we say - personality? But we love her just the way she is, even when she sheds all over my favorite chair.

    That’s why we were captivated by Lynn and her team, because we too believe every pet deserves a cozy place to land - especially the pets with a tough exterior who are just waiting for the right family.

    What makes Forgotten Felines of Culpeper different is that they rescue, rehabilitate and socialize community cats - the toughest of the tough, because they had to be just to survive. Often these kitties are written off as too difficult to rescue, but not for Forgotten Felines.

    We think that dedication deserves a treat - don’t you?  Enter code COZYFFC in the discount box at checkout and 10% of your purchase will go directly to this worthy cause. It’s that simple!

    What is Cozy for a Cause?

    All of the Janery four-legged interns have been rescues, which means as a company, we have a soft spot for the humans who help them. We created Cozy for a Cause as a way to give back to organizations that give homeless animals a “paw up”.

    How do you help? By shopping with a Cozy Code that supports your favorite rescue organization and we give them 10% of your purchase value. You can learn more about Cozy for a Cause here.

    Want to see your favorite rescue organization supported by Cozy for a Cause? We do, too! Pop over to Instagram or Facebook and leave us their contact information or Email Us and we’ll reach out. It’s as easy as a walk in the park with a well-behaved pup. ;)

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  • Meet the Model: Kiara the Mini Goldendoodle

    When I spotted Kiara on Instagram, I just knew that she’d be a fun and fabulous Janery brand ambassador. Her colorful, abstract photos and cool Miami vibe make me all kinds of happy, and I bet you’ll love them too.

    The adorable mop-topped pup was the real star for me, though. Kiara’s beautiful, apricot curls and her sweet smile are irresistible.  

    Janery Charlie Cushion Ginkgo Kiara Mini Goldendoodle

    Knowing there had to be some great stories behind this photogenic Doodle, we asked Kiara’s mom to do a little interview with us:

    How old is Kiara?

    Kiara turns 2 on November 16th.

    What was the inspiration for Kiara’s name?

    I love the movie The Lion King. It was my favorite Disney movie growing up. In the second movie, Simba's Pride, Simba and Nala have a baby girl named Kiara. I always thought that name was so beautiful and knew I wanted to name my first female dog this.

    How did Kiara join your family?

    My husband and I thought long and hard about the responsibilities of owning a pet. I was the one that really pushed for a dog since I work from home most of the time and really wanted a companion. I'm allergic to dogs that shed so it had to be a hypoallergenic breed. My husband wanted an athletic dog. Once we met our friend's charming and friendly goldendoodle we knew this was the dog breed for us! We still researched the breed and looked for reputable breeders for months before we decided a mini goldendoodle would be a great fit.

    What are some of Kiara’s funniest habits?

    Kiara is the queen of fetch. We were visiting my parents this summer (Kiara's grandpawrents) and they bought some new tennis balls for her to play with. If Kiara has easy access to tennis balls she will want to play fetch with you. 24/7. During dinner, she'd plop a tennis ball in my dad's lap. Then my mom's lap... and on and on it went.

    She is also a champion swimmer. Her favorite thing in all the world is playing fetch at the beach, in a river, or a swimming pool!

    The one thing Kiara can't do is go through a dog door.

    Janery Charlie Cushion Ginkgo Kiara Mini Goldendoodle
    What’s Kiara’s sleeping style?  Is she a curler-upper, a stretcher-outer, or a flop-down-anywhere sort of pet?

    During the day Kiara loves curling up like a little fox on her Janery pet bed. At night she loves sleeping on our bed stretched out as far as possible giving us less room. Thanks Kiara.

    What kind of treats does Kiara go crazy for?

    Her favorite treats are definitely bully sticks. I don't let her eat a whole one at one time. She knows this now so when she thinks I'm not looking she'll run into the bedroom and bury it beneath our pillows.

    How has Kiara changed your life/your family’s life for the better?

    Kiara brings so much light and love to our little family. She has such a positive energy and loves unconditionally. She is a constant reminder that these are qualities we all need to strive for.

    Do you have other pets?

    Just Kiara!

    What has been your biggest challenge with Kiara?

    We picked up Kiara when she was an 8-week old puppy so as to be expected we dealt with sleepless nights and the potty training phase. It has been so fun to watch Kiara mature and she is a very easy dog to take care of. We just need to make sure we give her proper exercise during the day.  Kiara needs to play fetch and run around for at least a half hour each day and I am committed to giving her proper exercise.

    If you could give prospective or new pet owners one piece of advice, what would it be?

    Have patience! We expected to have a few sleepless nights and accidents during potty training, and that is to be expected with any new puppy. This phase only lasts for a few months though. Once your dog gets older and learns your routine things get much easier. I'd also strongly suggest researching breeds you want and find one that best fits your lifestyle.

    You can follow Kiara and all of her adventures on Instagram. I can’t wait to see where she ends up next!

    Kiara is a Mini Golden Doodle. She is pictured here on our Medium sized Charlie Cushion in Yellow Gingko.  All dogs - and Doodles - are different, so be sure to check out our size guide.

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  • Shed Happens: 10 Ways to Fight Pet Fur

    You've bought the fabulous pet bed to protect your furniture.  You've made sure they have the best food to keep their coat shiny and healthy.  But let's face it - shed happens.  So how do you keep your furniture pet hair free?

    I’ve had up to 5 pets at a time in my life, and loved them all dearly - but their hair? Not so much!  While I've come to understand my love of animals means that I'll never have a fur-free home, I’ve also come to know a thing or two about easy fur removal. Here are a few of my favorite ways to keep the shedding to a minimum and to keep my furniture looking (almost) showroom new.  (Now if I only I could stop myself from spilling red wine and coffee ;)

    Janery 10 Ways to Easily Fight Pet Fur

    10 Simple Fur Fighting Tips

    1. Use a Rubber Glove to Remove Fur Easily

    I discovered this tip when my sweet old man cat Doctor enjoyed curling up in my favorite relaxation spot. It's as easy as putting on the rubber glove and smoothing your hand over the furniture in one direction until the fur balls up and then tossing! This method has worked better for me than a dozen store-bought tools - even for my cat Aretha’s fuzzy black fur.

    2. Try an Upholstery Brush

    Much like my rubber glove, a good upholstery brush will remove pet hair quickly from sofas and side chairs.  You can usually find one at any home or big box store.

    3. Give Your Pets a Haircut

    The first time I shaved the fur off my shepherd mix Merlin, my veterinary friends raised an eyebrow or two.  But then they tried it with their dogs and cats, and discovered I was on to something. This reduction in hair can make a huge difference, even with dogs and cats with only medium-length hair.  As a bonus, it keeps pets cooler in the summer as well.

    4. Groom and Brush Your Pet Regularly

    A clean pet is a low-shedding pet!  Whether you do it at home or hire a groomer - it doesn't matter!  A regular bath and brushing can significantly reduce pet hair and dander.  I like to bathe our pets in the shower using a simple handheld attachment for easy bathing. I have this one but any decent handheld sprayer will do.

    5. Invest in a high-quality bagged vacuum

    Investing in a high-quality bagged, not bagless, vacuum is great for pet hair but also for trapping other dust and allergens.  Having a closed HEPA filter system will ensure that pet fur, dander and other dust and debris are closed and easily disposed of without putting them back into the air.  This is a must for people with allergies. (No, really.  Our friend with life-threatening allergies just invested in a Miele and says it was literally life-changing.)

    6. Keep Up with Pet Fur by Using a Robotic Vacuum

    Want to stay on top of the pet fur on a daily basis? Try a robotic vacuum.  It will start and stop at the same time every day and keep fur and dander to a minimum with little effort! We’re currently shopping for a new one, and eyeing this Wirecutter article for good, detailed, and unbiased reviews.

    7. Protect Your Furniture In Style

    Your cat (or dog) probably has a favorite spot on the furniture, and protecting that spot can help grab the fur before it makes itself at home.  Use a fabulous bed or faux fur throw blanket to avoid a decorating style that can best be described as “disheveled chic.” (Might we suggest our Catnip Cuddler ?)

    8. Trap Airborne Fur on Fan Blades with a Pillowcase

    When’s the last time you checked your ceiling fan?  Fur and dander magically travel through the air, collecting - shockingly fast, if you ask me - on things like your ceiling fan. To quickly clean ceiling fan blades, simply wrap them in an old pillowcase and pull the dust away. The dust and dander will be trapped in the pillowcase, which you can wash and reuse over and over for cleaning.

    9. Invest in Regular Steam Cleaning

    If you have wall-to-wall carpet, make sure you steam clean regularly. Invest in a high-quality home steam vac, but also have carpets professionally steam cleaned at least once per year.

    10. Change Your HVAC Filter Regularly

    We change ours every two months and use an allergy-trapping HEPA filter from a big box store.  Keep in mind that Spring and Fall are the two biggest shedding seasons so you’ll want to change it more often then.

    It might take a little effort, but by being proactive you can keep your furniture from becoming fur-niture.

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  • What Is Ethical Manufacturing and Why Should I Care?

    Find out why ethical manufacturing is good for business—and for you.

    Janery What Is Ethical Manufacturing and Why Should I Care?

    From the first day I opened Janery’s virtual doors, I was committed to creating sophisticated pet beds with an unapologetic commitment to quality. Some of this quality you can see and feel—the double-stitched seams, the deep-dyed patterns, the channel-sewn cushion, the impressive waterproof liner—and some of this quality is inherent in the ethical manufacturing, which includes the quality of life for the people who help pull it all together.

    I’ve written about how to be an ethical consumer, and I’ve shared some of my favorite ethical businesses with you. But what does “ethical manufacturing” really mean?

    Not all ethical manufacturing occurs in America, and not all American manufacturing is ethical.

    Picturing unethical manufacturing is unfortunately easy to do. We’ve all seen the pictures in the media of the sweatshops in foreign countries. It might surprise you, however, to learn that “American-made” isn’t a guarantee of ethical manufacturing, and popular stores, like Los-Angeles-based, fashion giant Forever21, have a long history of exploiting workers and state law. As recently as last fall, companies were found paying as little as $4/hour to workers who put in 11-hour days.

    Conversely, not all overseas factories are unethical. Companies like Cambodia-based Tonlé focus on improved quality of life and safety for their workforce. Per Tonlé’s website:

    “We're a zero waste, ethical fashion brand on a big mission, to reduce waste generated by larger factories and change the way business is done in the fashion industry. Our process starts with scrap waste sourced from mass clothing manufacturers. Using every last thread, we create handmade clothing and accessories signed by their Cambodian makers. Our family of employees is made up of individuals with spirit, drive and dreams. Together, we’ve built a supportive environment where everyone expresses themselves freely, learns new skills, and gains confidence in what they do. We believe style is more than what you wear – it’s what you choose to be a part of.”

    Everlane is another example. Their tagline, “Modern Basics, Radical Transparency” makes it easy to see where their priorities lay. I am so inspired by their transparency and their mission to improve the lives of the people who make the products they sell. They have factories from LA to Vietnam, spread across four continents. The best part? They encourage you to #KnowYourFactories, and in each product listing, you can click a link to see the actual factory where that product was produced.  

    On a global scale, ethical manufacturing focuses on the good health, safety, and fair compensation of the workforce. These best practices often include a commitment to minimizing waste, thorough product testing, and proper labeling. When you can source your favorite products ethically, you know you’re voting for companies that respect the time, energy, and talent that goes into each and every product. Wouldn’t this be great if it were the norm - instead of the exception?

    Yes, ethical manufacturing will always cost more than sweatshop labor, because it reflects the true value of what you are purchasing. It’s a small investment to ensure the best dog beds and the best cat beds on the market.

    Janery What Is Ethical Manufacturing and Why Should I Care?

    What does ethical manufacturing mean to us at Janery?

    When I bring in more hands to work on our luxury pet beds, I consider several factors before placing an order with a sewing factory:

    • Employees of all levels are treated with respect.
    • Employees are paid a fair, legal wage - and ideally, a living wage.
    • Employees work reasonable hours and are working at-will:  no bonded labor, no underage employment, the doors are unlocked, and they are free to leave at any time.
    • A safe work environment where repairs are made and safety equipment is available.
    • Ideally, all employees receive benefits and healthcare - though our country has a ways to go with this one.

    Because of these benchmarks, I’ve been able to form amazing partnerships with manufacturers across the country, from Michigan to North Carolina and Maine.

    I sleep better at night knowing we aren’t cutting corners—on style, on comfort, or on human rights, and you can rest easy knowing that your pup’s favorite waterproof dog bed has both chic, effortless style—and a higher purpose.

    Explore the Janery product line and feel the Janery difference.

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