Animalerie Cowansville, 23 Years of Serving Pet Lovers
By Manfried Helmuth Starhemberg
In June of last year, Melanie Bellavance purchased the then 22 year old "Animalerie Cowansville". Little has changed since the change of ownership, the four full-time and four part-time employees remained and business is brisk. The only unhappy creature in the store was the pooch above who had his nails clipped and was not exactly thrilled with that treatment.
This is an amazing place and a mecca for animal lovers. 185 species of fish swim in 62 tanks and just the thought of cleaning all these tanks and feeding the fish is daunting.There are 20 species of birds from $ 12.- to an" African Grey" parrot which is for sale for $ 2,000.- Assistant manager Pierre Champagne who loves his job and the animals under his care explained that this particular parrot as an adult, will have about the same "intelligence" as a three year old human child. "This is the great talking parrot", a rare bird than can possibly last longer than his owner or their immediate heir.
Pierre loves his fishes and his reptiles. He carefully took a Boa from her cage and demonstrated how to handle the great snake which can become as long as six feet. In the next terrarium he showed a Python which tried to wrap itself around his arm. "Just do not pat their head" he explained, "all their senses are concentrated there and they do not want their heads to be touched".
How is the business in other reptiles? "Not good any more", there was a great craze about geccos and lizards a couple of years ago but it has died up somewhat. People's lifes change and they suddenly feel that a cat or a dog would be more appropriate".There are always puppies here and on special display was a Bernese mountain dog, a georgeous male with rich lustrous coloring.
The store sells every imaginable variety of grooming products, cages, leashes, flea powders, dog and cat shampoos and even the winter garment for the tiny pooch who does not wish to walk in the snow. Right now there were no cats but they will be coming soon.
Pierre Champagne tells that his store only buys from known and established family breeders, many of whom they have been dealing with since 1988. "We guarantee our animals, that is very very rare in this business. And to be able to do so, we must know all about the environment it was bred in and we like to have accurate birthdays etc. so that a veterinarian can deal with an animal in an informed manner". The "Animalerie" also has Dr. Marie-ClaudeBruchu, a Farnham veterinary on call in case there is a pet emergency at the store.
Four of my cats have come from this establishment and I am happy to say that if there would have been some cats on display today, I could have possibly been persuaded to add one to my herd. But having been forewarned about a possible strong dialogue with my lovely Nancy, I did not get into temptation. No cats, safe marriage. But a lovely store for anyone who cherishes animals.