A Boston pet boutique owner is making a difference in the local animal community, one purchase at a time
By Wendy Wollenberg
If necessity truly is the mother of all invention, then it’s fortunate for the Boston animal community that Brittany Bang had a hungry Bulldog on her hands. As a college student living on Beacon Street in 2001, Bang got a Bulldog named Audrey. She soon found it difficult to find pet products available to her in the city. Nine years later, in July 2010, Bang opened a one-stop shop for pet supplies and services with a passion for the local animal community. “I’ve lived my whole life in Boston,” Bang says. “I wanted to create a family-owned neighborhood pet store where people can stock up on the daily basics as well as find fun, unique products.”
Audrey’s Boston, a bright, friendly space located in the chic Newbury shopping district, features food, treats, toys, grooming products, gift items, and more for dogs, cats, small animals, and their guardians, all at a range of price points. “I have a commitment to keeping our prices affordable,” says Bang. “I look for quality and value when I choose our products and make sure they’re worth the investment for the consumer.”
The store also offers an array of services, including dog walking, cat sitting, same-day delivery, and automatic replenishment of food and other provisions. Again, these offerings came about through a personal need. Bang recalls working in the restaurant industry and needing dog walking for Audrey sporadically; however, she found that most dog walkers need a set schedule. Audrey’s offers no-appointment-needed dog walking, the only storefront in Boston to do so. Bang, her husband, Brad, and two part-time employees man the store as well as cover the services, making Audrey’s one efficiently run emporium.
But the real benefit for Bang is the work Audrey’s Boston does with local animal shelters and rescue groups. The store has a “middle table” where shoppers can find products that share in this mission, including toys, collars, books, and gift items. Bang donates a portion of proceeds from the sales of these items to local shelters and has so far raised more than $2,300. The table also showcases a photo of a dog that is in special need of a forever home. In addition, Bang has added a basket at the store where shoppers can donate items on local shelters’ wish lists. “The basket has been filling up so quickly that I’ve been making runs to the shelters about once a week,” she reports.
Audrey’s hosts regular adoption events with dogs and cats from the Animal Rescue League of Boston the last Saturday of every month. She’s had a phenomenal response from the community and even has customers who have adopted at past events come back to share their experience with prospective guardians. Bang also helps support the efforts of other animal organizations, including the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Massachusetts Vest-A-Dog, which raises funds to provide bullet-protective vests for all police dogs. “We try to do as much as we can for as many groups as possible,” Bang says.
Bang and her husband are the proud guardians of two rescued cats, Tess and Yogi, Kendall the Boxer, and Bella, a chinchilla that serves as the Audrey’s mascot. “I love chinchillas and hope that people might think twice about wearing fur after meeting her,” Bang says.
It’s been a whirlwind year for Bang and her much-loved neighborhood store. “People used to tell me that I had the coolest job when I worked with the Red Sox,” Bang says, referring to her past corporate life. “But I think that what I do now is way cooler.”
For more information about Audrey’s Boston, visit AudreysBoston.com.