ROYAL OAK – Locked in a tiny bedroom and neglected for years, 31 Persian cats taken from a pet hoarder are moving on to the next of their nine lives with help from an animal rescue group.
Chickpea, the tiniest of the now shaved purebreds, was cleaned up Thursday by Shannon Barrett, a groomer at Bingo Pet Salon, 108 W. Fourth St. Employees came in on their days off this week to help prepare 10 of the cats for adoption. New Beginnings Animal Rescue took a third of the 31 felines found cooped up in an 8-by-8 foot bedroom of a woman in the Grand Rapids area. They were filthy and malnourished; some never had human contact or breathed fresh air.
At one time the owner had shown some of the divas of the cat world known for their long hair, round faces and flat muzzles at cat shows. However, as her health deteriorated, so did her care for her once prized pets. The cats were put in a room, where they mated and multiplied. Occasional pie tins of kibble weren’t enough for all of them. Most weigh about 5 pounds when they should be 7-10 pounds. Their litter boxes were full and spilling over. Their long hair formed thick mats that kept their skin from getting air. Some developed sores. Some got respiratory infections in the room that reeked of urine and ammonia. Some had “goopy” eyes.
“It broke my heart to see these poor little things,” said NBAR spokesperson Lisa Hill, who drove to the western part of the state to pick up some of the cats from an overwhelmed shelter. The cats had already been treated by a veterinarian and were spayed and neutered. At Bingo Pet Salon, Barrett and Liz Manzella of Madison Heights, another volunteer groomer, bathed them with perfumed shampoo, trimmed their nails, and combed out remaining mats on their legs. Some of the cats looked like a lighter color after their baths.“Not one hissed or bit or anything,” Bingo spokesman Brian Lane said. “That surprised me. They are going through a big adjustment but they were all calm. They seemed to enjoy getting cleaned.” Manzella couldn’t resist one of the Persians she pampered. She adopted the cat, known as Lady Vader, on the spot.
“My girl has a mustache,” Manzella said, whipping out her smart phone to show a photo of Lady Vader and her long white whiskers curving down like a Fu Manchu. “Their sad story got me at first and then I fell in love with all of them.”
She isn’t alone. Four of the 10 Persians have been adopted since Monday. Hill is thrilled and hoping more prospective owners come forward.
“It’s the best part of my job,” Hill said. “I get to see love at first sight all the time.” Chickpea is one of the six still needing a home. Just shy of 4 pounds, the 5-year-old feline ran into a crate and cowered in the corner when it was her time for grooming.
“Just think, she lived her whole life in one room,” Hill said. “The conditions were terrible but it was all she knew. Then she is removed, poked, prodded, shaved and taken on a long car ride.” Barrett crawled in after Chickpea, swaddled her in a towel and reassuringly told her, “I know love bug. It’s no fun. It will be OK.” Hill agrees. She is fostering one of the cats and has seen a nice transformation in the last few days. The cat doesn’t shudder anymore when touched, or wonder what to do with a ball, and knows that a blanket is a nice place to nestle for a nap.
“I see this look of ‘Hey, this might not be bad,’ ” Hill said.To adopt or learn more about the rescued Persians, go to www.nbarmichigan.org or the Facebook page for New Beginnings Animal Rescue. To help the non-profit group, donations of food, kitty sweaters, or extra small dog sweaters can be dropped off at Bingo Pet Salon, 108 W. Fourth St., Royal Oak. Check out the video!
By Catherine Kavanaugh, Daily Tribune Staff Writer
Places: Bingo Pet Salon
As a pet lover, I truly believe in treating your pets the way you want to be treated, and at Bingo Pet Salon you have the opportunity to show your pet just how much you care. Owned by Royal Oak resident John Beasley, Bingo Pet Salon is located right in the center of Downtown Royal Oak at 108 w. Fourth Avenue. Bingo not only gives your pets the chance to be pampered, but its various services will give your pooch or cat a style all their own.
The new storefront will immediately catch your eye with the large glass window, allowing you to sneak a peep of the pooches playing and strutting their stuff inside the display area. Once inside, the decor is modern, featuring high exposed ceilings and deep cherry wood floors, giving the venue a chic lofty feel. Bingo also connects to the Royal Oak community by featuring colorful works from local artists on their walls.
As a full service spa salon, manager Kate Burton was able to quickly explain to us what makes Bingo different than traditional pet groomers. Offering a wide array of services to pamper your pet, from the groom spa to the "nailpawish", many of the services offered for pets mirror those of their human counterparts.
The drop off at Bingo is also enticing at this high-end pet salon. As opposed to having to think about what you are going to do while your pet is being serviced, being in the heart of Royal Oak has its perks. There is plenty to do from checking out a movie at Emagine Theater, to dining and even shopping right in walking distance from the salon.
For the owner on the go, Bingo also tends to your pet's needs outside of the salon offering Sit & Stay home boarding and pet sitting. Depending on the needs of your pet, a trained staff member will feed, take your pooch on a walk to the Dog Park, groom, play, complete minimal tasks around your home from taking out the trash to watering plants, and even send you photo updates on your pet via email or text all for a reasonable fee.
In addition to catering to your cat or dog, Bingo Pet Salon is also a proud sponsor of the Royal Oak Animal Shelter and New Beginnings Animal Rescue. Each week the Salon will foster adoptable pets in hopes that someone will find a good home for them, all you have to do is ask one of their friendly staff members for adoption details. There will also be a New Beginnings Giving Tree which serves as a drop off for pet food which then goes to families that need help with feeding their pets this time of year.
So in following Saturday's "Shop Local" theme, we suggest you check out the new Bingo Pet Salon and let them cater to you and your pet's needs. Your pet will feel safe and right at home as soon as they walk in.
Written by: Ebony Nicole Twitter @EbonyAfter5
Bingo pet salon bets on Royal Oak's animal-loving downtowners
A new pet salon has come to downtown Royal Oak, bringing with it a mod space that's a far cry from Lassie's groomer. Bingo Pet Salon, which opened last month on Fourth Street just off Main, brought with it a business plan to serve Royal Oak's downtown dwellers and commuters.
"That's kind of the nice thing about it... being able to come downtown, drop off your dog, see a movie, shop, run an errand," says Kate Burton, Bingo's general manager.
The other part of the business vision was to design an eye-catching spot that fit into downtown. The interior of the salon has an industrial lofty feel with high ceilings and lots of glass. At the front of the salon, a glass room that looks out on Fourth Street holds just coifed small dogs.
"People walking by can see them. They're our little models," Burton says. "It's definitely a more modern feel overall," she says. "Being downtown that's what we were going for."
Bingo, which is owned by Royal Oak resident Jon Beasley, opened last month and had a grand opening event with specialty dog treats and other pet goodies last week.
"This is his first time in this business," she says, "but he's been thinking about doing it for sometime, especially living downtown, knowing how many people hang out downtown with their dogs. This is a dog-friendly city in general."
Bingo Pet Salon is also connecting with the community by featuring works of local artists on its walls. Currently photographer Marco Mancinelli's pics of people and their pets are on display. And the salon is working with the Royal Oak animal shelter and New Beginnings, an animal rescue group, to foster and adopt homeless animals.
Already, she says, "more and more people are discovering us. We're getting busier and busier."
Royal Oak has always been known as one of the hot spots in the metro Detroit area, with a downtown business district full of a diverse mix of retail that offers a one-stop shopping experience for everyone. Visitors enjoy a mix of vintage shops, upscale boutiques, unique restaurants, an exciting night life, and now a place to take your pets to get pampered and cleaned.
Bingo Pet Salon, located at 108 W. Fourth Ave. between Main Street and Washington, is the newest reason to take a stroll through the streets of downtown Royal Oak and enjoy all that the city has to offer. Owner Jon Beasley’s goal is to “create an upscale salon environment in Royal Oak for pets so that they return to their owners pampered and relaxed.”
The services Bingo currently offers for dogs include full grooming spa packages and additional services like nail pawlish, medicated soaks, teeth brushing, and flea treatments. According to Kate Burton, general manager, Bingo is in the process of adding a cat groomer who will work on selected days to extend the same spa services to felines. Bingo will also be adding convenience services such as dog walking and a pick up and drop off program in the near future to tailor to the busy professional. Bingo also has several projects planned to contribute to the local community. One of the ways that Bingo gives back is to work with the Royal Oak Animal Shelter on a regular basis to help with pet adoptions.
Bingo will be hosting adoptable cats and dogs, grooming them and letting them strut their stuff in the show window so that pedestrians passing by can check them out and inquire about adoptions. The salon is also looking to showcase local artist on their walls and products for pets from local designers.
Bingo is currently open Tuesday through Sunday with extended hours to allow for late pick-ups. The Bingo staff, which along with Beasley and Burton includes head groomer Liz Manzella and Manager Laura Mico, will be hosting a ceremonial grand opening on Saturday, Nov. 5. The salon staff will be available from noon until 6 p.m. for a meet and greet, service cider and donuts from Blake’s Cider Mill for patrons, and special dog treats from Three Dog Bakery.