Dog lovers open pet supply store in Washington Depot


WASHINGTON – After spending the weekend in Litchfield County for 28 years and relocating to the city permanently several months ago, Electa Varnish saw the need for a dog supply business in the neighborhood.

“After being here for years, we realized that in this area you have to travel eight to 10 miles in either direction to get to a pet store,” said Varnish, who just opened Depot Dog, a store. of 1,000 square feet at 11 Titus Road in Washington Depot. The old company that occupied this location was the Valley Spirit Wellness Center, which moved to 1 Kirby Road.

The mission of Depot Dog is the welfare of pets, said Varnish. “We are committed to providing the best nutritional quality, basic necessities, products and information for cats and dogs at all stages of their lives. “

Depot Dog sells locally made products including dog shampoo, treats and scented candles.


“We have exclusive scents – ‘Puppy Kisses’, ‘Depot Dog’ and ‘Meow’ – all formulated to make pet homes smell wonderful,” said Varnish.

There are also felt pet caves.

“They have pillows inside and the animals crawl in them,” Varnish said. “They close behind the back, so if you wanted to travel with them, you unzip them and roll them up like a yoga mat.”

Varnish said she always wanted to own her own business. She previously worked in the garment industry for over 30 years. She decided to move from Brooklyn, NY to Washington full time due to the pandemic.

In addition to wanting to provide local residents with a convenient place to purchase pet supplies, Varnish said she has seen “a great influx” of people settling in the city.

“You have all these new families – and everyone has a pet. Everyone’s talking about their COVID dogs, ”Varnish said.

Another reason for Varnish’s motivation to open Depot Dog is her family’s “great love for animals”, she said. Varnish, her husband David Varnish, architect, and their 14-year-old daughter Adison have a rescue dog named Fisher, who is the dog featured in the Depot Dog image and logo.

“It’s a mix – part Australian Shepard and part Boxer,” Varnish said.

The family also have a black rescue cat named Salizar, which they found on the road.

“We are runners and we had gone out 15 years ago for a practice race in Woodbury, and we found it by the side of the road. He was so small and he was crying. We picked him up and took him to the vet, ”said Varnish, adding that the vet said his health was fine.

Depot Dog is teaming up with other local businesses to sponsor some upcoming dog related events, including “Strut to the music of SONORO», October 10. Profits go to Greenwoods Counseling and Referrals, Inc. in Litchfield.

Another event will be when Spotty Dog Rescue – Home, a non-profit organization in Waterbury, is bringing animals into the store on October 30 for adoption opportunities.

“They save dogs and cheer them on,” Varnish said. “The dogs accompany the families until they are placed.

Eventually, Varnish said she hoped to offer customers the option to purchase items through the store’s website.

Lon Rubackin, a Washington resident, said he and Merlin, his 6-year-old, 80-pound Bernese Mountain Dog, have already become regular customers of Depot Dog.

“It’s a lovely place that has all kinds of dog food and treats,” Rubackin said. “He likes to drag me to the depot, which is about a quarter of a mile from my house, so he can have some fun, smell all the smells and see what’s interesting.”

Rubackin added that Depot Dog “is very inviting”.

“Electa did a very good job of its inventory,” he said. “I have always been a dog and a cat person and she is always receptive to new ideas and tries new things and brings new products.”

Varnish said one of the best factors in wanting to open Depot Dog is being able to be a part of the Washington community.

“The community has embraced this business so much,” she said. “It was amazing.”

She added, “Even from other traders in town, there is a huge level of support for each other. People have reached out and really want you to be successful.

For more information visit depotdog.com or dial 860-619-0430.

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