Airedale Antics, started in St. Charles as Airedale Antiques, co-owner Sheri Phipps said at the store on Saturday, at 7316 Manchester Road in Maplewood.
She and her husband, Tony, were opening an antique furniture restoration shop on First Street in St. Charles and loved their Airedales, so they named it Airedale Antiques. They’d take the dogs to work and it would be first in the phone book she said. More people came to see the dogs than for furniture restoration.
They began carrying Airedale memorabilia — coffee cups and key chains — and people began asking for similar items for other unusual breeds, like Bernese Mountain Dogs, so they got into that. Then they started carrying all-natural treats, then all-natural food. Soon, in the two-story building, dog-related items filled the first floor and the antiques were pushed upstairs.
They got busier; when they had their first adoption event, for Midwest Doberman Rescue, more than 200 Dobermans showed up. Not long after that they moved to Maplewood, where they lived at the time. She said they did more business in Maplewood than they did in six months in St. Charles.
“We feel our responsibility is to educate people what good pet nutrition is, and to support all the pets that need homes, which is why we invite the rescues to come in,” Phipps said. “And we understand that this area is not a boutique area. This is not a boutique, this is a pet supply store. We are not poofy. This is not the place to come for poofy pet clothes.”
Airedale Antics has been nominated this year, for the first time, for the St. Louis Magazine A-List.