No more waiting for their next walk !
Blog & News

February 23, 2014

Tails of Crate Escape, Lemon Balm as an Herbal Remedy, and C’Town Yappy Hour, 2/28!

As Ernie Sees It


2014 has been quite a year so far!  I can’t wait for salt free streets and green grass! And my blue ball.

Having said that, celebrating our 10th year has been beautiful and nostalgic. So many wonderful dogs and people have made us, that I have been trying to express gratitude…. which is a challenge. I am not clingy and refuse to be. I sometimes give multiple kisses in fast succession, to say hello, I love you, but I can’t do that for everyone. If you are all willing to give me a treat, I will show up, but my Mom will be right behind me, saying no,no,no!

Luckily, Snoopy taught me to type, so I can thank you myself, without all of the other stuff, or live appearances.

Later, Ernestine


Tails of Crate Escape, Raining Cats and Dogs/ Crate Escape too

368 Huron Ave, Cambridge, MA.  Where Crate Escape began 10 years ago. It’s quite possible that you haven’t visited our original store. Located in Huron Village, which, in itself, is charming and unique, our store radiates the village feeling. The name was changed to Crate Escape too after a major renovation in 2011.

Thinking about how  Crate Escape opened, grew and changed,  we realized that Brad and Stephanie have many of the characteristics and skills , including creativity and talent,  that have made us extra special in dog care and service. Both of them are super observant, aware of every inch of the 3 Crates and repair or replace everything in need, right away. As an intuitive businessman, Bradley is a also has basic construction skills, and does many of the day to day replacements and repairs; plus, he is a wonderful idea person. Brad and Steph scrutinize each situation to see if it is time for an upgrade. Stephanie has a retail background, and a beautiful sense of decor, which provides originality and character to the stores. Nikkilee, General Manager, joined the team 6 years ago, and has proven invaluable in our growth. She is an ‘over the top’ multitasker, and efficient, which gives staff new challenges weekly. Although upper management stays current on industry trends, the most important components of the business have been ‘the next right thing’ to do, or intuitive, as opposed to following. (components being, dog safety, exercise, socialization, cleanliness, customer service and doggone fun!)

This 10th year gives us a chance to pause, and realize where the business is and how we got here. Our pride is in what has grown to be premier dog care facilities in the Greater Boston area.  Huge thanks to our customers who trust us and keep us aware of their needs and situations.


ernie drawing from website1 Comment from Ernestine:  To those of you who aren’t into holistic, I recommend reading this next article anyway. It provides easy answers to some common issues.

Herbal Medicine for Your Dog

Lemon balm is the Herb of the Year for you and your dog.
By CJ Puotinen, Whole Dog Journal

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) is a dog-friendly plant with a distinctive lemon-mint fragrance and flavor, lemon balm is best known as a nervine, a calming herb that soothes and relaxes. It’s also a digestive aid that neutralizes gas in the stomach and intestines. Add its muscle-relaxing, deodorizing, disinfecting, and insect-repelling benefits, and you can see why lemon balm belongs in your garden, window box, or patio planter.

Native to the Middle East, lemon balm traveled through all of Europe. Charlemagne ordered his subjects to plant it, Benedictine monks put it in their monastery gardens, and Thomas Jefferson grew it at Monticello. Today the plant is grown commercially as an ingredient in cosmetics, skin care products, and furniture polish.

Lemon balm’s key constituents include volatile oils, tannins, flavonoids, terpenes, and eugenol. Its terpenes are relaxing, the tannins have antiviral effects, and eugenol calms muscle spasms, kills bacteria and has an analgesic (pain relieving)  effect. In recent years lemon balm has made headlines for its ability to treat cold sores and other breakouts caused by the herpes simplex virus and as a treatment for Alzheimer’s Disease.

Its strong performance in the Alzheimer’s studies and its safety make it a compelling candidate for a trial with senior dogs suffering from cognitive
dysfunction, or to reduce the depression and agitation that dogs with cognitive dysfunction can display.

People whose dogs’ flatulence drives them out of the room may especially appreciate lemon balm’s ability to reduce their dog’s gas. Long considered a “universal remedy,” lemon balm is an herb that can be used for almost any ailment but is perhaps most strongly indicated in  dogs with digestive problems, separation anxiety, canine sleep disorders, stress, and irritability. It is also an effective topical treatment for ringworm.

Easy to grow

Like all members of the mint family, lemon balm has square-shaped stems and spreads more through its roots than through seeds. Under the right conditions, it grows like a weed and often is one, taking over entire gardens. Its small white blossoms are so sweet that they attract bees, hence the plant’s scientific name. Melissa is Greek for honey bee. Lemon balm is easy to grow in full sun to partial shade. It doesn’t need fertilizer – in fact, fertilizing the plant reduces its medicinal benefits. Lemon balm is happiest in poor, sandy soil. Its seeds need several weeks of exposure to light and moisture before sprouting. Many nurseries sell lemon balm seedlings, and once plants are established, they care easily propagated by dividing the roots. Lemon balm is a thirsty plant, so water it during dry weather. However, too much rain or moisture can produce mildew, so good drainage is vital.

Unlike most herbs, lemon balm is best harvested in the afternoon, when its essential oils are strongest. For maximum yield, cut lemon balm before
flowers bloom. The more it’s trimmed, the more leaves it produces.Use the fresh herb. Finely mince or chop lemon balm leaves and add them to
your dog’s food at the rate of 1 teaspoon per 15 pounds of body weight. This is approximately 1 tablespoon for a dog weighing 45 to 50 pounds. Fresh minced lemon balm can also be used as a poultice or wound dressing. Mash leaves or pulverize them in a blender, apply to the affected area, and
hold in place with a bandage.

Lemon balm can be used straight from the garden to keep your dog smelling fresh. Simply pick a few stems, crush the leaves, and run them over your dog’s coat. In addition, lemon balm’s citronella like fragrance is said to repel mosquitoes and other insects. If you can convince your dog to chew on a lemon balm leaf, her breath will smell wonderful.

And, Don’t Forget!

Copy of ctown yappy hour15

Copy of ctown yappy hour6Copy of Copy of ctown yappy hour8






Top |

home | about | ernestine | services | rates | policies | photos | blog | contact | testimonials

Crate Escape logo
Crate Escape | 30 Brighton Street, Belmont MA 02478 | (617) 489-9005 | Fax: (617) 489-9002
Crate Escape Too | 368 Huron Ave, Cambridge MA 02138 | (617) 354-9009
Crate Escape | 200 Terminal Street, Charlestown MA 02129 | (617) 886-9004