Tell us about Creature Comforts & Pawsitively Marblehead. Creature Comforts & Pawsitively Marblehead (CCPAWS) are businesses that are centered around your pets! Creature Comforts is our pet service side of the business, which includes our doggy daycare (and adorable dog buses!), dog walking and in-home pet care services – where we’ve cared for everything from cats to bearded dragons to chickens! 

Pawsitively Marblehead is our boutique shop, located on Atlantic Ave, that features toys, accessories, and gifts for the pets and pet lovers in your life! We focus on carrying quality, local brands that you wouldn’t typically find in larger chain pet stores and we love collaborating with other local businesses to create unique pet products.

Both businesses were started by Brooks and Ned Williams over 20 years ago, and James and I happily took over the reins (or leashes in this case!) from them in 2019. As an employee of theirs for 7 years before this transition, I knew many aspects of the business already, but it has certainly been quite a learning experience to be on the owner’s side of things now. We love working directly with the animals we take care of, as well as with our customers and clients to figure out the best products to help enrich the lives of their pets…and getting to drive a dog bus now and then isn’t a bad way to spend the day either! 

What is the best piece of business advice you ever received? The most important piece of business knowledge that I’ve received is how important it is to have reliable staff – they truly are the core of our business and we wouldn’t be able to do what we did without them. When dealing with people’s pets, it really is like dealing with a member of their family, so being able to trust and rely on our staff is critical. This was especially important when James and I welcomed our son Everett last year – we relied heavily on our manager Amy and the rest of our staff to hold down the fort as we adapted to life as first time parents. We are so thankful for our awesome team and their never-ending enthusiasm for the animals we care for!

What is your favorite spot in Marblehead? James and I can both say hands down that our favorite spot in Marblehead is Chandler Hovey Park. We just love everything about the lighthouse, and actually have quite the collection of different photos, paintings, and trinkets of it around our house … so much so, that we often joke that we live in the Marblehead Museum! I grew up sailing from Marblehead along the Maine coast and have always appreciated how different and unique our lighthouse is compared to the traditional white lighthouses you see in most places.

What is something people would be surprised to learn about you? You may already know that prior to owning CCPAWS, I worked at the New England Aquarium for 10 years in both the Rescue & Rehab Department and the Marine Mammal Training Department, but what you may not know is that part of my job in the Rescue Department was driving an ambulance (yes, an actual medical ambulance!) that we had outfitted to respond to animals including sea turtles, seals, and stranded dolphins and whales. And I have to say, driving a dog bus is actually easier…go figure!

For More Information:

Creature Comforts & Pawsitively Marblehead (CCPAWS)

Erin & James McCarthy 

52B Atlantic Ave, Marblehead


Meet Hound Around, LLC: An Interview with Hannah Alvarez Dobrusin

Meet Hound Around, LLC: An Interview with Hannah Alvarez Dobrusin

Tell us about your Hound Around, LLC.  Hound Around, LLC provides an assortment of things for your dog. We offer in-home overnight pet care, daily walks as needed, and our Hound Crew Doggy Day Trips, which are weekday hikes at various locations on the North Shore. Your dog will have the opportunity to make friends, learn to walk in a cohesive group, and achieve excellent health with good exercise. We are happy to also announce the newest addition to our business, our Hound Around Doggy Bags which are a monthly subscription bag that include a variety of treats, toys and so much more.

What made you decide to start your business? We love dogs! When we were discussing our business, I was completing my undergraduate degree in Business Administration at Salem State University and just walking dogs on the side, and my boyfriend, and now co-owner of Hound Around LLC, was working as a landscaper. We decided to create a business where we could live a healthy lifestyle, do what we enjoy doing most, and provide Doggy Day Trips for our beloved dogs on the North Shore.

What do you love most about Marblehead? I have been blessed to grow up in Marblehead, and I love the peace of the ocean and my close nurturing community. I started out as a babysitter and a dog walker for many families growing up, and so they know me, and my family. This is a solid foundation in which to start a business, I have the respect, kindness and word of mouth from those that know me well. 

What hobbies and interests do you have? I enjoy scrapbooking, networking and problem solving. I love sunshine and beaches. I love traveling; I have had the good fortune to see and learn about Italy, Ireland, Hawaii, Arizona, Virginia, a twenty-day road trip from Northern CA to Southern CA, and Israel. I still have Iceland on the list for my next adventure!

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