Rumford Pet: It’s worth the wag


If you’re a Rhode Island pet owner, chances are you’ve crossed paths with Rumford Pet Express in some way—maybe without even realizing it. Now with nine store locations, you’re likely to see their uniquely familiar magenta and blue signage in your neighborhood.

But, even if you’ve never set foot inside one of their retail locations, your dog may have enjoyed a leash-free romp at one of the dog parks Rumford Pet funds and maintains. Or maybe you’re the proud paw-parent of one of the thousands of animals they have connected with loving families through their generous support of local animal shelters and sponsored adoption events.

“Every animal deserves to live its best life. Rumford Pet has a longstanding commitment to creating a better world for pets and those who love and need them,” Michael Baker, fourth-generation owner of the family business, explains.

Carrying on that legacy is the heart of the next chapter in the already rich history of Rumford Pet. In fact, it’s what prompted him to expand the Rumford Pet pawprint by purchasing four Pet Valu locations that closed last year, and onboarding many of their beloved employees.

“We’re thrilled to welcome the many Pet Valu associates these communities have come to know and love to the Rumford Pet family. Supporting our neighborhoods and driving growth for the local economy is something we have been active and passionate about for decades.”

“I couldn’t be more thankful for this opportunity to join Rumford and continue to do what I love every day,” said Adriane Doyle, Store Manager, Rumford Pet Express. “Helping the people and pets in this amazing community is why I love coming to work.”

Another thing the Rumford Pet family is passionate about? Pet nutrition. Most pet owners know selecting the right pet food can be overwhelming. There is conflicting information and misinformation surrounding what your pet’s diet should consist of and what brands to avoid and why.

Now, as the largest pet specialty retailer in Rhode Island and Southern Massachusetts, Baker wants to make it easy for the pets and their people in the community to have access to the highest-quality, natural pet food, made with the best ingredients.

“We don’t carry all brands—only the inspired, innovative brands that care as much about people and pets as we do. We choose our partners with care and do our homework, so our customers don’t have to.”

The modern Rumford Pet, complete with pet-washing stations in select locations, is a far cry from their humble beginnings. In 1936 Herbert ‘Salty’ Baker, aquarium enthusiast and entrepreneur, started a small pet store in the basement of his house in Rumford. The first brick and mortar store was built in 1959 in East Providence, where it still stands. But, Baker assures, when it comes to the heart of the Rumford Pet story, not much has changed.

“Rumford Pet has always had a ‘neighbor helping neighbor’ mentality. There’s a personal connection and strong level of trust that comes in knowing that we’ve been helping pet parents make informed decisions about their pet’s nutritional needs for generations.”

What’s changed? The way we view our pets.

“Today, pets are treated as treasured family members. Pet parents are investing in high-quality, nutritious food, treats and toys that promise a better quality of life for their much-loved furbabies.”

Rumford Pet is celebrating the entire month of June with a series of fun-filled grand opening and re-opening events at all nine locations throughout Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Enjoy free nutritious treats, giveaways, pet adoptions, food trucks, and product demonstrations from the most popular brands in the industry. Visit or follow @RumfordPet on your favorite social channel for a complete schedule of activities and ribbon cutting ceremonies the entire family will enjoy!

2024 by East Bay Media Group

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Meet our staff
Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.