Guests turn in for the night to recline in plush beds as they listen to soft music and enjoy meals delivered by attentive staff members. Rather than venturing out in the morning to shop and sightsee, however, these lodgers would rather spend some quality time with a chew toy. When away from home, pet guests at Pappy's Pet Lodge lie in the lap of luxury with amenities typically found in four-star human resorts. Orthopedic, chew-proof Kuranda pet beds cosset pups while they rest from the day's three walks and bounty of play time with similar-sized dogs. Experienced trainers also lead classes that help banish bad behaviors, from chewing on the couch and barking excessively to borrowing the car without asking.
4-C Stables hands equine enthusiasts the reins to its team of even-tempered horses for trail rides, camps, and lessons within its expansive facility. Stable owner Stacey, a veterinary technician by training, heads up 4-C's 60-minute horsemanship lessons, which are tailored to each rider's experience and introduce varied aspects of horses and horse care. Students begin with the basics of safety and grooming before matriculating to more advanced equitation topics, such as dismounting and riding in slow motion for dramatic effect. With successful completion of all beginner-level requirements, students can graduate to intermediate studies, where they learn such skills as proper care of the tack, issuing verbal commands, and riding with the correct posture.
When Dr. Valri E. Brown was a kid, she loved dogs, cats, and horses?so much so that she often snuck (non-horse) critters into her house to the displeasure of her mom. Nowadays, though, her career would make any mom proud. She's the veterinarian behind The Dog & Cat Clinic and Laser Center, where she and her team treat beloved pets with services ranging from shots to laser surgeries. The clinic boasts a temperature-controlled pet-boarding area, too, and a large backyard for animals to play in.
Regina's Pet Parlor keeps animals looking clean with a variety of grooming treatments including baths, coat brushing, and haircuts. Special whitening, oatmeal, and low-shed shampoos make pooches feel pampered, and nail painting and grinding treatments help their paws stand out at the local dog park.
Ellis County SPCA is a nonprofit organization striving to help homeless or unwanted cats and dogs find permanent, loving homes. Before discovering a four-legged soul mate, interested applicants must complete and flawlessly origami-fold a pre-adoption form to ensure that they and their homes are qualified for pet ownership. Once potential owners are deemed fit and prepared for a pet, they may visit the facility during adoption hours to cuddle and caper around with hairy friends in much the same way death-metal bands bond before each practice. Each adorable quadruped will come home with parvovirus, distemper, and rabies vaccinations, as well as 30 days worth of free vet insurance through ShelterCare.