Bay Area Pet Adoptions/SPCA was founded in 1967 to care for homeless, abandoned, and abused companion animals; today, it is still the only no-kill shelter in its area. Adoption counselors rescue dogs and cats from animal-control facilities that euthanize and individuals who are unable to care for them. Bay Area Pet Adoptions/SPCA’s adoption program provides each animal with medical care and socialization skills to increase the chances of a successful adoption. Each animal is vaccinated, sterilized, dewormed, microchipped, and checked for diseases such as FIV or canine heartworm disease. From there, adoption counselors help place pets with a family that has a similar lifestyle and activity level. Bay Area Pet Adoptions/SPCA also works within the community to prevent animals from being abandoned and euthanized through educational campaigns and spaying or neutering programs.
A lush lawn and garden center teems with trees, flowers, and fragrant mulches, inspiring homeowners to create cozy stomping grounds for their farm animals and household pets. Inside Gulf Coast Equine and Pet Center, bags of feed from brands such as Purina and Nutrena await trips to swine troughs, dog dishes, and the Triple Crown trophies from which the coolest horses eat their meals. An onsite pet salon grooms dogs large and small, paying close attention to families' and pets' personal tastes as groomers create each dog's new 'do.
If a pet can’t stay at home while its owner is at work, its days can be just as comfortable and fun-filled at Gimmie a Bark’s elegantly homey facilities. Here, beloved pooches 25 pounds or less lounge on comfy blankets in well-kept kennels or frolic in the secure outdoor confines. Once their humans come to retrieve them, they can peruse the multihued doggy boutique together for gourmet treats, handpicked dog food products from brands such as Acana, or debonair attire for doggy prom.
Southern Breeze Equestrian Center is a utopia for horse lovers, where expert instruction turns whinnying tenderfeet into sure-footed saddle-masters. With lessons devised for all ages and experience levels, this full-service facility fills its four riding arenas with enthusiastic forays into horsemanship. Southern Breeze’s 45-minute private lesson ($65), offered Mondays through Saturdays with one of the center's experienced assistant trainers, is tailored to individual levels of equine expertise. First-time riders spend some ground time looking under the hood, using humanpower to harness horsepower before embarking on their first longe-line ride. Experienced straphangers will work on enhancing their skills, mastering the maneuvers of dressage horses or leaping over 20 burning busses.
At Bay Area Equestrian Center, riders can advance from basic lessons all the way up to horse ownership and national-level competition on the Arabian show circuit. They do so under the guidance of Lynn Almond, who founded Friendswood Riding School in 1990 and turned it into BAEC in 1995. A member of the horse community her entire life, Lynn has used her wisdom to vault students to national championships in Western, Hunter, and Sidesaddle riding styles. Today, the center's visitors can learn from Lynn and her team during private and group lessons.
At Silverlake Animal Hospital, beloved dogs and cats get the attention they deserve. Anchored by hospital owner Dr. Terri Stone, the four-veterinarian team works to keep tails wagging with preventative care as well as medical and surgical services. Dr. Stone earned the AAHA Excellence in Small Animal Surgery award, making her the first non-hamster recipient since the award's inception. There are even a few unexpected treatments, like acupuncture and laser therapy. Boarding services are also available, and an array of optional grooming services can make sure they come home freshly bathed.