Houston PetTalk November 2022

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Houston PetTalk Magazine 5
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Keep Pets Indoors When Possible • Provide Outdoor Shelter for Your Pets Care for Your Pet’s Feet • Provide Extra Food and Water Use Leashes When Walking Near Water • Don’t Lock Pets in Cars Keep Antifreeze Out of Reach from Your Pets CHECK YOUR VEHICLE BEFORE STARTING THE ENGINE © 2022 Sotheby’s International Realty. All Rights Reserved. The Sotheby’s International Realty trademark is licensed and used with permission. Each Sotheby’s International Realty office is independently owned and operated, except those operated by Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc. The Sotheby’s International Realty network fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Seasonal tips that will help ensure you and your pets are prepared during the winter season. Proven. Positive. Powerful. WINTER PET SAFETY TIPS $440+M IN CAREER SALES 550+ TRANSACTIONS 350+ SELLERS 200+ BUYERS 30+ SERVING THE HOUSTON LUXURY MARKET #10 HBJ RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE LUXURY AGENT 2020 #5 TOP AGENT AT MARTHA TURNER SOTHEBY’S INTERNATIONAL REALTY 2020 713.213.2011 | Kellie.Geitner@sir.com KELLIEGEITNER.COM

Letter from the Editor

On the cover


As our furry friends take a front row seat in our families, pet parenting is taken to a whole new level. In our feature, we have some fun exploring the different parenting styles. Are you a spoiler? A worrier? A collector? Check out our feature story on page 24 for a little tongue in cheek (as well as informative) look into being a pet mom or dad.

A big thank you to cover model "Daisy" Sachar who knows just how to pull off the pampered pet look. And, kudos to her amazing groomer, Paul Willis, owner of the multi-location The Pet Barber (see page 35). Photo by Allison Wilkins McPhail of Evin Thayer Studios.

In my many years of publishing PetTalk, I have seen some seriously crazy pet parenting! From creating luxury sleeping spaces and habitats to hiring a doggy chef or building a swimming pool for a miniature horse, I’ve had the enjoyment of witnessing over-the-top human actions that directly benefit some lucky animals. Is this spoiling "too much"? I prefer a spoiled pet to a neglected one. Also in my many years of publishing, I’ve unfortunately seen much more abuse and misery than spoiling, so from my perspective, I say go for it and spoil away! For a bit of fun, we are showcasing some spoiled pet stories, luxe shopping and an array of wacky pet parenting activities. I want to offer a special thank you to groomer extraordinaire, Paul Willis of The Pet Barber, for grooming cover dog Daisy and Stella (featured on page 26). I also want to thank Bobby and Maria Davidson of Houston’s newest luxury boutique and coffee/wine cafe, PUCCI Cafe, for allowing us to show case a few of their awesome products that are perfect for spoiling your pup!

Next, we are paying a tribute to the amazing longevity of Pampered Pet Inn as they celebrate 40 years serving Hous ton’s pet owners! Check out their story on page 36 and as a special treat, the city is proclaiming November 1st as Pampered Pet Day so be sure to leave them a congrats message on their Facebook page.

As is our annual tradition, each No vember we showcase a Holiday Shopping Guide to give you some great gift ideas for the pets and pet lovers on your naughty and nice list. We have curated 18 special products and of course, we always want to

encourage shopping local!

Speaking of the holidays, there is lots to do and lots to plan! Be sure to make your boarding reservations (page 22) early if needed and also check out the many fun pet events coming up for your family, both two-legged and four-legged, to enjoy. Of particular importance to mark on your calendar is PetTalk’s very own event, our 3rd Annual PAWliday Market, December 3rd at Powder Keg. We have put together a fun-filled event this year including adoptable pets, over 40 vendors with holiday decorat ed booths, the return of the popular Owner/ Pet Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest which is offering some super cool prizes, plus face painting, caricature artist, street teams from the Astros, Dynamo, Dash and Sabercats, a rockin’ DJ and a special treat - Santa is flying in from the North Pole for selfies - so save the date and come be Merry with us!

Last but not least, November is a time to be THANKFUL and count our many blessings. Here at PetTalk, we are espe cially thankful to our readers for your many years of support, as well as our sponsors who make PetTalk possible and FREE to the public. And for our readers, I know many of you have rescued animals that are THANK FUL for their second chance and that you feel equally grateful to have them in your life - which reminds me of one of my favorite quotes that is apropos to end my column with this month:

“Gratitude is not only the greater of virtues, but the parent of all others.”

© Copyright 2020. Reproduction or use without written permission of articles, editorial or pictorial content in any manner is prohibited. Houston PetTalk does not knowingly accept false or misleading advertising or editorial, nor do the publishers assume responsibility should such advertising or editorial appear. Houston PetTalk does not endorse any specific product or service contained herein; we do encourage you to support our advertisers whenever possible.

photos ©copyright depositphotos unless otherwise stated.

HOUSTON PETTALK MAGAZINE 14781 Memorial Drive, Ste. 510, Houston, Texas 77079 281-556-6560
Houston PetTalk Magazine 9

Where in the World is PetTalk?


Enjoying the Hill Country, Rebekah Drake and Danny Rodkey are check ing out their copy of PetTalk in the charming town of Boerne. Thanks for sharing with us!

Send your Travel photos featuring PetTalk

You never know where on this planet you might find a PetTalk reader enjoying their copy! If you’ve snapped a travel pic of yourself or one of our readers, send your photo to info@houstonpettalk.com.


Mike and Melna Knox picked a beautiful backdrop in Prince Edward Island to enjoy their copy of PetTalk. Thanks Mike and Melna for sharing this awesome photo!

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Book Now.

PETSUITES THE WOODLANDS 8531 Hufsmith Rd, Tomball, TX 77375 Call 832.559.2957 | Text 832.559.0337 thewoodlands.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES LONG MEADOW 5535 Meadow Ranch Pkwy Houston, Texas 77407 Call 346.439.1897 | Text 346.415.4500 longmeadow.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES ATASCOCITA 17730 West Lake Houston Pkwy Humble, TX 77346 Call 346.415.4906 | Text 346.415.5100 atascocita.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES PEARLAND 3205 Kirby Dr, Pearland, TX 77584 Call 832.856.0353 | Text 832.856.0455 pearland.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES SPRING RAYFORD 2825 Canyon Ranch Dr Spring, TX 77386 Call 346.220.6310| Text 346.808.4548 springrayford.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES SUGAR LAND 20430 SW Fwy, Richmond, TX 77469 Call 832.365.3159 | Text 832.945.1555 sugarland.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES SPRING KLEIN 6525 Louetta Rd, Spring, TX 77379 Call 346.220.6310 | Text 346.808.4548 Klein.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES CYPRESS 13010 Wortham Center Dr Houston, TX 77065 Call 832.497.4135| Text 281.640.0053 cypress.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES WESTHEIMER 13440 Westheimer Rd Houston, TX 77077 Call 3462972663 | Text 3466463700 westheimer.petsuitesofamerica.com

PETSUITES MISSOURI CITY 8320 Copper Creek Lane Missouri City, TX 77459 Call 346.257.2807 | Text 346.245.5531 missouricity.petsuitesofamerica.com

BOARDING • DAYCARE • GROOMING • TRAINING Let's have a sleepover! First Boarding night FREE. Our TREAT ! (Oops, probably shouldn’t say that word out loud.)

1. Platform shoes…allows me to look down on all cats.

2. The fashion trend of “cut outs” is fading fast. Try wearing cut outswith six breasts.

3. Vegan hotdogs. I know, I know… hotdogs are my favorite food groupbut I feel it’s in every 4-leggers best interest to promote not eating 4-leggers.

4. Champagne towers…ahhh…the flow of bubbly pouring into so many glasses. I never know which one(s) to pick!

5. Bees

6. Two-legger foster parents

7. Tom Brady might be availableand if so, will definitely pick me.

8. Cake-flavored Vodka

9. When DL gets extra amounts of Botox so I don't have to see the scowl on her face when I come home late from the Salty Dog.

10. Dogs don’t cancel, hate or shame others. We are very acceptingand even share the ones we’ve “been with”. However, we do not share food (and may even steal it).

11. TikTok made the dance move Beggin' a hip thing...I've been doin'that dance my whole life.

12. And as always…that I’m not a Turkey!

Henrietta Illustration by Jim Tweedy, Colorizing by Desiree Lonsway
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ROUTINE WELLNESS & EMERGENCY CARE 2959 SW Freeway Houston, TX SunsetAnytime.com | 713-574-9052 FOR A FREE PET EXAM Go to SunsetAnytime.com/PetTalk Quality 24/7

Tails for Trails Hosted By Barrio Dogs & Emancipet

Barrio Dog and Emancipet, two local animal welfare nonprofit organiza tions, joined forces, partnering on the first annual Tails for Trails Houston. Tails for Trails Houston is an opportunity for dog owners to leash up their four-legged best friend and join us for a morning stroll in the beautiful Mason Park, in Houston’s East End. The walk was led by Laura Conely with Urban Paths Wellness Coaching.  The event included pet-friendly vendors, dog puppuccinos/treats, and goodie bags from Tito’s Vodka + Vodka for

Dog People.

Funds raised at Tails for Trails Houston, through sponsorships and through participant contributions, further the mission of Barrio Dogs and Emancipet. Barrio Dogs has been working in Houston’s East End since 2010 with the mission of raising awareness about proper animal care and the importance of spaying and neutering pets. Emancipet is a nonprofit orga nization on a mission to ensure that everyone in the U.S. has access to veterinary care they can afford.

Photos courtesy of Paul Carrizales with American Prestige Photography
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Brandywine Valley SPCA

Mega Adoption Event

Houston’s second Mega Adoption Event was a huge success with 1,058 dogs and cats finding forever families. Many area shelters participated in the event, bringing a plethora of animals for adoption to George R. Brown Convention Center the first weekend of September. Some participants included Montgomery County Ani

mal Shelter, Houston Humane Society, BARC, Harris County Pets, Brazoria County, Petopia of Sugar Land and many others. The event was hosted by Brandywine SPCA. Thank you to all of the volunteers and workers that made the adoptions possible and we wish the families and their new furry loved ones many happy years together!

Photos courtesy of Brandywine Valley SPCA
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Abig congratulations to one of the happiest pups in Houston, Finn, who snagged first place in PetTalk’s Don’t Worry, Be Happy Photo Contest sponsored by USA Pet Resorts. Finn received a $500 certificate for services at USA Pet Resorts, where he will surely have a great time enjoying a luxury stay replete with pool and spa! Run ners Up, Lucy Goosey and Zoe, also received

a $250 certificate to enjoy the amenities at USA Pet Resort, Houston’s newest pet facility, that offers stress-free boarding, training, spa services, in-home options and much more.

Learn more about them at USAPetResorts.com. For more contests throughout the year, visit us at HoustonPetTalk.com and watch for the an nouncements in our newsletter (sign up on our website) and Facebook.com/houstonpettalk.


Don't Worry, Be Happy! contest winners & finalists winner

RunnerUp RunnerUp
Finn Félix Duvalin Heidi Piper M'lynn Vinny Lucy Goosey
Zoe 16 www.houstonpettalk.com
sandnsea.com | 409.797.5500 Pet Friendly Vacation Rentals on Galveston Island LOCAL & TRUSTED SINCE 1974 Grooming to Perfection! Award Winning Bathing & Grooming. 281-370-3647 ADOGSLIFEPETSALON.COM 7812 Louetta Rd. Spring Texas 77379 Houston PetTalk Magazine 17

Petbar Opens More Houston Locations

Petbar, a full-service and self-service grooming salon, continues to expand locations with seven stores now open to serve Greater Houston. Known for their clean, fresh stores and cheerful client service, pooches and their parents can enjoy the amenities of a full grooming or bathing service with experienced groomers. For those who prefer DIY, the self-service stations are well appointed with quality products and wash

basins. As the holidays approach and you want your furry friend looking and smelling their best, find a Petbar location near you and make an appointment for grooming or self service. Plus, Petbar offers memberships for unlimited bath and brush! The Houston area locations include Conroe, Katy, Sugar Land, Oak Forest, Heights, Bellaire and League City. Learn more about Petbar at PetBarInc.com.

Houston Humane Society Golf Tournament

Be a part of changing the lives of over 50,000 local animals a year by becoming a sponsor or making a donation at Houston Humane's 32nd Annual Par Fore Pets fundraising event! This life-saving day takes the form of a golf tournament presented by Quail Valley Courses & City Centre, November 11 with a shotgun start at 9AM. Golfers will enjoy a beauti ful course with hole-in-one contest, course cart and refreshments, lunch, and an auction to cap off the afternoon. By

committing to be a 2022 sponsor, you will be playing a vital role in getting animals off the streets and providing them with the shelter, medical care, and life-saving resources they desperately need. Align yourself with Houston Humane's mission and reach their over 100K social media follow ers, 38K email subscribers, and over 1.3 million website visitors annually when you sign up today! Fill out a sponsorship form at houstonhumane.org/Assets/golf-spon sorships-2022-v4.pdf and send to golf@ houstonhumane.org. Find more details, visit HoustonHumane.org/golf.

NEWS & EVENTS DOGGIE WALKS Insured & Bonded, Professional In-Home PET SITTER & DOG WALKER 8 32 .22 9 .809 5 WW W. DO GG I E WALK SHOU S TON.CO M CONTACT@DOGGIEWALKSHOUSTON.COM Servicing Central West Houston from Memorial City to the Heights HOUS T O N 18 www.houstonpettalk.com

PetTalk’s 3rd Annual PAWliday Market Returns December 3rd!

Let the holiday celebrations begin with our 3rd Annual PAWliday Market on December 3rd at Powder Keg (1300 Brittmoore) starting at 10AM. This event is PET & FAMILY friendly and we would like to welcome all of you to join the fun!

Santa himself will be taking a break from making toys for good boys and girls and be on hand for selfies, sponsored by K9 Resorts. After your selfie, stroll through the many vendors for one-of-a-kind finds for your holiday shopping for both pets and people as you enjoy the holiday sounds from our DJ. Vendor booths are competing for Best Decorated Booth, sponsored by Caitie’s Foster Farm, so we know they will be super festive! Plus, we know you’ll be thirsty and hungry from all this fun and we’ve got you covered! Powder Keg offers great libations, there will be several food trucks serving a variety of nibbles, and we will have a snack booth full of goodies sponsored by Hollywood Feed.

Believe it or not, there is tons of more fun to be had! Enter the Pet & Parent Ugly Christ mas Sweater Contest for a chance to win great prizes, judged by local media celebs (and

possibly a surprise visit by a famous Houston athlete). Sponsored by VERGI 24/7, prizes will be given to MOST CREATIVE, BEST OVER ALL & BEST TEAM. ALL CONTESTANTS MUST PRE-REGISTER this year. Submit your name, pet name, pet age, costume information and a sentence about your pet to ggarcia@hous tonpettalk.com. In addition to the contest, the event will feature face painting, caricature art ist, adoptable animals, and street teams from the Astros Shooting Stars, Sabercats, Dynamo, and Dash who will be giving away cool prizes, sponsored by our friends at Veterinary Dental Specialists.

The first 500 attendees will receive our re usable SWAG BAGS filled with awesome good ies sponsored by: Houston PetTalk Magazine, Doggie Express, WoW WoW Hawaiian Lemon ade & Great Dane Rescue of Southeast Texas. If you would like to pre-register to attend and get a GUARANTEED Swag Bag, please email us your name, cell number and number of at tendees to ggarcia@houstonpettalk.com.

Mark you calendar to spread some JOY with us, Make MERRY and have a HO HO HO of a good time...see you December 3rd!

NEWS & EVENTS Photos courtesy of Yaxon Media Pet First Aid & CPR certified Bonded/Insured/Background checked Text/Call: 281-300-6712 LUCYGOOPETSITTING.COM GO LOCAL. BOOK GOO Voted Houston's #1 Pet Sitting Business from the Readers of Pet Talk Magazine Lucy Goo Pet Sitting Daily Dog Walks & Pet Sitting for Pups, Cats, and more! WE’RE HIRING! EST:2009 Houston PetTalk Magazine 19

The Opening Of PUCCI Cafe in Katy

The greatly anticipated PUCCI Café & Pet Boutique is now open in LaCen terra at Cinco Ranch in Katy. Dog enthusiasts have followed the luxury boutique since the launch of the online brand in 2019, but the opening of the café/boutique brings a new standard for dogs and owners alike. Own ers, Maria and Bobby Davidson, were inspired by the dog-friendly outdoor cafes across Eu rope. They launched PUCCI as a space for dog owners to mingle and enjoy a glass of wine or cup of coffee on their beautiful back waterside patio of the LaCenterra Lake. The boutique sells designer canine accessories that are imported from countries all over the world and throughout the United States.

“Think of PUCCI as a destination to pamper your dog and experience delicious beverages on the lakeview patio with your pup,” said co-founder, Maria Davidson. “Luxury, inviting, fun – we have it all.” With its expansive 2,500 square foot, multi-level dog-friendly patio that overlooks Cinco Ranch Lake, the doggie destination also features a fenced in play area supervised by a staff member for patrons to

leave their dogs while they shop inside. The space can also be used to host dog birthday parties and “Gotcha Day” celebrations, as well as a place to spend your evenings with friends and family. A portion of PUCCI’s proceeds

will go back to dog rescues in the community. PUCCI Café is located at 23501 Cinco Ranch Boulevard, Suite N200. They are open daily from 9AM to 10PM. For more information about this innovative destination, visit puccicafe.com.

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Pet Days WITH SANTA AT ST. NICK’S PARK IN MEMORIAL CITY MALL FREE SKATING + CAROUSEL PASSES WITH EACH PHOTO PACKAGE EVERY MONDAY NOV 7 – DEC 19 Reservations at MemorialCity.com/Santa Domestic pets only on a leash or in a carrier with proof of vaccinations. Located in the Dillard’s Court. Please bring pets in the mall entrance near Visible Changes. Scan to make your reservation FREE PHOTO PRINT * WITH A $5 DONATION TO HOUSTON PETS ALIVE and the purchase of the Santa Special Digital Downloads Package * Choice of (1) 8”x10” or (2) 5”x7” prints. Mondays only.

The Holiday Boarding Season Is Here…Make Your Reservations Today!

If travel is in your plans this Holiday Season and your pet is not coming along, be sure to make your reservations early with one of our sponsors, some of the very best Houston has to offer, to ensure your pet has a safe, fun experience while you’re away! Who wants to worry about their pet’s safety or well-being while vacationing or visiting with family? No one! Early reservations are highly suggested because space fills up quickly in premium boarding facilities.

A few things to think about when board ing your pet include making sure you have enough prescription medicine, if applicable, for their stay as well as checking with your veterinarian on vaccination schedules. Most boarding facilities will require vaccinations, including Bordatella, which is a noncore vac

cine that is given to dogs that are frequently exposed to other dogs in boarding or social settings for prevention of kennel cough. Ad ditionally, some boarding facilities provide food but a change in food can cause stomach issues so it may be better to bring your pet’s food as well.

Speaking of stomach issues, it is not uncommon for dogs to get GI issues when boarding. It does not mean the facility did anything wrong or the facility is not clean and safe. The GI upset is often caused from the stress of being in a new environment or a food change so once again, bringing your own food is best.

Boarding isn’t only for dogs of course! If you are traveling for a length of time, you may need to board your cat as well. Several

of our sponsors offer cat boarding. Another option for cats is a pet sitter that will visit your home daily to care for your kitty. See a list of our sponsors and their services below. While you are away, your pet will have an opportunity to socialize and have some fun as well! You can choose from add-on services that include extra play sessions, story time, frosty paws treats, special walks with the staff, holiday photos and more. In a month where THANKFULNESS is at the forefront, it’s a great reminder to be thankful that Houston has so many high quality facilities offering an array of services so that our pets can have a MERRY vacation too!

NEWS & EVENTS Birds: Adventures in Birds AdventuresInBirdsinc.com 7414 Westview Drive Dogs & Cats: Bingle Vet - 2 Locations BingleVet.com 2025 Bingle Rd. 5215 FM 1463, Ste. 400, Katy Blessed Paws Pet Resort BlessedPaws.com 20130 Kuykendahl, Spring  Meadowlake - 2 Locations MeadowlakePetResort.com 13500 Furman- 288 South 6393 Richmond Ave. Pampered Pet Inn PamperedPetResortsTX.com 2411 Bissonnet St. Sunset Animal Hospital SunsetAnytime.com 2959 Southwest Frwy. Dogs Only: Canine Country Club MyCanineCountryClub.com 1440 Katy Gap, Katy Club Canine ClubCanineHouston.com 4703 Rose Street K9 Resorts K9Resorts.com 12145 Katy Fwy. Peace Love Dogs PeaceLoveDogsHouston.com 9615 Yupondale Drive PetSuites Prestonwood Kennels PrestonwoodKennels.com 13302 Schroeder Rd. USA Pet Resorts USAPetResorts.com 21120 Spring Towne Dr., Spring Yuppie Dog YuppieDog.com 2203 S. Durham Drive Overnight Stay Pet Sitting Doggie Walks Houston DoggieWalksHouston.com Lucy Goo Pet Sitting LucyGooPetSitting.com

What Kind of Pet Parent are You?

Ready to charm everyone at the upcom ing Holiday parties, Tori and Kandi know how to handle a life of luxury...with joy! Both girls are rescues and the inspiration for their parents new luxury dog boutique, PUCCI Cafe in LaCeneterra at Cinco Ranch. The girls are looking their finest in Chanel Tweed Dog Coats in Cream and Black while relaxing in the Artic Bed Embel lished with a Rhinestone Brooch, available at PUCCI Cafe.

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Are you one of those people that proudly wear the label “crazy pet parent”? If so, you are happily joined by thousands of others who feel the same way you do! Over the years of publishing Houston PetTalk, I have seen some over-the-top, funny, crazy, bizarre, weird behaviors and activities from pet owners but my thoughts are this: I would rather see a pet parent spoil their pet or find humorous ways to make their life together more fun than I would to see the pitiful faces of homeless animals or the starved, emaciated bodies of neglected pets. In this feature, we lightheartedly explore

different pet parenting styles from the spoiler to the athlete, worrier, collector and more. We also asked our readers to share their pet parenting habits and we got some great submissions. Check out a few of our favorites on page 32. It's fun to see how much pet parents love their furbabies and the many ways in which they integrate their pets into their lives. We hope this feature is a fun reminder that pets are in our life to provide love, laughter and joy!

Is this not adorable? Who wouldn't want to spoil this cute little nugget! Meet Baxter who is ready to go where life takes him in this Mini JL Duffel Quilted Ivory Dog Car rier with Designer Stripes and Big Crown Dog Bow Clip, all available at PUCCI Cafe.

A Special Thank You To: The Pet Barber For Grooming Stella & Daisy, and to PUCCI Cafe For Providing Luxury Accessories and Models Tori & Kandi.
Houston PetTalk Magazine 25

The Spoiler

The Spoiler is by far one of the most common pet parenting styles. From lavish clothes and the best toys to luxury vacations, noth ing is too good for this parent's furbaby. Is spoiling a bad thing? Well, that depends. If buying your dog an elaborate dog house or building your cat a tree house in your spare bedroom is spoiling, then that brand of spoiling is fine. You are providing your pet with a comfortable or engaging environment.

On the other hand, if you encourage your Lab puppy to sit with you and cuddle on the sofa as a youngster, but you don't want your 90 lb. full-grown Lab on the furniture, then you have created a habit that is hard to break. Or, if you carry your 4 lb.

Chihuahua everywhere and not allow her to "be a dog", you may end up with an anxious, unconfident pup. It's all about consistency and remembering they are not humans, they are canines (or felines, or other spe cies) that were born with certain behavioral and instinctual needs. When in doubt, see a professional trainer before bad habits are created.

Spoiling a pet is OK, which is different than a spoiled pet. Making sure your pet doesn't constantly get something for nothing is the best way to keep a balanced relationship. You can lavish your dog with a diamond necklace (because frankly, they have no idea they are wearing diamonds), but make them sit for dinner or hold a sitstay for 15 seconds before giving them that

tasty treat.

When in doubt about spoiling your pet, there are typically three areas to look at.

First, is your pet overweight? Too many treats, human food, etc. can cause health issues. Obese pets are considered an epi demic so to keep your pet around for many years, don't over-spoil with food and treats. Second, is your dog chronically misbehav ing? Boundries and consistency are a must! And last, if your dog shows any sign of aggression toward humans or other animals, seek a professional trainer to help you get the relationship in balance and behavior out of the "naughty" column and back to the "nice" column!

Model “Stella” Abramson, expertly groomed by The Pet Barber, is adorned with the Dubai Dog Pearl Necklace from PUCCI Cafe. The necklace is made of 3 rows of pearls laced up with a silky white ribbon. Treats on a silver platter? Yes, only the best for our spoiled pups! Treats provided by PUCCI Cafe.
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Daisy, our cover model, is a Lagotto Romagnolo who knows just what any pampered pup wants: a luxurious bed, specifically the Chewy Vuiton Dog Bed from PUCCI Cafe! Daisy's mom says, " She is spoiled with major love, weekly adventure hikes with Pupfit and weekly grooming and bubble baths-camomile spa treatments at The Pet Barber. She’s funny, playful, loyal, super-smart and knows how to get what she wants - which is usually treats and belly rubs!"

We love Daisy's smile! Follow her on Instagram: @daisy_sacovitsky

Model Kandi is surrounded by so much luxury and bling that it calls for sunglasses! All items available at PUCCI Cafe: Quilted Pink Marlee Dog Carrier, Haute Couture Art Deco Metallic Gold Leather Dog Collar with Swarovski Crystal, Dubai Pearl Dog Necklace, Himalayan Yak Dog Mat, White Chewy Vuiton Handbag Dog Toy, and Fursace Handbag Dog Toy. Houston PetTalk Magazine 27

The Family Fanatic

Afew decades ago, it was accepted that pets lived outside, visited a vet only if they ex hibited emergency level symptoms, ate table scraps, and were trained with a rolled-up newspaper.

Hallelujah that we have progressed from those days, but have we gone too far the other di rection? Not only do pets live indoors, they rule the household in some cases. They sleep in their owner's beds, smile widely for the family Christmas card, dress up for the Sunday NFL game, eat high dollar kibble and, for the super extremists, they get orthodontics. Yes, doggie braces do exist. Over 80% of pet owners consider their pet part of the family. With the change of just one letter, pets have moved from the pethouse to the penthouse!

“I take baths with my cat by letting her float in a plastic box.”

Play Dress Up

Dressing your pet up for an outing or contest gets mixed reviews from our readership. Some folks say it's downright torture to make your pet dress like a bee or a hotdog. Others think it's cute and harmless. At Houston PetTalk, we've seen plenty of dogs that seem to love their clothes or accessories and plenty that work hard to remove them. Our advice: Let your pet decide.

Slumber Party

For those "All in the Family" pet parents, cosleeping is just one more way they show their opinion about their pet's stature in the family. More pets than not sleep with their owners (dogs and cats). This is true even though the pet takes over the bed and forces the hu mans to sleep in a sliver of space. Personally, I think it would be a great business to start a new mattress size. Forget King size, let's move up to Family size!

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Is the term “pet parent” misleading if our dogs and cats will never grow up to be able to care for themselves?

The Athlete

Being active with your pet is impor tant but we all know a pet mom or dad that looks for every chance to get outdoors and take athleticism to a whole new level. They need action, action and more action! (Usually can be found with a Lab/Golden/Border Collie/Aussie next to them). They go running and hiking with their dog, set up agility runs for their cat, throw frisbee in the park or go to the beach for a day of swimming and ball retrieval. They make the rest of us tired just thinking about all of that activity. The Athlete lives a healthy lifestyle and loves sharing the exhilaration and competition of play with their pet. The only warning here is safety. The Athlete can sometimes get caught up in the moment and end up with a dog that may have a heatstroke, snake bite, or torn/ burned paw pads.

Take Up A New Sport

“Our dog loves to get mail from the mailman, and shred it of course. So we actually mail her letters, the mailman knows which mail is “hers”, hands it to her and off she goes to shredding it.”

If getting exercise with your dog is your vibe, then you will probably welcome a chance to also bond learning a new sport like agility. The cool thing is that you can learn agility together, (think weave poles, tire jumps, seesaws) and take it to any level. You can practice for fun or take classes and compete in the sport to the highest level you desire. Don't worry about it being too cold out side during the winter or too hot during the summer, because Houston boasts one of the largest indoor agility training centers in the country: Dog Gone Fun Agility, located at 26310 DOBBINHUFFSMITH RD. MAGNOLIA 77354. They also offer classes in other sports such as frisbee, rally, scent work and more. Find out the details at DogGoneFunAgility.com.

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The Collector

The bleeding heart of pet parents, the Collector has a slew of animals, all with a STORY. Whether saved from the jaws of death at a shelter, found in a storm sewer, or "he wandered into the yard one day," the Collector can't help trying to save as many animals as possible given their living situation - plus one more. If they can accommodate 3 pets, they have at least 4 and so on.

Collectors often lament that they have "too many" pets but in reality, when one passes on, they replace it with another. So in fact, they like it this way! And, if it works for them, be thankful they are willing to keep saving creatures that need a helping hand.

Visiting a Collectors house can be a cha otic experience. "This is Sally's bed, she likes to sleep by the pantry." Yes, the bed is totally in the way of the flow of the kitchen but it's OK. Sally is happy. "The reason we have cat food in the laundry basket on top of the dryer is because Buzz (another dog), will eat Lulu's food (the cat). And so the story goes. Ac commodations are made for each critter and their individual idiosyncracies and the whole brood is totally content.

The Competitor

The pet parent that takes competi tion to the next level is easy to spot. All you have to do is get your phone out to say you want to show them a photo of your dog and they immediately start

“I paid $200 at the vet to discover my dog was faking trouble breathing so I would carry him. I thought that was really creative so now I carry him every where.”

scrolling through their photos to “one-up” you with an even better photo of their supe rior dog. Five minutes later, when you have had to look at 20 photos and hear all about MAX’s antics (that in reality, are no more

entertaining than any other dog), you real ize you’ve mistakenly entered the “My Dog Wins” competition and you recognize you are never going to win this battle and it’s best to just step away.

The competitor of course has another realm from which he or she can reign supe rior with their pet: social media. Yes, you bet ter bet the competitive pet parent has social media accounts for their pets that boast an eye-popping amount of followers. They care fully curate a multitude of photos, capturing their cat in a mid-air pounce and their dog dressed in a t-shirt and sunglasses, hair blowing in the wind as they ride in the family convertible (which was actually purchased so the world could see how amazingly awesome the dog is).

Do you know what really gets a competi tive pet parent revved up? A competition of course! These pet parents will go to great lengths to create elaborate costumes for costume contests, enter their pets in photo contests and look for any opportunity to earn bragging rights. Essentially their motto is: LIFE ISN’T PERFECT, BUT MY DOG (or CAT) IS.

isMydog thanbetter your dog.
The medical term for owning too many dogs?
30 www.houstonpettalk.com

The Worrier

In human nomenclature, this person would be somewhere between a hypo chondriac and a helicopter mom. Often willing to stay home from work because "Bella" just didn't seem right, the Worrier frets over every aspect of their pet's lives. Is their food good enough quality? Is the water at the daycare filtered? Oh, and forget going on vacation! Who would take care of the furbabies with the care and caution required to watch their every move?

Often a veterinarian's best customer, the Worrier can also be the veterinarian's worst headache. Mostly because they have already visited Dr. Google for whatever malady they think their pet has and have both a solution and tons of questions. But, it's better to be safe than sorry! (Their favorite mantra).

Many Worriers parent stable dogs and cats and it's good that they are willing to put their pet's safety, health and well-being at the top of their worry list. However, they can also create a neurotic pet that has no self-confidence. Never being allowed to make a choice, mistake, or have a "job", some pets don't do well with the negative energy that is produced by worrying. If your pet is anxious and unsure of itself and displaying unwanted behaviors, take a look at your parenting style. Are you pushing negative energy in the form of worry into your relationship? Pets under stand energy and body language much more than words so try to chill and enjoy the mo ment without projecting possible outcomes.

“I remodeled my house so that nearly every room had something for the cats: cat-walks, ledges, trees and posts. The renovation cost $35,000. Totally worth it.”
“My cat and I have matching sweat shirts. I’ve also found the clothes from Build-A-Bear fit him purr-fectly.”
Houston PetTalk Magazine 31

PetTalk Fans


Crazy dog mom here...I'm totally 'extra' when it comes to my fur-kids, Caesar and Charlotte. Special food? Yep. Embroidered blankets? Obviously. Coordinated play dates with their fur-friends like swimming (Joasis) and doggie treadmill runs (Run Fido) to keep them healthy and social? Absolutely. They also have their own room complete with hung photos, customized pillows, paw print designs, hung clothes and collars, a dresser topped with photos of their friends, and an oscillating fan to keep cool...yep, spoiled. Everyday they get their R&R in their room on their plush doggie bed, with clean sheets and every week their room gets cleaned and a spritz of lavender. IG: @kingcaesarthebulldog


My golden retriever Logan is an avid sports

of his favorite sports is dock diving and lure coursing. With the Texas heat being pretty much year-round, Logan gets his own fan and canopy tent to stay cool in between splashes. Follow him on


Share Their EXTRA Pet Parenting Moments


After losing my schnauzer Oliver of 16 years, I got Bentley (mini schnauzer). Noth ing is off limits to him. He has personalized backpacks with his name embroidered. He has pretty much every color Ralph Lauren shirt made. At 3 months old, he had a Bent ley with red seats, a radio installed and blue tooth. He loves skateboarding, so of course he has his very own skateboard. He has two titles: AKC STAR Puppy and trick novice. I purchased a back drop stand and props just for grad pics. He is currently taking agility and about to start canine good citizen class. I purchased a CRICUT machine and easy press just to make him t-shirts. He loves to dance and we adore him. Mr. Bentley Boy is living his best life!


How do I spoil my dogs, Duke, Darla and Maximus? They have more outfits than I do, so I'm currently working on expanding their closet. Every Christmas we do a family card. My dog Duke gets to go to work with me every day. Darla, Momma and Maximus do FastCAT to earn points and get titles and ribbons - I even had Texas Pines make hold ers for their ribbons. My dogs get birthday parties every year and I even hired a party planner for Darla’s birthday (Amanda from The Barkday Planner). My dog Maximus is too big for most dog beds so he sleeps in a crib with his favorite paw patrol sheets and teddy bear. Darla even has her own Jeep to drive at all the PetTalk events, because walking is over-rated! All my dogs are on Instagram: @Duke_and_Darla, @pitty_girls, and @Maximus_the_palace_pup.

dog. One
We love hearing from our readers! Follow our social media, visit our website, and sign up for our newsletter at HoustonPetTalk.com for submissions and contests. 32 www.houstonpettalk.com
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We specialize in the art of ne grooming Me moria l 1022 W irt Road, Suite 31 2 Housto n, Te xa s 7 705 5 713 -393-718 1 Mont r os e 1417 Richmon d Av enu e Hous t on, Texas 77006 281 -974-131 3 Ri v er Oak s 36 4 1 Wes t heime r, Sui t e B Housto n, Tex as 77027 713 -393 -718 1 Ne w Loca ti on info@thepetbarberhouston.com ThePe tB a rberHou s ton . co m Houston PetTalk Magazine 35

With Pampered Pet Inn

Celebrating a business that just turned 40 years old is quite an accomplishment! Tell us about how Pampered Pet inn got started.

Pampered Pet Inn was founded by Selma Leiber in 1982 as a pet boarding, grooming, and accessory business. The name reflects Selma’s belief that, “even a dog shouldn’t be

treated like one.” (“Pampered Pet Inn Keeps its Customers Satisfied,” The Houston Post, 1987.)

The idea to open a dog kennel came from Leiber’s experience searching for a suitable place to board her own pampered pups. When she opened the first Pampered Pet Inn at 8622 S. Braeswood, she began a legacy of high-quality care that continues today at 2411

Bissonnet St. By 1987, Pampered Pet Inn was a thriving chain with three different locations! The Pampered Pet Inn that we know and love today was actually the second location in the chain.

From the beginning, Leiber treated her cli ents, their pets, and her employees like family, a tradition that continues in the family-owned business today.

Celebrating 40 Years Of Serving Houston’s Pet Community A Q&A
36 www.houstonpettalk.com

During a 40 year run, there must have been a number of changes and transitions as the pet industry grew. How did Pampered Pet Inn change over the decades?

As time went on, Selma Leiber began to sell each Pampered Pet Inn location, with Bill Gordon acquiring the Bissonnet St. location in 1988. Ellen O'Connor, our current owner, was one of the first groomers hired after Gordon took over the business. She worked at The Inn for nearly 16 years before she found out she had Lymphoma.

Ellen made a full recovery and decided it was time to leave Pampered Pet Inn to open

her own pet resort. When she went to submit her two-week notice, Gordon made her an offer she couldn’t refuse: acquiring Pampered Pet Inn’s Bissonnet St. location. Slowly, every other Pampered Pet Inn location closed, with the most recent location closing in 2012.

Ellen’s Pampered Pet Inn – now just Pam pered Pet Inn – is the last location left of Selma Leiber’s original chain, but it wasn’t alone for long. Ellen’s daughters, Erin and Mary Kate, are ringing in a new era for the Pampered Pet family with the opening of a sister facility, Pam pered Pet Recreation Center, which opened in September 2021 at 3545 O'Meara Dr.

Once Ellen took over the business, what changes did she make and what services did she add?

Ellen brought Pampered Pet Inn into the 21st century with computerized records and scheduling, a website and social media pages, and the addition of enrichment-based doggie daycare along with a pet shuttle service.

The Inn has also undergone several make overs, updating the inside – which used to feature red and navy blue checkered floors.

Lastly, Ellen acquired the building space next door to expand the property, adding additional play yards, 4 additional suites, and a more spacious cat and exotic pet area sepa rated from the main dog lodging areas.

As the pet industry has grown to a multibillion dollar industry, there are many pet facilities out there to compete with. What do you feel sets Pampered Pet Inn apart from the competition or makes the facility unique?

Pampered Pet Inn has a long history of treating Houston’s pets, their parents, and our employees like family. We have award-winning groomers, each with over 20 years of experi ence. We were even voted Best of the Best Pet Groomer by The Houston Chronicle in 2021, and a finalist for the same award in 2022.

Our staff cares deeply about the animals in our care, and are knowledgeable about the needs of dogs, cats, and even exotic pets. We offer special enrichment activities for lodging pets like Story & Cuddle time, Catnip Scratch ers, and games!

Our pride and joy is our enrichment-based doggie daycare program. We offer a unique doggie day camp experience that groups the dogs with ten friends or less and rotates them through different planned activities throughout the day with the same counselor and friends all day. Activities generally fall into one of four categories: active-play, calm-play, obstacles, and brain games/scent work.

All dogs receive both individual breaks and group breaks throughout the day, which is more aligned with the natural rhythm of a dog's

Erin Fitzpatrick with “Bear", Ellen O’Connor, Mary Kate Paulley with “Ryker” Current owner Ellen O’Connor, with daughter Erin, at Pampered Pet Inn grooming room in the 1990’s.
Houston PetTalk Magazine 37

November 1, 2022 Is proclaimed Pampered Pet Day by the City of Houston

sleep/wake cycle, allowing them time away from the group play environment to relax. This day care structure gives pampered pups the mental, physical, and social exercise they need.

Our enrichment-based doggie daycare pro gram became so popular that we couldn’t ac commodate all of the dogs who wanted to join! We opened Pampered Pet Recreation Center, our second location, as a doggie daycare-only facility so that we can continue meeting our community’s need for enriching daycare.

The day camp experience sounds like a great benefit for your client dogs so I can see why the demand is so high! Tell us more about the recreation center.

Pampered Pet Recreation Center, our new est location, opened in September 2021 in the Willowbend area -- just ten minutes away from The Inn! The Rec Center offers our enrichmentbased doggie day camp, elevated to a new level of pampered. The daycare-only facility has nearly 16,000 sq. ft. of play space, a turfed yard with doggie playground equipment, a sensory garden full of doggie-safe herbs and

sensations, a park-style yard with natural grass and native plants, indoor play yards, and a doggie waterpark.

The Rec Center is also the host for Pam pered Pet events like themed doggie day camp parties, our annual Fall Festival, and training classes provided by Sweetwater Bark. In just over one year of operation, Pampered Pet Recreation Center was voted Neighbor hood Favorite on Nextdoor.

We also hear you have some exciting news to share about the date, November 1st. What is happening that day?

In honor of Pampered Pet Inn’s anniversary, the City of Houston has proclaimed November 1st “Pampered Pet Day.” We’re so thankful to the Houston community for 40 years of support. It is our hope that every pet parent will celebrate this milestone with us by doing something special for their furry family, and we hope to continue pampering Houston’s pets for generations to come.

Wow, a proclamation from the City of Houston is quite an honor. Congratulations

on that achievement! What other fun things do you have planned for the holiday season?

We will be hosting open-to-the-public pet photos with The Grinch at Pampered Pet Rec reation Center in December. Visit our website event calendar at PamperedPetInn.com under the HOME tab for dates. We would love for the public to come check out our facility and celebrate our milestone with us!

Are you Inn-The-Pack?

Inn-The-Pack members receive exclusive VIP benefits at both Pampered Pet Resorts locations for one monthly or annual price. When Pampered Pet parents join the pack, they get instant access to Shuttle Service and Doggie Day Camp discounts, extended drop-off and pick-up times, and complimentary E-Postcards for every stay!

Original mural of The Inn.
38 www.houstonpettalk.com
Pampered Pet Inn 2411 Bissonnet 713-322-5177 Pampered Pet Recreation Center 3545 O'Meara Dr. 713-715-4456 facebook.com/pamperedpetinn Instagram: @pamperedpetinn PamperedPetResortsTX.com Houston PetTalk Magazine 39
40 www.houstonpettalk.com
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Gift Guide

Advent Calendar

Bonne et Filou’s new Advent Calendar for dogs is a beautifully illustrated luxury advent calendar featuring 24 dog treats: 4 macaroons, 12 bone treats, and 8 truffles for a fun, and tasty countdown to the holi days. Shop for yours at BonneEtFilou.com.

The holidays are a time of giving as we celebrate with family and friends, both twolegged and four-legged! Sharing in holiday festivities and gift giving is often part of our age-old traditions. We show someone we care by carefully selecting the perfect gift, something they will enjoy and that is personal to them.

Each year, we present our Annual Holiday Gift Guide to inspire you to find the perfect gift for the pet or pet lover on your list. We feature unique, artistic, useful and fun products, many of which are sold by our sponsors and we encourage you to shop with them because they make our publication possible and they provide valuable services and products to our pet community. Please keep them in mind during your shopping adventure!

Meow-y Christmas

Alex Ross World helps you deck out your kitchen with adorable accessories like aprons, tea towels and flour sack towels with animated portraits of pets! Alex's aprons are high quality, durable, and cus tom made on white 100% spun polyester with sublimation printing that will not fade. There are tons of styles, both cat and dog, with clever sayings. Find one for the dog or cat baker or chef on your shopping list at AlexRoss.World/collections/aprons.

42 www.houstonpettalk.com

Dreaming of A Wine Christmas

Handcrafted Texas wine is the perfect gift or addition to your holiday table and anyone with pets will tell you, wine is sometimes needed! Our pick this holi day season is local winery, Tempe Creek Vineyards. Their Estate Wine, the 2021 Blanc Du Bois, is grown and harvested by hand in their vineyard. Visit their tast ing room in Livingston or find details at tempecreekvineyard.com.

Oh Deer, It's Reining Toys!

Pups will no doubt know they were on Santa’s Nice List when they find these funfilled toys from HollywoodFeed. com in their stock ings! All Holiday Toys at Hollywood Feed are Buy

2, Get 1 Free starting November 1st through December 25th.

1. KONG Holiday Wubba brings festive flavor to interactive tugging and fetching in seasonal colors with adorable details that make indoor playtime a winter Wubba-land. Long, floppy tails reward shaking instincts while squeakers keep play going for tons of healthy action to help burn off all those holiday treats.

2. Your pup will have a Dino-Mite Christmas with a Tree Rex Dino toy! This Power Plush Dog Toy is made of Power Plush tech nology - it is soft on the outside but tough on the inside!

3. KONG CoreStrength is built to last and is sure to bring Bone-A-Fide JOY while providing extended play sessions. The durable KONG-crafted multilayered core stands-up to long-lasting chew sessions while meeting a dog’s natural chewing instincts. Ideal for independent play and interactive toss and retrieve.Season's Greetings

Send your Season’s Greetings to your friends and neigh-bors with this set of 10 Horse in Boots Holiday Cards: 4.25" x 5.5" printed card from original drawing, on heavyweight ivory laid texture paper and comes with an envelope. The sentiment inside reads "neigh your heart be filled with love and peace this season." Get yours at Etsy.com, Shop: RachelCanadaArtist.

Naughty or Nice?

Kitty aficionados know that sometimes felines can be mischievous, making them all the more lovable! For the cat lover on your shopping list, this cotton T-shirt will definitely make them feel both comfort and joy! Available at Etsy. com, Shop: MarigoldCustom.

Tis' The Season To Read

The perfect gift for the little ones in your life, promoting reading or listening to a book being read is a beautiful and ageold learning experience. Local author Patsy Burdine shares the adventures of Moe with his mischievous nature and spirit of hope. Purchase comes with a fingerpuppet too! Find Miracle of Moe or other children's books by Patsy at MiracleofMoe.com.

Houston PetTalk Magazine 43

A-Peale-ing Cards

We love everything Kristel Peale! Her original cards are the perfect greeting for all pet lovers. Many styles avail able. 5 cards and 5 envelopes in a box, $15 per box. Find all 28 in Etsy Shop: KristelsColors.

Tinkle All TheWay

The City Loo is a chic modern indoor and outdoor pet potty solution for your dog to potty on their schedule whether it’s with a potty pad, dog potty grass, or what ever your pet prefers. Perfect for dogs 15 pounds or under, The City Loo is customcrafted and made out of medium-density fiberboard with clear acrylic walls, stainless steel hinges, with an interchangeable dog door entrance and comes in the color black or white. Get yours at TheCityLoo.com.

Santa, I've Been

Your Pup Will Be Sleigh-in’ It In GRRRCI HolidayWear

For the dog with a sense of style and fun, this soft cotton, skateboardingthemed tank will definitely turn heads in the neighbor hood FIR sure! Machine wash, lay flat to dry. Find yours, or many other stylish selec tions at Pucci Cafe, 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd. Ste. N200, Katy 77494. Stay awhile and enjoy a glass of premium wine or a Third Wave espresso while you shop. Or, if you are pressed for time, shop online at puccicafe.com.

Bring On The Snow

Not only can stockings be personalized so everyone feels special during the holidays, but so can your pet’s festive Santa Paws bandana! Handmade with faux fur and velvet, your pet will shine with holiday spirit wearing this personal ized adornment that is perfect for holiday parties or fam ily photos. Etsy.com Shop: PersonalizationMall.

44 www.houstonpettalk.com

A Lil' Touch Of Festive

Adding a touch of festive to your pup’s collar is an easy way to get into the holiday spirit. This felt poinsettia is easy to attach to any collar via the velcro strap. Two sizes available, Small and Large. Shop for yours at Pucci Cafe in LaCenterra, Houston’s newest swanky boutique for the pampered pet, located at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd. Ste N200, Katy. And while you're there, have a delicious espresso, cold beer, or premium wine to kick off the holidays! puccicafe.com

Your List

Kizik is THE original hands-free shoe, making slip on and off super easy for all of those dog walks throughout the day. Just step in, stomp down on the heel, and it pops securely into place. No bending, no tying laces. No hands. Shop for your dog walker and choose from many styles at Kizik.com.

purveyor Luna Pet Jewelry has stunning yet affordable creations to adorn your pet this Yuletide season. These elegant creations will make your pup stand out at your holiday party or for holiday photos. View these pieces and more at luna-pet-jewelry-2.myshopify.com.

Stuff My Stocking

The Doggie Express has many op tions when it comes to Christmas and Hanukkah gifts for your special 4 legged furriend. An excellent choice to stuff your pup's stocking or to bring a hostess gift to a holiday party, these delicious morsels are made locally by barkery The Doggie Express who also offers Christmas gift boxes (large and small), starting at $30. In addition to treats, cakes, jerky and more, clients can reserve The DEX Barkery and Boneyard for your Howliday party! Visit them at 1402 W 34th St. in Houston or shop online at TheDoggieExpress.com.

Houston PetTalk Magazine 45
WWW.WRIGHTPAWN.COM Custom Jewelry | Repairs | Cash Loans WRIGHT Pawn & Jewelry Co. 281.882.3577  6218 Westheimer, 77057 FIND SOMETHING Fabulous Proud Supporters of Citizens for Animal Protection 14700 ALMEDA RD. HOUSTONHUMANE.ORG VOLUNTEER Be a part of a life saving mission & make a difference in a homeless animals life. @HoustonHumane Sign up today at HOUSTONHUMANE.ORG We would NEVER LEAVE YOU HANGIN’ Without The Latest In Houston Pet News Sign Up For our Bi-Monthly Newsletter and get the latest news , events , behind-the-scenes Images of our photoshoots , sponsor spotlights , casting calls , and more! Go to HoustonPetTalk.com Go to HoustonPetTalk.com 46 www.houstonpettalk.com




Ask your veterinarian to evaluate your dog’s joints today. ©2016 VCA Inc. VCA logo is registered trademarks of VCA Inc. or its affiliated entities.
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Pancreatitis Holiday Fatty Foods Can Be A Culprit

Holidays! Food, food and more yummy food. For humans, it is a time of rich treats and wonderful indulgences. Sometimes, our pets want to “share” these tasty offer ings, too. The problem is that many of the foods we eat over the holidays are high in fat and for our dog and cat friends who eat these fatty foods, it can mean more than an upset stomach…it can actually cause a very painful and serious condition called pancreatitis.

Pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas, which helps digest food and control blood sugar, becomes inflamed. The most common triggers for pancreatitis are fatty foods.

Signs that your pet has pancreatitis and needs immediate care may include: nausea or drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, lethargy, fever, and dehydration. There may also be blood in the vomit and/or stool.

If you notice symptoms of pancreatitis, take your pet to the vet straight away. A physical exam and diagnostic tests will help determine the next course of action. Treatment will include: medications to

control pain, reduce inflammation, and pre vent nausea/vomiting. Your pet may also need to be hospitalized and placed on IV fluids to restore hydration levels. In order to allow the pancreas time to recover, food and water are usually withheld for at least 24 hours and after this recovery period, a bland diet will be administered so that the easily digestible food provides nourishment while keeping the inflamma tion down.

Safe holiday treats include white meat turkey (no skin or bones), plain potatoes, pure pumpkin, a small amount of cheese and plain vegetables. Skip the butter, gravies and other high fat additives and always keep in mind any food allergies your pet may have.

Make sure that all guests and family members understand the importance of not sneaking your pet(s) treats and be sure

to also keep the trash cans out of reach of curious cats and dogs.

Pancreatitis can be life-threatening without treatment so please stick to healthy holiday treats for your furry table guests and if you begin to notice symptoms of this very painful illness, seek veterinary care immediately.

At VERGI, we see pancreatitis year round. It can be caused by factors other than fatty foods, too. Especially around the holidays, more patients with pancreatitis –usually dogs- are admitted for care. Help keep your pet healthy this holiday season by limiting fatty foods (and remember-no alcohol, xylitol, chocolate, turkey bones, high sodium foods, sugary foods, macada mia nuts, onions, garlic, caffeine). If your pet does become ill or injured, remember we are here 24/7 and 365 days a year for you and for them!

48 www.houstonpettalk.com





Dr. Bradley Simon and Dr. Chanda Miles
renowned lecturer, Dr. Simon has published many journal articles, and has co-authored many book chapters on small animal anesthesia and pain management.
control of pain from dental or periodontal disease is one of the reasons pet owners seek care. As a specialist, my role is to provide the most modern, safe and appropriate pain-relieving therapies for your pet. Working at VDS provides me this opportunity.”
of work, Dr. Simon enjoys spending time coaching the Texas A&M University Ice Hockey and Texas Outlaws Hockey teams. He lives an active lifestyle with his wife and three kids.
VDS, we put your pet’s comfort and safety at the forefront of everything we do. Here in Katy, you’ll find a Texas-style warm and welcoming environment. Endodontics | Extractions | Jaw Fracture Repair | Malocclusions | Oral Cancer | Orthodontics | Palate Surgery | Periodontics | Prosthodontics & Restoratives | Salivary Glands 1437 FM 1463, Ste 120 | Katy, TX 77494 By appointment: Monday – Thursday: 7:30am – 7:00pm | 346.257.6725 | katy@vdsvets.com | vdsvets.com We are proud to welcome board-certified veterinary anesthesiologist Dr . Bradley Simon to our team . Great oral care for your furry friend isn’t easy. But it can be. Locations: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Texas Houston PetTalk Magazine 49

Adopting Senior Pets…

Why It May Be A Great Option For You

Adopting a new pet into your family is an exciting time, how ever there are a lot of things to consider beforehand. Is your family looking for a certain breed or breed mix?

Where will this pet live, and will it have a large yard or no yard?  Would your family be better suited to a younger pet? Are there a lot of stairs in the house? Does the family have time to train the new pet?  If your answers were no to the last three questions, then choosing to adopt an older pet may be a good option for your family.

Older pets (cats or dogs) come with many advantages.  Most older pets have a more sedentary lifestyle which means they do not require as much exercise and

play time as a younger pet. They are less likely to get into trouble in the house if they are left alone for many hours during the day, tending to be less destructive than younger more rambunctious pets.

When considering adopting an older pet, one must also consider the future pet's home environment. If the house has many levels and only stairs to get from one level to another, adopting an older, larger dog may not be the best option.  As pets age they can have trouble going up and down stairs due to arthritis. Therefore, looking at where the pet will live should be a major consideration.  If you do live in a home with a lot of stairs, you could consider adopting an older small dog or cat that could easily be carried between the floors if needed.

Many older pets can adapt well to living in a new environment if they are introduced to other housemates appropri

ately. It is recommended that you discuss this with the rescue organization(s) you are working with.  If you are looking for a specific breed to adopt, there are many breed-specific rescue groups. Performing an internet search with your city and the breed can help you locate these groups.

While there are many perks to adopting older pets, sometimes they will already have health concerns compared to younger pets.  Families do have to be pre pared to have routine check-ups with their family veterinarian in order to keep them happy and healthy.  Many rescue organiza tions will know about chronic diseases at the time of adoption, which should give you time to consider whether the pet will be the right fit.  Age is not a disease, and many of these pets have many more years of love to give. Consider adopting an older pet today!

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Pet Insurance A Guide To Saving Money

Several years ago, my puppy, Wrigley, came down with a genetic disease that required expensive medication to stabilize. Thankfully, my pet insurance covered Wrigley’s monthly prescription costs. Over the years, I have heard countless stories from other pet owners who have encountered similar serious pet health concerns, and who have struggled to understand how pet insur ance can work for them.

58.2% of Texan households own a pet, and with rising costs being the talk of the town, it is important for pet parents to know how to save money with pet insurance and give your pet the best care possible.


This year, amidst a surge in inflation, it is probably not too difficult for pet parents to imagine their four-legged friend need ing a costly vet treatment. Most vet bills these days range from $250 to $5,000 or more.

Pets are living longer, veterinary treat ment is expensive and the average cost of living is rising. Pet insurance can be a lit eral lifesaver since one in three pets need emergency treatment in any given year.

By enrolling in pet insurance, pet parents can get reimbursed 70%, 80%, 90%, or 100% of covered costs for an unexpected accident or illness after their deductible is met. Pet insurance grants pet parents peace of mind knowing that they can focus on care rather than costs.


Most pet insurance reimburses you for covered veterinary costs after you have paid your vet bill.

1. You treat your pet at the vet for an unexpected accident or illness and pay your bill.

2. You submit a claim with your insurance company.

3. You get reimbursed in a week or two based on your policy’s details.

Because pet insurance usually works on a reimbursement model, most pet in surance plans work at any licensed veteri narian in the U.S. So, there is no “network” to worry about.

It is important to note that no pet insurance will cover a pre-existing condi tion. If your pet does have a pre-existing condition, you can still get pet insurance, but treatment related to that specific issue would be excluded from coverage. Ad ditionally, some plans will cover “curable conditions” after a period of time has passed with no recurring symptoms.


Here are some terms every pet owner should know as they shop for the right coverage: Deductible: The amount you must pay before your reimbursement rate kicks in. Reimbursement rate: The percentage of covered costs the insurance company will reimburse you. This can range from 70% to 100%.

Annual limit: The maximum amount your insurance company will pay out each year. Pre-existing condition: A health condition your pet is diagnosed with or displaying symptoms of before you enroll in pet insurance.


When shopping for pet insurance in Texas, it is important to know which health

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Policyholders must pay monthly or annual premiums to keep their pet insurance active. Vari ous factors impact the price of pet insurance. On average, the cost of pet insurance for a dog is $41.65/mo and $20.68/mo for a cat - but the actual cost can be higher or lower depending on where you live, the age and breed of your pet, what discounts you qualify for, and how you customize your policy.

Here is a breakdown of how monthly pet insurance costs vary across Houston, San Antonio, and Austin:

conditions your pet’s breed is most at risk for and decide which level of coverage is the right fit for your financial needs.

You will want to compare how each pro vider covers the conditions affiliated with your pet’s breed-specific health risks. You will also want to compare prices from top providers and how those prices differ as your pet ages.

Remember, pre-existing conditions are not covered by pet insurance, so you should avoid switching providers once you enroll. It is important to choose the best deal when you first enroll and stick with that plan for your pet’s lifetime in order to avoid coverage issues.

The American Animal Hospital Association recommends using a trusted resource like Pawlicy Advisor to compare plans side-byside and speak to licensed insurance experts who are not representing or selling a single provider.

FIND THE BEST PET INSURANCE WITH PAWLICY ADVISOR (Recommended by the American Animal Hospital Association)

I know firsthand how exhausting and con fusing finding the right pet insurance plan can be. After speaking with hundreds pet owners and veterinarians across the country about how the pet insurance experience could be

improved, I co-founded Pawlicy Advisor.

Pawlicy Advisor is recommended by the American Animal Hospital Association as the Preferred Business Provider for pet insurance. Pawlicy Advisor is a 100% free service that provides personalized recommendations to match pet owners with the right pet insurance based on their pet’s unique information and offers side-by-side quote comparison all in one place.

See which pet insurance is best for you by visiting Pawlicy.com today.


Woody Mawhinney, CEO and Co-Founder of Pawlicy Advisor, was relieved when his pet insurance covered his Shar Pei’s monthly pre scription costs. However, many veterinarians and pet parents in his community shared with him the difficulties they faced when evaluat ing options. As a nationally licensed insur ance producer, he launched Pawlicy Advisor as the first independent U.S. pet insurance marketplace to simplify the insurance shop ping experience by providing breed-specific analysis, more thorough comparison, and a streamlined education experience. Pawlicy Advisor is now recommended by the Ameri can Animal Hospital Association.

Houston PetTalk Magazine 53
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Conservation Corner

Two Lapwing Chicks Born At Houston Zoo

As appreciative supporters of nature and wildlife, we at Houston PetTalk want to promote education and conservation of the world’s animal population. Each month we bring you information on conservation efforts that are of special interest or have some connection to Houston through the Houston Zoo. This issue, we highlight the hatching of lapwing chicks. Look for other upcoming conservation stories so that you too can help save a species.

It’s a girl and a boy! Just one day after celebrating its 100th anniversary, the Houston Zoo welcomed its first animals of its next century. On May 1, 2022, one south ern lapwing chick hatched making her the first animal born in the Zoo’s second centennial. Just two days later, her brother hatched. They female chick has been named Lizzie and the male chick was named Earl. Both of the names are significant to the Zoo’s history and honor two of the Zoo’s first animals, American bison.

The parents of these two chicks are criti cally important as they are the only breeding pair of southern lapwing birds in the Associa tion of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) population in North America.

Southern lapwings are the national bird of Uruguay and are the only wading bird in South America with a crest, the little plume of feath

ers on the back of their heads. The shorebirds have long legs, thin toes specifically designed to walk on sandy beaches and their beaks are long and pointed for poking into the sand for insects. They have a grey head with an unmistakable black marking on their forehead. The birds also have a bright red spur on each wing used to defend themselves when they feel threatened in the wild.

They are commonly found around ponds, lakes, rivers, streams, and grasslands. They eat mostly insects but have also been seen to eat crustaceans, mollusks, and small fish.

This species has been observed to go to extreme lengths to protect their nesting site. Both parents are known to sit on the eggs and guard the nest. If a predator is nearby one parent will move away from the nest site and pretend to be wounded. This will draw the

attention of the predator sensing an easy prey and the parent will use that to lure the predator away. Once far enough away from the nest, the bird will then escape and return to the nest until the eggs hatch.

Guests can visit the first animals of the Zoo’s new centennial in the Savanna Aviary of South America’s Pantanal exhibit.

By coming to the Zoo to meet Lizzie and Earl, guests are helping to save wild birds. A portion of each Zoo membership and ticket helps the Zoo provide support for replanting trees in South America. The Zoo is also helping birds by serving Bird Friendly coffee.

Bird Friendly coffees are grown in a way that provides shelter and a variety of foods for birds and other wildlife.

Photos By: Houston Zoo
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Houston PetTalk Magazine 57

Quillwork is a form of textile embellishment tradition ally practiced by Indigenous peoples of North America that employs the quills of porcupines.

Why I Love Animals is a monthly feature written by our Editor with the mission of educating the public on the value of all species.


S ay hello to a long time resident of the Houston Zoo, Ernie the porcupine. Just surpassing 15 years old in September, Ernie is a part of the zoo’s Ambassador Program and has helped educate the public about porcupines and wildlife in general for many years. Located within the Houston Zoo at the John P. McGovern Children’s Zoo, Ernie is a fan favorite and he spared no amount of charisma during our photo session. He was happy to show his behaviors including a very charming wave!

As a North American porcu pine, Ernie has over 30,000 quills on his body covering every part of him except his belly, face and hands. Quills are modified hairs formed into sharp, barbed, hollow spines. They are used primar ily for defense, but also serve to insulate their bodies during

My first time to hold a quill... thankfully by choice!

winter. You may have heard that a porcupine can “throw” their quills but this is actually not the case. The quills are normally flattened against the body and in this posi tion are less easily dislodged but when threatened, they contract superficial muscles causing the quills to stand up and become easier to detach from the body, especially when the tail is swung toward an attacker. The barbs at the end of the spines lodge in the flesh of a victim. Ouch!

The second largest rodent in North America (beavers are the largest), porcupines are herbi vores, dining on leaves, grasses, twigs, buds and the bark of the same trees these nocturnal animals hide in during the day to sleep. They are also known to be slow-moving and nearsightedprobably a good reason to move about at night.

Typically living a solitary life (unlike most herbivores), the North American porcupine has a few interesting defense behav iors. First, they have a strong warning odor which can be increased when agitated. Second, an adult porcupine can bristle its quills, displaying a white stripe down its back, and use its teeth to make a warning, clacking sound. As noted previously, with a tail swing, an attacker can end up with a face full of quills. Lastly, the porcupine can evade a preda tor by climbing a tree.

Quite an unusual creature, porcupines have captured human attention throughout history. Don't miss your chance to meet a North American porcupine at the Houston Zoo and see their unique design up close and personal!

PhotographybyPrudence.com Ernie shows of his talents for a treat, offered by zookeeper Daniel Ortega.
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