Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tips for Being a Defensive Dog Walker

Houston Pet Talk Magazine has asked me to write another article. You can find it in the January/February edition.

1. Get the “Big Picture” while you walk. Always be aware of your surroundings, and constantly scan the ground for trash, chicken bones, and glass. If you see a questionable dog or person in your path, calmly go in another direction. Keep your guard up and trust your intuition!

2. Watch out for vehicles. Look both ways before crossing the street, and be mindful of cars turning in your direction. Even though you may have the right of way it doesn't mean that drivers know, or will observe it.

3. Use a leash that can wrap around your waist or clip to your belt. This is important should your dog catch you off guard by pulling unexpectedly, or if you fall and have a medical emergency which renders you incapable of keeping your grip. (On this note, you'll also want to avoid retractable leashes since they can't be clipped onto your waist, and have been known to break)

4. Carry the following items with you:
*Extra leash.
*Multi-tool device. (The blade can cut a tangled leash; tweezers/pliers will remove thorns and burrs)
*Cell phone with emergency numbers.

5. If you have to make a call or send a text, stop in a safe clear place, and make it brief. Do not walk and text at the same time; this is extremely dangerous! It's good to get to know the area you want to walk your dog in ahead of time, however, should you get off-course, GPS on your phone is good to have.

6. Make sure you have a veterinary first aid kit in your home and car.

7. When traveling in your car, be sure your dog is buckled in securely. Have towels, water, travel bowl, extra leash/harness, and emergency vet information ready at all times.

As Benjamin Franklin said, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail”. Be sure you're ready for anything by being prepared the next time you and your dog go on a walk.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Testimonial by Kevin


I'm on the road 52 weeks a year touring with a Broadway musical. I travel with my Whippet, Seamus and am constantly looking for good pet care for him in the cities we play. I've seen it all, and have even written, and had published, an article on traveling with pets. In Houston you are lucky to have one of the best dog walkers in the country. Seamus adored Nicole right from the start and I never worried for a moment that he wasn't in the best of hands - safe, playing hard and returned to me exhausted and happy. Nicole was also excellent with communicating with me about my often changing schedule and was extremely flexible. Use Lucy Goo - you and your dog won't be disappointed.

Testimonial by Christina


I travel with my dog Jetson all over the USA working on the Broadway Musical 'Wicked". Lucy Goo Pet Sitting was a lifesaver for me during our 6 week stay in Houston! Nicole was able to accommodate my out of ordinary schedule and be fully committed knowing we were only able to use her for 6 weeks. Jetson loved their time together and I always looked forward to coming home and reading about the many adventures he had with Nicole. I use pet sitters all over the country and Lucy Goo far and away was the best service I have found anywhere. Houston pet owners really have a gem in Nicole and her services with Lucy Goo! Thank you for everything and we Miss You!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Greener Side of Pet Ownership

I thought that as my first post, I'd share an article I wrote for this month's Pet Talk Magazine.

The Greener Side of Pet Ownership
Five Quick Tips for Becoming and Eco-friendly Pet Owner

There are many ways to help keep our environment clean and beautiful. However, most of us live our lives at such a pace that we rarely have time to stop and smell the roses, let alone lend them a hand. When I was little girl, I developed a love for animals that began with my brother's little pet minnow, Scooter. As I grew older and my affinity for animals grew, so did an awareness of environmental issues. So when I decided to start my own pet sitting business, I sought to combine these two elements. Because a healthy environment is a green environment. So, slow down life a bit, smell those roses and take a moment to read on to see how you, too, can become an eco-friendly pet owner.

1.Adopt a pet. Most pet stores are supplied by an industry that is notorious for running “puppy mills” and other abuses. Local humane society and rescue organizations have an abundance of loving animals who need good homes. Go the extra mile and adopt an adult dog or cat. My dog and cat were full-grown rescues when I adopted them and they have been warm, loving, wonderful pets full of character and love.

2.Spay or Neuter your pet. Overpopulation of strays is a huge problem in our country. Over 3 million animals are euthanized by shelters every year. This number would be greatly reduced if pet owners would spay and neuter their pets. Spaying and neutering is also beneficial to both male and female cats and dogs. For instance, spaying females prior to their first heat cycle nearly eliminates the risk of breast cancer and prevents uterine infections, cancer, and tumors. Neutering males prevents testicular cancer and enlargement of the prostate gland, and greatly reduces their risk for perianal tumors. Males will also be much less likely to roam far from home once neutered.

3.Compsost your pet's waste, or use biodegradable doggie-doo and kitty litter bags. Reusing plastic grocery bags to gather animal waste only supports their manufacture. These bags and their contents wind-up in a landfill where both will be preserved for the next 100 years. If you have plastic grocery bags in your home, do reuse them- but not for garbage and animal waste. When you're done using the bags, take them to a recycling center. (And next time you're at the store, bring in your own grocery bags.)

4.Buy green pet products. Did you know that although dogs use their mouths to play with and chew toys, the FDA does not regulate dog toys? Many plastic toys that can be found at popular pet supply stores are full of chemicals such as lead and formaldehyde. It is up to us as responsible pet owners to purchase products that are healthy for our pets. When shopping for pet products, read the labels and look for all-natural, organic materials such as hemp and organic cotton.

5.Use natural cleaning products. When your pets are indoors, they spend most of their time in close contact with surfaces that we prefer to keep clean, like floors, counter tops and plumbing fixtures. Most cleaning solutions leave residue that can be inhaled or ingested. Natural products present much less of a threat in these situations and can even be cheaper than their chemical counterparts. Vinegar, water, baking soda, and tea tree oil are all natural products that can be used to clean your home.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Testimonial by Nick

Emmett and Little Kitty

Lucy Goo Pet sitting is by far the best pet sitting company I have dealt with. Truly great people who treat your home and pets as their own. We have used Nicole on multiple occasions. Every time we come home from a trip you can tell our cats were well taken care of. They were even able to accommodate last minute plans when I needed to head out of town for the weekend on short notice. If you need a pet sitter, Lucy Goo is the place to go in Houston!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Testimonial by Amy

Odie, Ruben, and Frankie

Nicole, you are the best! Thank you for taking such great care of my boys. I'm much more relaxed while out of town when I know you're there. I think they're counting down the days until they get to see you again!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Testimonial by Douglas

Mingus and Jefferson

Nicole has been a lifesaver, a reliable caregiver to our two precious dogs. Best of all she treats our boys like her own and we always feel comforted knowing she's looking after them. In addition to her daily walks, Nicole has been amazing during home sits while we're out of town. We've been through many dog walkers over the past 7 years and nobody comes close to the service we get from Lucy Goo. I give Nicole and her team the highest recommendation possible.