By Kierra Pixler, Managing Editor
Happy Tails Boarding and Grooming located in Belton is premier in taking care of all your pet grooming services. They offer a variety of services that include grooming, boarding for cats and dogs with spacious areas, an outdoor play yard, training sessions, as well as pick up and delivery.
Stacy Berry owns and runs the grooming shop and says that her love for animals started at a young age. With over 25 years experience in this industry, Berry exercises a passion for grooming and taking care of the animals that frequent her facility.
“At a very young age I had a natural ability to work with dogs and other animals,” said Berry. “By age 12, I was training and showing our Boxers in obedience and was responsible for their care. I would volunteer at our local vet to better educate myself and learn all that I could.”
Starting out as a kennel tech at a Veterinary office helped Berry to better her handling skills, develop a sense of working with the animals as individuals and how to recognize the different temperaments that they have.
“While working here, I observed the groomer that worked there and had a big interest in learning. I dove right in and started grooming,” said Berry.
Over the course of 26 years, Berry managed a vet clinic, worked as a vet tech for exotics, emergency clinics, and small and large animal hospitals all while still grooming.
“I moved to Texas in 2003 as I had met my future husband Randy Berry in VA, where he was a professional horse trainer and riding instructor. Randy was born in Killeen but grew up in Belton. Upon Randy’s dad health failing we moved to Belton. I worked as a vet tech for Salado Pet Care and started grooming 1 day a week when the vet did not come in. My grooming clientele started growing a lot, and I decided to leave the clinic and start my grooming shop at our farm in Belton.” said Berry.
Having their shop on their private farm ensures that each pet gets the individual attention that they need, along with plenty of space to play and not be cooped up in a kennel all day.
“We are back in Belton at the farm, and now Happy Tails is our new grooming and boarding facility. It is on the smaller side, but that is how I want it. With all the years spent in the animal field there were never enough time or staff to spend time with the boarders.” said Berry.
Berry also started Lend-A-Heart Ranch & Rescue, a non-profit animal rescue program. Their main goal is to help last chance animals in need or animal whose time is running out at kill facilities.
“We work closely with Bell County animal control locally, but also help wherever else an animal is in need,” said Berry. “From horses to guinea pigs, we strive to improve their lives and place them in permanent loving homes. Our animals are fully vetted, evaluated for temperament, and we work with these animals daily in order to get to know them. That is a tremendous help in pairing them up in the right homes.”
Her long-term goal is to help reduce animal population through public awareness and education starting with our youth.
“We plan to visit schools, start a horseback riding program and allow the animals to help people in need as well through therapy work. We are always in need of volunteers, funding, foster homes and looking for land or a facility to expand,” said Berry.
For more information on Happy Tails and Lend-A-Heart, please contact Berry at 254-624-9678.