Pet salon

Faith helps Valrico’s new pet salon find a home

VALRICO – Grisel Robles couldn’t believe whose voice was on the other end of the phone when she called the owner of a building where she wanted to open a new business.

Robles and her business partner, Carmen Carrasco, roamed the greater Brandon area for more than six months looking for an affordable location to open a pet salon.

“When I called, it was Alicia,” Robles said, referring to her friend from the Church of the Nativity, Alicia Perez-Sandoval. “It was God who put us here.”

Now Robles and Carrasco have opened their pet salon next to Perez-Sandoval’s Gifts of Faith at 110 Hunter Road.

After approximately nine years of working together at Advanced Veterinary Services in Seffner, Robles and Carrasco celebrated the opening of A Fancy Pet Salon & Spa on June 1.

Since Advanced Veterinary did not offer services such as bathing, nail trimming, and haircuts, Robles and Carrasco wanted to make these options available to their regular customers. The duo also return to Advanced Veterinary on a monthly basis when sedation is required, as this must take place under the supervision of a veterinarian.

A Fancy Pet Salon & Spa sends each male dog home with a tie and their female counterparts receive handcrafted bows from Carrasco. It also offers some supplies and accessories such as shampoos, perfumes and clothes.

The store intends to offer overnight boarding in time for Labor Day. A courtyard dog pool is also possible in the area currently used for walking.

Walk-in people are welcome, but appointments between Thursday and Saturday are preferred. Call (813) 770-2189.

New Lubricants Company Arises from Family Roots

Ryan Spence combined Amalie Motor Oil’s new name recognition with his family’s long-standing mechanical experience to open Velocity Lube & Repair in Brandon.

Located in the same location where his father used the A + brakes and suspension, Velocity offers Amalie brand oil and also does car repair and maintenance in multiple bays with an emphasis on speed and efficiency.

Spence, who also runs a tooling company, said he “wanted to try something different” when he and his wife, Marissa, decided to rent the building from his father and renovate it.

He sees his father as a partner, not a competitor, after A + Brakes and Suspension moved next door to Brandon Boulevard. The family also benefited from a dipstick oil change operation for 20 years.

The Amalie Oil XtermiGator monster truck will be on display for the Velocity launch on June 18 from noon to 3 p.m. at 314 E Brandon Blvd.

The first 100 customers receive a free gift from Amalie. You can request an appointment online at

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