Little Angels Preschool.

Daycare Facility

Little Angels Preschool

909 N. La Cumbre Rd.; 563-0884;

“I want to thank everyone who voted for us,” said Little Angels Preschool Executive Director Mary Lopez. “My staff and I work very hard, as many preschools in town do, to offer a program of love, consistency, and attention to detail. … We all ‘live our jobs,’ which some may say is not healthy, but it makes for a great preschool!” And the best part of that job? “By far, all of the funny things children say to us,” shared Lopez. “They often divulge funny things about their parents that we don’t necessarily repeat outside of our staff circle!”

Runner-Up: Rainbow School

Pet Hospital/Clinic

La Cumbre Animal Hospital

110 S. La Cumbre Rd.; 967-0121;

“We love helping pets and their families,” said Dr. Beverly Holmes and Dr. Eve Kuesis of La Cumbre Animal Hospital. “Our favorite part of our jobs is every wet nose, purr, tail wag, or nuzzle. We strive to offer the best care for every furry friend that we meet. It is truly an honor to have our community see our efforts.” Founded in 1959 by Dr. Francis Knoop, the practice is now owned by Holmes and Kuesis, who added, “This award is a tribute to our talented, hardworking staff for all they do every day. Thank you for trusting us to care for your loved ones!”

Runner-Up: St. Francis Pet Clinic

Toy Store • Children’s Clothing Store

Chicken Little

1236 State St.; 962-7771;

From strollers to sleepers and bottles to breast pumps, plus every sort of onesie, toddler tog, and soft stuffed creature imaginable, Chicken Little has been delighting locals and visitors alike since 1981 (it actually opened in 1979 as “Chicken Lips”). This charming, family-owned shop has got the kids and the grandkids covered, with knowledgeable staff plus a great baby registry service for new parents. A fun place to browse and an easy place to buy, it’s no wonder that Chicken Little is our readers’ pick for best toy store and children’s clothing store for the second year running.

Runner-Up (Toy Store): Peanuts Maternity & Kids
Runner-Up (Children’s Clothing Store): Happy Little Hippo

Kids’ Summer Camp

[See Out & About: Family Fun Spot]


Santa Barbara Tutoring

81 David Love Place, Ste. 222; 973-7463;

Offering private tutoring services in all subjects, as well as assistance for the sometimes-stressful test prep, Managing Director Steven Efada said, “We’re convinced that we offer a better product than our competitors, and we’re glad your readers agree! We love that our growing team takes pride in learning to better serve our clients each and every day.” Grateful for the honor, Efada added, “Thank you! We look forward to continuing to help your family and friends reach their academic goals.”

Runner-Up: California Learning Center


Dr. Saida Hamdani

51 Hitchcock Wy.; 563-6211

All of the best parenting advice I ever got was either through word of mouth or from a pediatrician. For Dr. Saida Hamdani, getting our readers’ nod combines the best of both of those worlds. Her favorite part of her job? “Talking to parents and children. I love to hear their stories. Being the best means being honored by this community as I try to do my best,” said Hamdani, who is affiliated with Sansum Clinic. “It is an exceptional honor to be voted for by readers who are truly independent minded, curious, and insightful. I promise to do the very best that I can in listening, learning, and then using my knowledge to prevent adverse events and maintain good health in all its modalities.”

Runner-Up: Dr. Patricia Erbe

Pet Store

Lemos Feed & Pet Supply

Multiple locations;

Mike Lemos started the business in 1972, delivering hay and other ranch products to his neighbors. Now, almost 50 years later, the Central Coast–based store’s staff still carries every large bag of pet food to each customer’s car and trains the team every month to ensure they know what products will work best for your pet. It’s that kind of customer- and critter-based service (plus the multitudes of chew toys, grooming products, and food choices) that earns Lemos Feed & Pet Supply awards year after year. “My favorite part of my job is being able to help find solutions for pets that improve the life of the pet and of their owners,” said store manager Raymond Padilla.

Runner-Up: Pet House

Dioji cage-free boarding.

Pet Grooming

The Little Dog House

5758 Hollister Ave., Goleta; 964-2446;

“The dogs, of course, are a favorite part of working at the Little Dog House. Every aspect ​— ​from different breeds, different ages, different dog personalities to the different types of grooms ​— ​makes the job fun and never dull. No two days are ever the same, but every day, dogs come in, get groomed, and come to play. Every day at the shop is a favorite day,” said owner Tyrelle Leger. “As a team, we hope it’s apparent when you drop off and pick up your fur baby that we all work together and love what we do. We all share the passion of what we do, how we care for your pooch and always appreciate your patronage and patience.”

Runner-Up: For Paws Salon

Dog Park

[See Out & About: Beach]

Dog Trainer

K-NIne Solutions

126 E. Haley St., Ste. A-8; 451-2458;

The life of a beloved dog trainer is anything but dull. “The dogs! OMG, they can be such goofballs,” said Eric Smith, cofounder/head trainer of K-9 Solutions, which has won Best Of Santa Barbara® honors for four years in a row. “I once had a client with a very highly trained German shepherd come in for more advanced training. The client spent a ton of money on this dog, but the dog wouldn’t do anything she asked. He would just lie there and stare at her. Something told me to just start speaking German to the dog, and bam! He woke right up. We were all very relieved and had a good laugh about it later, but it was pretty stressful in the beginning.”

Runner-Up: Nathan Woods Dog Trainer

Pet Boarding

Dioji K-9 Resort & Athletic Club

Two locations;

If Santa Barbara is a dog paradise, then Dioji K-9 Resort & Athletic Club must be dog nirvana. Offering resort amenities and a variety of grooming options and sleeping quarters, this doggie daycare is really more like a luxury doggie spa. It’s no wonder Dioji is our readers’ top pick for Fido and friends. “First and foremost, thank you for voting us Best Pet Boarding for 12 years in a row,” said Dioji owner Jeannie Wendel. “The title of ‘the best’ is a true honor, and we are so thankful that our continued efforts toward excellence continue to be recognized by the community. We are happy to announce that we now offer the same great cage-free boarding at our newly expanded Santa Barbara facility.”
Runner-Up: Camp Canine