Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in pet care but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Michael & Pam Modica, owners of Lazy Creek Pet Food Center, located in Lexington, SC, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Locally owned and operated pet food and supplies stores, with two locations in the Midlands of SC. Lexington is a suburb of Columbia, SC, the state capital. It's an upscale community with a diverse population of pet owners. Leesville, SC, is more rural with a true small-town feel. We love both! In business since the mid-90s, we purchased the stores in 2016. We strive to provide superior quality pet products, services, and advice. Our customers recommend us to their friends and family; employees are proud of where they work, and what we do helps PETS live happy & healthy lives. We also offer an onsite boutique and treat bakery in the Lexington store. And offer e-commerce shopping and delivery, in addition to in-store shopping and curbside pickup.

Tell us about yourself

We have always loved and been surrounded by companion animals. And have supported animal rescue organizations our whole adult lives. Michael (spouse) began working in the stores a couple of years before we bought the business, after his retirement, and fell in love with our customers and their pets. I joined the team full-time in early 2020, after my retirement. We, along with an amazing long-term team, look forward to helping people and their pets every single day. Pet nutrition is our specialty, and we are proud to partner with other pet professionals in our area, including some veterinarians, to find the best solutions, products, and services for our customer's pets.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

We are fortunate to have team members who have been with us for a long time, some of whom worked here long before we bought the business. Being able to mentor them and see their growth, professionally and personally, is rewarding to us both. We've elevated the reputation of our local stores, are always bringing in new and innovative products, and are dedicated to giving back to the communities we serve. We're surrounded by big box and regional pet supplies stores but thrive because of how we do what we do. Our loyal customer base has been developed because people do business with people they know, like, and trust. And we value their trust and support.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Balancing work/life can be challenging, especially when spouses work together. And learning to work more on the business rather than in the company can be a fine line. Sometimes, we have to make tough business decisions that our hearts don't always love. But in order to survive and thrive in business, we have to. The Pandemic brought challenges of its own, but it also brought opportunities to be better about all of these things.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Hire and listen to your bookkeeper and CPA.
  2. Hire and listen to your branding/digital marketing team / social media manager.
  3. Fire and ignore naysayers or anyone else who has not been spectacularly successful in the business you want to start/buy. Be the author of your own story.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

As challenging as the business has been at times, we're thankful for this opportunity. Grateful for the amazing people and animals we have met along the way. Thankful for the rescues and other charities that we're fortunate to help and for the sense of community we feel because we have this business.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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