Owner: Brie Anne
Location: Rocky Mount, NC
Spoiling my pup Opie is a no-brainer for me and, like many other dog lovers, I’d sacrifice items for myself to get him anything from healthcare to a new toy. Needless to say, gourmet dog treats was a typical area for me to splurge, especially since I grew up in Kansas City, where Three Dog Bakery kind of started the whole gourmet dog treat trend. In Kansas City, there are plenty of stores with all sorts of goodies, but when I moved to North Carolina I realized the selection was miniscule. I began experimenting with recipes and my passion for it blossomed.
After two layoffs in the journalism industry, I realized despite having a genuine love of reporting, it was unlikely to be the field I retired in. I always loved the idea of opening my own business, but it wasn’t until I visited a North Carolina town with my partner, Brandon, that I realized a gourmet dog treat business really is what I wanted. I did research and found out that there really is a market for this business and the trend isn’t going away anytime soon, so having a barkery was the perfect way for me to share my passion with others.
I’d like to highlight Opie, an 8-year-old Lhasapoo, and Boxers Max and Lady as the inspirations for Kansas Sweetie Barkery.
Currently Kansas Sweetie Barkery is a face-to-face and Internet based business. We market our treats through a vast network in our local community built through very public professions, including my job as a reporter. Face-to-face sales also include displays at local farmer’s markets, fairs and festivals. When it comes to internet sales, word of mouth and social media are instrumental. We utilize Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and our website to get the word out about events, new products, contests and upcoming holidays.
Our name was actually developed through brainstorming with my partner, Brandon. I knew I wanted to capitalize on my upbringing in Kansas City and all the city is known for, such as BBQ and Jazz & Blues. Brandon pitched Kansas Sweetie Treats, but we switched it to “Barkery” to better convey the true nature of the business. It is amazing how many people have never heard of a “barkery” before, but smile as soon as they realize we offer gourmet ways to treat their pooches.
We don’t have a “most popular treat” at the moment. We follow our customers and bake and develop dog cakes and dog treats according to their needs and requests. Our website has photos of each of our individual treats while our Facebook page has some shots of the process to make the treats.
I think our Red Meat Ruby Slippers is a unique product idea. These dog treats are modeled after the shoes worn by Dorothy in the “Wizard of Oz”. They are beef-flavored and decorated with colored sesame seeds. We have a special Oz photo contest associated with these treats.
We do presentations at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Nash/Edgecombe Counties about entrepreneurship. We have the children from the club decorate treats with what they want to be when they grow up. $1 from each sale is donated back to the club to help support the budding entrepreneurial dreams.
Visit us: Kansas Sweetie Barkery
# # #
Visit K9Cakery.com for dog bakery supplies and the award-winning Fido’s Frosting, the all natural yogurt dog treat frosting and icing that does not melt!