Starting a dog bakery can be rewarding and profitable. There are various options available based on the level of money and time you want to invest. You can open a store or supply other stores with dog treats and food products, or even provide an online storefront. Make sure that you start the business with the proper supplies and that you know what ingredients to avoid in the products you create.
The most important items to purchase are ingredients to make the animal treats and food products. The base is typically made from grains. Select quality grains such as wheat flour, wheat bran and oats. Depending on the recipe, you may also need oil such as canola oil. Even fruits and vegetables can be used, such as sweet potatoes, bananas and apples. Make sure you don't add ingredients that are bad for dogs such as chocolate, grapes, raisins, alcohol, onions, garlic, yeast dough, Xylitol (artificial sweetener), white potatoes and mushrooms.
Basic kitchen utensils work well for creating dog products. You need baking sheets, mixing bowls, measuring cups--basic baking supplies. Many dog treats are baked. Other recipes call for refrigeration after the product is cooked so you will need to ensure you have containers and room in your refrigerator to store the products.
You will also need cookie cutters in various shapes and sizes, including the classic bone shape. Creating a fun presentation of shapes is an enjoyable part of the business.
Find several good recipes. There are many books that provide simple, easy to follow recipes such as, "The Ultimate Dog Treat Cookbook: Homemade Goodies for Man's Best Friend" by Liz Palika, Howell Book House (September 9, 2005). Start with a few recipes and as you gain experience and test the market, you can incorporate more products.
Selling your dog treats and food products is about presentation, but it doesn't have to be expensive. Small brown paper bags can be an excellent starting point for your business. Buy labels and print them with a graphic and your information such as your phone number for re-orders. Resealable plastic bags work well too. They can be "dressed up" with labels, cloth or ribbons. If you sell your products online or have out of town customers, you will need to buy small, strong packing boxes or tins so that the products are intact when they arrive to your customer.