Loss, Baking, An Exciting Opening on The Horizon

Farewell Dad & Sonic

Firstly, a really big thank you for your support over the past few months, the Covid 19 Virus that has caused so much chaos and heartache over the past few months, is now hopefully coming to an end. and we can start to get back to some sort of normality.

On a personal note, as some of you know, I lost my lovely Dad to the Virus, and as he lived in Dorset, the funeral arrangements were very strange as we had to sit apart, and only 8 people could attend.  This felt really cold, as we couldn’t hug each other, everyone was upset, and as such we couldn’t celebrate my Dads life properly.  As a family, we have decided that we are going to have a get together for a memorial service for Dad as soon as we can when this is all over.

Also, I lost my beloved horse Sonic Girl to a hoof ailment, her pedal bone was pressing on the base of her hoof, she was in pain and it couldn’t be put right, so we had to make the very hard decision to let her go to sleep.  What is really lovely is, as we are now on my sister Bev’s farm, we were able to make her a fabulous resting place in the orchard with all her favourite apples.  I can visit every day and pop a Polo mint on their, and its a really peaceful place for reflecting on our wonderful years together.

Throughout all of this, it was being able to bake, which I love, and also seeing others happily celebrating their pets, that kept me going, it was so lovely and so special, and I thank you for that, it was just what I needed.

The New Bakery Shop, Doggie Parties and Camping

We were also kept busy with setting up the new Bakery Shop, and we have had support from the local traders as they were willing to work here as they could easily socially distance themselves, it was just a bit difficult getting all the supplies they required as most of the DIY stores were closed.  Now we are seeing more of the suppliers opening again, we can hopefully start moving forward again.

The Bakery is going to expand to include Doggie Birthday Parties, Doggie Camping and a lovely place just to sit and enjoy your pups company whilst you enjoy a full range of yummy cakes and treats for yourself in The School House Cafe at Sturdys Farm.

We will have a shop with bespoke personalised gifts, lots of lovely accessories, including leads, collars, bandannas, pet beds and of course all of our yummy cakes and treats for pets.  If you would like to showcase any of your products in the shop, please let me know.  One of the suppliers I am really happy to have on-board is Charlie & Boo, they have gorgeous homemade pet accessories.

We are also looking to add suppliers of homemade, bespoke pet soaps. as this will complement our ethos, of natural homemade products, I am sure there are plenty of other items that would fit in with what we are trying to achieve here, so please let me know if you have anyone you can think of.

Hopefully, in about 6 to 8 weeks we will be ready to open at Sturdys Farm, and at the opening, we will have the local press and some editors from your favourite Doggy Magazines to come and have a look at what we have done, and we will be reserving places for all of our VIP Friends who will, of course, have a lovely treat box to celebrate with us.

Royal Mail Hick-Ups

The Royal Mail postal service is still experiencing a few hick-ups in some areas, and orders can take a while to get to you.  I have tried to send the celebration boxes out to you at least two or three days before to get to you, and I thank you for your patience.  The best rate to choose at the moment is guaranteed next day, as we have the ability to track your items.  1st Class postage rate is not guaranteed, and if the parcel is lost, it can take up to 10 days before the post office will look into where your parcel has gone.  If your delivery area is particularly bad, please consider the Guaranteed Next Day rate at checkout.

New Biscuits & Celebrating Summer

There are lots of new biscuits being added to the Website for the summer, and we appear to be very lucky with the weather at the moment here in Lincolnshire. You can browse through the range here.

Lots of love Tarnia

 

 

 

It’s all because of you!

Just a quick note to you as I wanted to reach out and personally thank you!  We would just like to say thank you for being part of our family.  We are grateful for your patronage, your likes and comments on Facebook and Instagram, the like and follows all adds up, and we wouldn’t be here without loyal customers like you.  You could have chosen any other business, but appreciate that you have stuck with the Bakery.

We are looking forward to Valentines Day, and as a reward for your support, we are offering 15% off all our Valentine Range so you can spoil your best friend, who loves to meet you at the door with a wagging tail and sloppy kisses.

Please use this code at the checkout: 66eu29jb

Thank you and have a great weekend with your furry family.

Trading Standards Compliance

As an animal feed provider, we have to comply with the following regulations:

  • The Animal Feed (Hygiene, Sampling, etc, and Enforcement (England) Regulations 2015
  • The Animal Feed (Composition, Marketing and Use (England) Regulations 2015 & EU Regulations (EC) 183/2005
  • EU Regulations (EC) 767/2009
  • EU Regulations (EC) 178/2002

Our registration number with Trading Standards the governing body is GB208RO01940

Our inspection was on the 9th of December 2019 and pleased to inform you we are compliant.  Noted especially at the audit was the cleanliness of our kitchen!

The pet food industry is highly regulated, and this legislation applies equally to what can be described as commercial pet food manufacture on an industrial scale and to smaller scale manufacturers such as myself in a person’s private home.

Legislation on animal feed originates from the EU (rather than coming from the UK) and the overarching principle is that animal feed, including pet food, must be produced in hygienic conditions, and that the finished product is safe, is not harmful to animal or human health and is fully traceable.  The main legislation for the manufacture of pet food, even in your own home is described below:

EU Regulations (EC) no 183/2005 laying down the requirements for feed hygiene, requires that feed safety and hygiene be considered at all stages of the production of pet food, wherever this may be carried out.  The Regulation sets out the operating standards to which all pet food manufacturers must comply.

  • Facilities and equipment
  • personnel
  • production
  • quality control including Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP – Feed Safety , management system)
  • Storage and transport
  • record keeping, including trace-ability
  • complaints and product recall

All pet food manufacturers must also comply with EU Regulation (EC) No 767/2009 on the placing on the Market and used of feed, this legislation covers matters such as:

  • safety and marketing requirements.  Special regard should be given to the species and type of pet you are manufacturing food for
  • stringent labelling, presentation and packaging requirements, including analytical declarations
  • manufacturer responsibilities
  • substantiation of any claims, including nutritional claims
  • prohibition on misleading of purchasers
  • prohibition on making medicinal claims

We hope that all this puts your mind at ease, and please check that other providers of pet cakes and treats also meet the same standards.  Be safe and be aware.

Kind regards, and always with your pets interest at heart, Tarnia

Festive Greetings from V.I.Pets Bakery

May this festive season sparkle and shine and all your wishes come true.

To all our wonderful Customers, Hooman and Pet Friends.

Our wish for you is that the end of this year and the years to come, bring you peace, happiness, good health and prosperity.

We are blessed to have been so busy over the past year, and truly appreciate every single order, so a massive thank you to each and every one of you.

During this special time, we have been busy bees at V.I.P, baking and sending orders all over the UK for your hairy furry loved ones, to open on Christmas Day. The most popular of all our goodies this Christmas has been the Doggy Xmas Bones and over 500 have been sent to lovely pups this year!

On The Agenda For 2020 – A New Amazing Pet-Friendly Place

Lots and lots happening in the New Year, we will be opening our first dog-friendly Cafe Bakery in Saltfleetby, in the Spring, and as we speak there are busy people converting a school into the first of what we hope additional new premises.  The Old School has beautiful surroundings and lovely views of the fishing lake.  There will be cakes and treats for all to enjoy.

This is not a small undertaking, as you can see, (we have a sneak peek of the work so far that I can show you, and how fabulous is that roof?)  There are three other rooms with seating, and the backroom and large sun patio has the view over the lakes, I am getting so excited about it, I cannot wait, more photos will be popped on Facebook as the work progresses.

At home, here in Kegworth, we are planning our next year with the help of Simon, who has been supporting me over the past 6 months.  Boy, does he have some patience lol.  We will see a new range of treats, more articles on health benefits and lots of offers for you to try out our new ranges.

By My Side From The Beginning

There are some of you who have supported me from the beginning, to whom I owe a massive amount of gratitude, you are all superstars. It is because of your orders, shares, telling all your family and friends, that we are where we are today.

Please keep the snapshots coming in – I truly love all the pictures sent in with their happy pets, it makes my day and is a big factor in keeping me going.

Looking forward to 2020 with you all

Kindest regards and much love Tarnia

 

 

I was looking into the benefits of using of Peppermint Oil for dogs

I noticed that another bakery was using Organic Peppermint Oil in their chocolate bars, so I thought, oh, this is new, lets see what benefits if any there are for the dogs and maybe use this for some of the Bakery’s treats.  As always, you start with Google as there is lots of interesting information on Peppermint Oil on the internet, but on Google, all the information was showing that it was not quite the answers I was looking for.

I wanted to check to see which essential oils are beneficial to dogs, but actually found out that most were poisonous, eek!  and unfortunately, on a lot of the internet sites about Oils, Peppermint is listed as one of them.

According to the articles I have read, Peppermint oil can be toxic to pets, whether it is ingested by mouth or used on the skin.  Worst of all, some articles state that people are getting confused with thinking that natural is safe.

Here at the Bakery, we like to check both.  I have seen a Dog Bakery using this for making their doggie chocolate bars, and so now, that is worrying, so please be aware.

This is some of the information found so far.

Firstly, be aware of the difference between the Oil and Extract.

  • Peppermint Extract – they use a solvent for extraction and that is why it is not an Essential Oil.  Its a tincture or infusion.
  • Peppermint Oil – Highly concentrated from plants, and must be produced by steam distillation or expression.

Here is some of the evidence from different sources on the internet:

  • As soon as you Google ‘is Peppermint Oil safe for dogs, the Michelsonfoundanimals.org list shows oils harmful to dogs and the list is Cinnamon, Citrus, Pennyroyal, Peppermint, Pine, Sweet Birch, Tea Tree, Wintergreen, Ylang ylang, Anise, Clove, Thyme, Juniper, Yarrow, and Garlic.
  • They state that generally speaking, essential oils and animals do not mix and Michelson Found Animals doesn’t recommend using any essential oils on your pets.

thehappypuppysite.com has an article stating that Peppermint Oil is not as safe for dogs as it is for humans.  According to the article, there is a huge trend towards natural remedies and aromatic oils, and this trend is filtering through to Pet products.  Organic and Natural are confusing pet owners, and these supplements, oils etc are on the market with little or no way of knowing the potential side effects.

If you are using Peppermint Oil for any reason, please look out for the following symptoms of poisoning in pets, a good rule of thumb is to always be alert to changes in your pets behaviour.  You may be using the oil for Flea Treatments, but look out for the following:

  • Difficulty Breathing
  • Drooling
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Difficulty walking or stumbling
  • Muscle tremors
  • Pawing at the mouth or face
  • Redness or burns on their lips, tongue, skin or gums
  • Vomiting

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beetroot for Dogs

Beetroot are obviously healthy and this applies to Dogs too.  Yep, this root vegetable is not only nutritious, but it can help to improve a doggies coat too.  Allergic reactions are rare with this superfood, but be on the lookout, some people are allergic to Beetroot Juice, and this maybe so for some dogs.

Nutritional information:

  • Vitamin C
  • Folate
  • Fibre
  • Manganese and
  • Potassium

It makes sense to allow your fur friend to enjoy a small amount of Beetroot, as it is low in calories (88% Water) and is a fantastic antioxidant, so can be served as a supplement.

Pets can be fed either cooked or raw Beetroot, either way is not harmful, but lightly boiled or steamed is how you can deliver your dog the most benefits.

But, this is using fresh beetroot, not canned or tinned Beetroot, as your Pup doesn’t need the extra Sodium.  Also, it should be given in moderation if your pet suffers from kidney or bladder stones due to the high Oxalates Factor.  So don’t go overboard, feed pet-friendly portions.

Source: Doctor Stephanie Flansburg Cruz – Veterinary Physician

CanIgivemyDog.com

 

V.I.Pets Bakery 1st Ever Newsletter

Wow – my 1st newsletter to my 1st subscribers – a big thank you to everyone who has subscribed – I know we won’t dissapoint.

Vouchers Coupons and this Weeks Special Offer

This month, buy a premium health treat pot and apply a 10% discount to your entire shopping basket. Just enter the coupon code vip443pots

What’s Been Happening

Some more of the yummy products have gone onto the Facebook shop, and we hope to link them directly to the Website to make it easier for everyone to buy a Celebration Cake or Treat.

Lots of wonderful pet celebrations and I am grateful for each an every order and love to see the pets enjoying their Party Boxes, it makes me feel so lucky to be able to make them.

The Bakery now has the Personalised Bone Biscuits in every pub in the village of Kegworth and also in Guest Houses and Bed and Breakfasts, even in Wales!  It’s lovely to see that they are so pet-friendly.  If you can think of anyone who would be interested in popping them into any of their establishments let me know.  If its a pub, I may have to come and check them out and have a cheeky Gin and Tonic whilst there.

This month will see the introduction of the ‘Premium Range of treats for both dogs and cats.  These biscuits are full of ingredients that have lots of health benefits for your pets, and just to make sure that everyone can understand the advantages of these ingredients, an article on the benefits of those treats will also be published on the Website.

The Big News at The Bakery and Some Secret Unexpected Help

A new website, some tweaks and changes to the Facebook Page and better user experience.  We are pawsome, at some things, but there are still more ideas and updates that haven’t quite got out there in the ‘Social Media’. This is big news and we found some secret expert help right under our noses.

There’s a small business consultant in the village who’s much more than just a web designer. In fact, there’s probably only a handful of people in the county who have an empathetic kind mentoring approach plus technical expertise. If you need some help getting things structured and growing your business, then do yourself a favour and contact Simon at The Indaba Tree – www.theindabatree.com or ask me for an introduction.

New Articles on the Website

The first article is all about Turmeric and the benefits of this Golden Paste for your pets.  This was the first of many herbs/spices to be looked at in the very beginnings of the Bakery.  Initially, to be fair, it looked like the contents of a baby’s first nappy when mixed with Coconut Oil, I started to think ‘this is not looking good’, the taste test was next, and hang on, guess what, it is actually really sweet and tasty, and I even would go as far as to say, I liked it.  So on we go to get the mix right.  Most importantly, adding the Black Pepper (Ground) its a bit like a magic trick when you add Pepper, as it’s only then when you add these ingredients together, you get the ‘Magic Paste‘.

 

 

Would you know which common Garden Mint is harmful to your pet

Unfortunately, yes, one of our beloved garden herbs can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and weakness.  English PennyRoyal Mint, is the culprit, and so this one is best avoided.  There are lots of other varieties that have health benefits for your pets.

Health benefits of mint:

 

Is Chamomile just used for calming your Dogs Anxiety

Chamomile for dogs is one of the safest and most versatile herbal pet remedies and has a broad range of scientifically proven uses.

The attributes of this herb are:

  • Anti-Spasmodic – contains chemicals that relax smooth muscles, including those found in blood vessels and the digestive tract.
  • Carminative (gas relieving)
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Sedative
  • Anti-microbial
  • Wound healing
  • Tonic properties that strengthen body functions
  • Worm expelling – Antihelmintic

We use Chamomile flowers packed into a diffuser teapot, and add a cup of boiling water and let the mixture sleep until it has completely cooled.  This is then added to the biscuit mix.  The unused tea can be used as a soothing skin rinse for itchy, inflamed skin, including flea bites, contact allergies or minor bacterial or fungal infections.  Also, can be used to wipe sticky eyes when mixed with saline water.  So yes, this is one of those very versatile herbs.

As with introducing any new herb, do this slowly and look out for allergies or any reactions and watch for anything out of the ordinary.

*Source WholeDog Journal – August 2019

Why is Pumpkin a Powerhouse of Nutrition for Pets?

Pumpkin has been used for years in American treats, but here in the UK, we rarely see Pumpkin as an addition to the recipe.  As it turns out, Pumpkin has a variety of health benefits for both Dogs and Cats.  * The beautiful golden coloured squash, has proven to benefit digestive tracts when added to your pet’s diet.

Let’s take a look at some of the wonderful benefits:

  • In cats, Pumpkin is particularly good for preventing hairballs
  • Good for pets whose stools are too loose as the fibre in Pumpkin can act as a binding solution through a pets digestive tract, absorbing the excess water and therefore helping with the diarrhoea.
  • Is low in fat, but high in fibre and cholesterol
  • Loaded with Beta carotene, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, and vitamins A & C
  • Full of essential fatty acids and antioxidants that support a healthy urinary tract
  • Can serve as a healthy substitute for fatty treats and foods

Obviously, in the UK, Pumpkin is seasonal, and not available all year round.  Although fresh is always the preferred option, to get around this we sometimes have to use the canned variety.  There are different types of Pumpkin available in supermarkets and so always check that it is pure Pumpkin not the type for Pumpkin Pie.

 

Source * Dr Carol McConnell, Chief Veterinary Medical Officer for Nationwide Pet Insurance