The founders of Doggie Delights, Owen Kefallinos and Grace Gaumer, are baking up fresh, all-natural dog treats and selling them at a local farmer’s market.
If your dog loves treats (and what dog doesn’t?) then two kids in Cohasset want to meet you. The founders of Doggie Delights, Owen Kefallinos and Grace Gaumer, are baking up fresh, all-natural dog treats and selling them at the Cohasset Farmer’s Market.
More than just a fun summer business, Owen, a sixth-grader, and Grace, a fifth-grader, are working to raise money for the Scituate Animal Shelter. Already the business endeavor of Doggie Delights has been able to donate $127 to the local shelter that serves Scituate, Cohasset, Hingham and Hull and has a goal to donate $500.
The project started off when Owen received the dog bone recipe book from his mother’s friend. He made one of the book’s treats and tested it out on his lab-mix dog, Athena. She loved it.Would other dogs feel the same?
To find out, Owen left some of them in his Fairoaks Lane neighbors mailboxes and offered them to dogs he saw along the way. The dogs just ate them up, literally.
Owen knew he was on to something and decided to take the product to the masses, or at least the hundreds of people who flock to the Thursday afternoon Cohasset Farmer’s Market. With the help of his mom, Lisa, they got a permit from the market and his next-door neighbor Grace joined the effort.
Each week they bake up fresh nearly 400 dog treats in at least two different flavors. They bag a dozen of them in bags decorated with the company’s logo and sell them at the market. The treats come in different dog-centric shapes: the classic dog bone, a doghouse and a fire hydrant.
The treats come in different flavors from peanut butter to cinnamon to barbeque, even a “diet” bone for those pups watching their waistline. Each week, the kids cook up a different assortment.
The recipes, gleaned from a colorful picture book, have all natural, human grade ingredients. The treats are even edible by people, but they don’t recommend serving them for dessert at your next dinner party.
“I tried it, but it was gross,” said Grace. But, the dogs all seem to like them, which is a key part of their “marketing strategy.” Owen and Grace take their product to the Common and go up to market visitors and ask if they have a dog. When dogs are with their owners, they offer samples to the furry friend. If the dog approves, they ask the owner to come over to their stand to buy some.
The direct consumer marketing is working. Each week at the farmer’s market they seem to gain in popularity. They now have a logo, a T-shirt with Doggie Delight logo and customized bags. Every week they’ve sold out of the biscuits.
“Some people don’t have dogs, but they like our logo so we’re going to be selling shirts soon,” said Owen, an entrepreneur in the making. He likes the money that comes along with the business and the feeling he gets when donating a portion to the Scituate Animal Shelter.
Grace, on the other hand, is the natural salesperson of the duo, according to the parents. She animatedly describes the many different types of dogs and owners she runs into at the farmer’s market — there are dogs that don’t eat in public, others are on a diet, and many refuse treats due to allergies.
“But most of the dogs are glad to get a treat,” said Grace.
Both Grace and Owen describe themselves as animal people. Grace lives with three dogs and two cats, while Owen has one dog and two frogs.
Owen and Grace will be selling the treats at the farmer’s market roughly every other week. Their table is located near the Holly Hill Farm stand and Sagestone Beads. When the farmer’s market season ends in October, they plan to sell the treats at Twist in the Village.
A bag of a dozen treats can be purchased for $5 and two bags can be purchased for $8.