If your pet could speak, what would it say? "Walk me!" "Squirrel!" Or how about, "Is this chow locally sourced?" With the farm-to-table movement in full force here in Richmond, it was only a matter of time before our furry friends got themselves a piece of the action. Owners of canine and feline locavores can now stock up at these Richmond-area pet-food producers.
The Barkery & Catfe
Even the most discriminating pet palate will find something drool-worthy at The Barkery & Catfe (683-9654 or thebarkeryandcatfe.com ). Owners Andrea Finch and Rachel Langley make their treats and pet food to order based on pet/owner preference. That includes all-organic and all-local ingredients sourced from farmers markets and grocery stores, and balanced with veterinarian-approved vitamins and minerals. All products can be purchased online as well as at pet-centric events in the area.
Clementine's Mobile Munchies
Named after owner Ariela Melzer's rescued pit bull, Clementine's ( clementinesmunchies.com ) delivers its fresh-baked dog treats to locations in and around Richmond. You can also find these wholesome goodies at pet-friendly events and farmers markets. Melzer, a former professional chef, uses whole-grain and chickpea dough as well as fresh vegetables and meats in her products, which include biscuits, birthday cakes, cupcakes, cannolis, donuts and more.
Three Dog Bakery
Though it's not a locally owned business, Three Dog Bakery (330-3536 or threedogrichmond.com) does make its decadent doggie desserts on-site in its store at Stony Point Fashion Park. Two pastry cases are filled with freshly baked treats like Drooly Dream Bars, Boxer Brownies, Puptarts and Bulldog Bars. If your pooch prefers savory to sweet, treat it to the Ciao Wow Cheese Pizza. You may be tempted to try a slice yourself.
Mugsy's DogTown Lounge
In addition to taking the extra step of growing its own produce, Mugsy's DogTown Lounge ( dogtownlounge.com ) also barters with local growers at Victory Farms, Amy's Garden and Agriberry. All meat products are sourced from farms scattered throughout Virginia. You can find owner Mugsy Lunsford at the Byrd House and South of the James markets, selling frozen raw ground-chicken recipes for cats and dogs (in compostable containers, of course), as well as the always-popular dried chicken fingers.
If your pet won't turn up its nose at a treat made outside the 804 area code, reward its open-mindedness with something from Sammy Snacks (434-984-5941 or sammysnacks.com ). This Charlottesville producer of dog and cat food can be found in pet-supply stores throughout Richmond. Owner Matt Frey uses only all-natural, human-grade ingredients, with no artificial colors or preservatives in his products, which range from homemade bully sticks and bonito flakes to cookies and kibble.
Also out of town but locally renowned is Pawgevity (540-364-3676 or pawgevity.com ). This all-natural raw food is made in Marshall, Va., using only locally grown, certified-organic ingredients. Socially conscious pets can rest easy knowing that Pawgevity's chickens are pasture-raised, and its lambs are grass-fed and stress-free. The company's strict adherence to the highest standards of quality means no preservatives, no hormones, no mixing proteins, and no synthetic vitamins and minerals. Just raw, fresh, bowl-licking goodness.
If you're not as concerned with locally sourced pet food, but you still want to support a local product, consider a bully stick from Barkworthies (877-993-4257 or barkworthies.com ). Manufactured in Richmond by Top Dog Treats and Chews, these popular, odor-free treats are made of beef, with no preservatives, chemicals and fillers. No, they don't come from Richmond cows, but your dog probably won't complain.