Gourmet dog treats are popping up on pet store shelves everywhere. They used to be hard to find, but now you can get them almost anywhere. Of course, you still need to be a smart shopper and make sure what you’re buying is actually healthy for your pet. Some brands label their products “natural” or “gourmet” when they are really just traditional biscuit treats full of fillers and preservatives.
Tail Bangers manufactures true gourmet treats, and the proof is in their sales. The business, based in Millsboro, Delaware, was thriving shortly after its creation, and it is still continuing to grow. Lisa St. Clair, owner of Tail Bangers, was among the presenters and panelists at the 2015 Sussex County: Today & Tomorrow Conference last week. At the conference she shared her business’ success story.
She began her tale (pun intended) by telling the audience what is so great about dogs:
“It’s all about your relationship with your dog. We have this tag-line: ‘Be the person your dog thinks you are.’ You can be gone all day long and walk in the door and your dog thinks you’re a rock star…even though he’s had to hold it for 10 hours.”
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Isn’t that the truth? Dogs are loyal, and they love their masters unconditionally. No matter how you treat him, how long you leave him or how little you play with him, your dog will still be excited to see you walk in the door. Most dog owners love their pet in the same way, and Tail Bangers wants to offer pet parents a way to show their pooch how much they love them – with healthy treats that will aid in a dogs overall health and well-being.
All Tail Bangers products are made with top quality, human-grade ingredients. They are baked, decorated and beautifully packaged with a personal touch. St. Clair says that pet parents enjoy the fact that the products are handmade and hand decorated. She believes that her customers can see that more effort goes into the making of her products than in the making of other commercial dog treats.
Tail Bangers started in October of 2003 in a 20 X 20 foot shed at St. Clair’s home. The company was born from her extensive research of dog food and dog food production with human grade ingredients. She did the research to help her own ailing dog and wanted to share her knowledge with pet parents around the world.
The business has been so well received by dog owners that they now provide wholesale gourmet dog treats to stores in every state in the continental United States. There is also a walk-in retail store at the company’s 5,000 square-foot bakery/shipping warehouse located on Betts Pond Road in Millsboro. The name of the company was inspired by St. Clair’s dogs, who would bang their tails against the cupboards in her home while waiting for a treat.
All treats manufactured by the company are made from all natural, human grade ingredients. They are made with 100 percent whole grains, real cheese, real eggs, yogurt, real bacon, fresh ground peanuts and carob. They are made by about 4 dozen employees who prepare the dough, bake the treats, decorate them and box them for shipment.
St. Clair now partners with Pet Supplies Plus and Pet Valu as part of a Plan-O-Gram for their stores. When either of those companies opens a new store, bakery cases full of Tail Bangers products are part of them. Those and many other smaller pet retail stores are equipped with Tail Bangers bakery cases. They are in more than 2,000 stores across the country. She credits her success to the teamwork of her employees and herself. St. Clair says she has done every single job in her company from designing the bakeries to making the treats.