Dog Blog A Day for National Pet Month – The Little Feed Company
Question of the day (QotD) – Do you feed your dog a supplement?
This is the end of my second week of my ‘Dog Blog A Day’ series for National Pet Month celebrating all things dog in my local community. Today’s blog features a lovely entrepreneur called Hermione the lady behind The Little Feed Company. Hermione created The Little Feed Company to provide an artisan-style alternative to the major feed manufacturers. Your animals’ health and the quality of ingredients is the core of her business. They support local producers, choosing British ingredients where possible and environmentally friendly packaging. Provenance is important to ensure ingredient quality and ethical production.
And for me the bonus is Hermione and I both went to the same school in East Anglia at different times and have ended up living 5 miles from each other here in Devon. Having photographed Hermione on her horses over the years it wasn’t until we worked together that we realised our childhood connection! The world is a small place. I love to champion her and her work.
Hermione kindly completed my questionnaire for you all to get a more personal insight into The Little Feed Company and the woman behind it.
How does your business help dogs and their people?
We make feed supplements for dogs and other animals to improve their health & happiness. For dogs, our bestselling product is our joint supplement Bounce.
What are your goals and ambitions for your business over the next year and how can we help?
We would like to increase our stockists around the country. For our dog products, we would love to increase awareness about us. We get great customer feedback for all the products, but we just don't have the marketing budget to compete against the big boys.
What was your biggest triumph from the last year?
Our biggest triumph for 2020 has been seeing the business blossom, despite the circumstances we have all been living in. We weren't sure how Covid would affect sales and certainly didn't expect to see such huge growth in our business. I think people have become much more aware of where and how things are made and with our dog products all made in Devon it gives us a unique selling point over other brands which are imported from Europe or the US.
What is your favourite part of your job?
Getting feedback from customers, without doubt. When an older dog who is feeling stiff and uncomfortable suddenly gets a new lease of life due to our product it is the best feeling ever!
What is the funniest thing that has happened in your job?
Probably right at the very start when we decided to build a log cabin in the garden as my home office. The delivery lorry didn't fit down our long, bumpy and narrow lane so we were left with a huge pile of 5 metre beams with only our 6ft trailer to transport them. Luckily there were no health and safety officers on site!
What are your favourite things about your community of clients, customers and supports?
I have definitely picked the right business to be in, I am so grateful for all the support the animal-owning population has given me so far. I have such lovely customers who are always so understanding if a delivery gets lost or damaged. And they all want the absolute best for their animals so what's not to love about them?
If this wasn’t your job, what would you do instead?
A bit tricky as I have worked in animal nutrition since I left university. The dream would be a small holding, a few Jersey cows so I could turn their milk into luxury ice cream, LOTS of chickens and time to spend most of the day on horseback! Oh, and I want Pygmy goats too!
If you were to start a business again, what advice would you give yourself in general?
Businesses evolve and you need to go with the flow a bit. Listen to what your customers like and want and follow their lead. This may differ to what was in your original business plan but does that matter? No!
If you could be any dog, what breed would you be and how does that align with your personality?
This is a hard one for me - I would be a cat as I do love to sleep! But in this case maybe a lazy Labrador, who is loyal and has a healthy appetite...!
What is the earliest dog related memory that you can recall?
My first doggy memories are with our Shetland sheep dog Kirstie. As a young child I would lie on the grass and play dead, she would come over and lick my face to revive me! My family has always had dogs - there is a photo somewhere of an English Setter with my foot in its mouth when I was just a few weeks old! I was smiling of course!
Name three things you couldn’t live without?
My dog, my horse & my family.
I have used Hermione’s products, mostly the horse ones I have to admit, but I highly recommend them as they have all done what she said they would do. Hermione’s breadth of knowledge is just outstanding, she is always happy to help and share.
Don’t forget I would love an answer to our Question of the day (QotD) – Do you feed your dog a supplement? Answer here.
Want to look back over this week of Dog Blog A Day -
Monday – Animal Health Register
Tuesday – Mucky Mutts Grooming
Wednesday – The Dicky Bag
Thursday – Just Whippets Rescue
See you next week.