Those of you pups out there who are always looking for good, tasty and healthy treats, keep reading! Gerri is based in Louisiana and ships her cookies all over the USA, and any other countries that will allow processed foods to be sent via airmail. Last year I sent my best friend Zim and his brother and sisters Happy Hearts Cookies for Christmas, and boy were they excited! Anyway without further ado, here is the interview with Gerri. HM is me, GD is Gerri, just in case you were wondering.HM: Tell me a little bit about yourself and your pups, Gerri.
GD: A little about me, the dog cookie baker? Well, as you can tell, I love my dogs very much and I like to bake, and I really enjoy creating dog cookies. I’m very fortunate to have a husband that supports this little business venture (which costs more than it makes). I do take care of our household that includes me, hubby, and three dogs. The three pups of this family are MayaMarie, a small Siberian husky with terrible tummy issue, who is the reason for creating the HH dog cookies; Bella, she’s an all white Siberian husky, who is now bigger than MayaMarie, and Missy, my “old girl” who is a shepherd/husky. We live in modest house, and have renovated everything in it ourselves. We even fixed our roof after a storm. I used to do a lot of crafts and hope to start a couple of projects this summer that should be fun. I used to be legal secretary, but after 30 years, I have resolved to being retired. Hubby is a mechanic and is currently restoring an old Porsche 944. Helping him find parts on eBay has been fun.
Phantom can't talk - he's too busy eating a Happy Hearts cookie!
HM: Why did you start Happy Hearts Cookies?
GD: Because MayaMarie has such terrible tummy issues. She can not eat processed dog food, so I have to cook for her and I felt so bad that she could not have any treats. Since I like to bake, I decided to make her some cookies. I did research on flours, fruits, and all sorts of ingredients. She has never complained. She has a serious sweet potato addiction and when I cook the sweet potato to prepare it to make sweet potato cookies she will sit and watch it cook and woo woo to it. Of course when it’s done, I have to cut a piece off and let it cool so she can taste it before it goes in my cookie mix.
HM: What’s so good about Happy Hearts?
GD: I’m gonna be bold and say because I make them. They taste good and are made in my kitchen by me only. A lot of personal time goes into every batch of cookies.
HM: Why are you different to other dog cookie companies?
GD: I use fresh, healthy ingredients that I use for my own dogs and myself. I take the time to ask if your dog is allergic to something and I will change up the recipe. I even do “special request” recipes. My quality control is controlled by me, personally. I actually taste whatever ingredients I use and the finished product has to be liked by me and my three taste testers. And to make an order even more fun, you always get a free bag of fun shapes with every order.
HM: Do you have government approval and all that formal stuff?
GD: Oh yes! I actually send my cookies to the LA Dept of Agriculture and have the lab analysis done. Once I get that info back (takes about a month) I send in the proper paperwork to another section of the Dept of Agriculture to have that cookie registered. I even have a manufacturer number. I just got in my paperwork to renew my license and my current menu of cookies. I’m actually legal too! I’m incorporated and pay taxes. HH could use a good bookkeeper, file clerk and paper shredder, so if any pup or kitty out there wants to work for cookies, I’m interested.
HM: I have a friend whose dog has food allergies. Are you able to help out pups with that problem?
GD: Most definitely. That seems to be my most requested service. Tell me what you can and cannot have and I’ll create a dog cookie for you. I'm always creating new recipes so all you have to do is ask.
Steve and Kat always sit pretty for Happy Hearts cookies!
Well, pups and kitties, that's not all. Tune in tomorrow for part two of the interview, and on Thursday for a special competition. And don't forget to visit Happy Hearts Cookies! Or you can email Gerri direct if you have any questions.