‘I turned my doggy pas­sion into a ca­reer’

Vic­to­ria Stent, 36, founder of Four Legged Fan­cies, shares her busi­ness suc­cess story – and ex­plains how you can do the same

Closer (UK) - - Money -

On 2012, Vic­to­ria I started mak­ing dog treats to sell at her lo­cal farm­ers’ mar­ket. Five years on, her prod­ucts are stocked at Pets At Home, have celeb fans in­clud­ing Georgia May Jag­ger, and she’s gone from mak­ing £50 ev­ery Satur­day to £100k turnover per year.


“I started mak­ing cupcakes at the lo­cal farm­ers’ mar­ket, but it wasn’t orig­i­nal enough to take off,” says Vic­to­ria. “Then, one day, my dogs started sniff­ing around the cakes and I thought it would be brilliant to make dog cupcakes – or pupcakes – so they could en­joy them, too. My par­ents trained guide dogs when I was grow­ing up and we al­ways loved dogs, so I had a re­ally good idea of what they can and can’t eat, which made bak­ing the treats easier. A lot of dogs have sen­si­tive stom­achs, so I wanted to cre­ate some­thing hand­made, wheat-free and healthy, yet de­li­cious and fun. I took the plunge and got DEFRA reg­is­tered [a body that mon­i­tors an­i­mal food stan­dards] and started sell­ing – then Four Legged Fan­cies was born. I had to work part-time to make ends meet, but peo­ple loved the idea from day one so I started ex­pand­ing the range, mak­ing doggy cakes and other treats, and took my stall to big­ger mar­kets and shows. Then a scout found me and Pets At Home asked us to stock them, which was a dream come true.


“These days my par­ents help at the mar­kets and shows, and my dad deals with the mail or­ders and ships the parcels. I’ve also taken on a mem­ber of staff part-time to help me with the cook­ing, be­cause jug­gling a busi­ness and pro­duc­ing all the stock is a huge job. It isn’t easy – I’ve done ev­ery­thing my­self and when you have your own busi­ness it’s a 24/7 op­er­a­tion, but I wouldn’t change it. Do­ing some­thing you love is the best feel­ing in the world.”

Vic­to­ria sells tasty dog treats at her mar­ket stall

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