CAÑON CITY – The adoption of a stray dog roaming the streets free led a Colorado woman on her way to a new business.
Beth Black of Cotopaxi, founder of Happy Dogs, saw a red dog walking on US Highway 50 about 10 years ago.
She caught him and picked him up. As Douggie got older, he started having seizures.
“He would have a seizure every other day and we wanted to lay him down because we couldn’t bear to see him go through this,” she recalled.
She started doing research and learned about CBD, the acronym for cannabidiol. It comes from the hemp plant, a cousin of the marijuana plant.
When she first started taking Douggie with CBD, it drastically reduced his seizures to the point where he only has one or two a month and “he’s still alive, we still have Douggie,” she said.
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Black started creating her own CBD dog foods and Happy Dogs was born. The products have different effects depending on the dog, but are said to relieve pain, improve mood, reduce muscle tension and anxiety, improve mobility and increase endurance.
Black designed the company’s logo and labels and launched a website. The company sells around 70 to 80 percent of its orders online to customers across the country.
She also sells the products at the Autumn’s Attic antique and collectors store located at 428 Main St. in downtown Cañon City.
Since then, Black has become a mother dog again to 1-year-old Molly, a Boston terrier. Molly is given a daily CBD treatment to help with her allergy to grass.
Some customers also use the CBD treats on their cats. Each treatment contains 2 milligrams of pure CBD, so they can be cut in half for smaller animals like cats and Chihuahuas.
Schwarz then expanded into human CBD offerings, including a tincture (which can also be given in place of the larger pet treats), gums, and a pain cream. The cream was inspired by someone close to Black who was having trouble managing neurogenic pain caused by a crush injury.
“It got her up and out of her wheelchair,” Black said.
The CBD oil used in the products is locally sourced and tested at zero THC, the psychoactive compound found in marijuana, Black said.
The CBD oil is from Folium Biosciences, which recently opened a CBD extraction center at 717 E. Industrial in Pueblo West. Robert Silver, Chief Veterinary Officer of Folium Biosciences, helped formulate the CBD products.
Black also created a CBD soap for people, but they only sell it on Autumn’s Attic so they can keep up with demand and keep making them in small quantities.
The latest product she added is a CBD-free dog treatment, “for people who want to give constant goodies. They told me they’d like to give their dogs more treats, ”Black said.
The new treats are grain-free and contain chicken, chickpea flour, flaxseed, cane molasses, tomatoes, carrots and turmeric. Turmeric is said to help with joint pain and inflammation, and “tastes good,” she said.
“I wanted healthy goodies that were as clean as possible,” said Black. “They should be as healthy as possible, and since many dogs have grain allergies, they are grain-free,” said Black.
“I love dogs – they are fun and great fun to work with,” she said.
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Customer stories are posted on the company’s website at pbjdogs.com. The “pbj” in the web address is a reference to Douggie’s favorite combination of peanut butter and jelly.
The autumn attic opening times are Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Chief reporter Tracy Harmon covers business and Fremont County news. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at twitter.com/tracywumps.