Imagine the tongue-lolling glee you’ll be met with when you present your fetch-loving dog with a birthday cake in the shape of a giant tennis ball, filled with treats like a piñata. Or for your chew-focused friend, how about an edible replica of their favorite toy? Pups with extra swag may require a 3D portrait with “Happy Birthday Mother Puppers” piped in doggie frosting.
These are just a few examples of the joyful canine celebration cakes offered at Jack’s Snacks, A Dog Bakery based in Warwick. “We are getting ever-more creative with our designs,” says owner and founder Marni MacLean Karro, “though the classic bone-shaped cake remains our most popular.”
The bakery opened in 2004 when Karro and her husband returned to their native East Coast from California, along with Jack, an adopted black Lab-Pit mix who had five owners prior and suffered from fear-aggression.
Fortunately, the couple was up to the challenge of working through his issues. “It was so rewarding to see him grow,” Karro reflects. “All the love we gave, he returned to us tenfold. Jack was the dog love of our lives.” Not to mention the inspiration for her dog bakery business.
“In Los Angeles, I had been working as executive assistant to [actor and comedian] Arsenio Hall. There wasn’t comparable work in Rhode Island, so when we settled in Pawtucket, my husband said, ‘You love baking and you love dogs – you should create a gourmet treat business!’ I made my first batch that very day,” says Karro.
It was a slow start – people were mostly just amused when they saw Karro’s stall at local farmers markets, but her Ginger’s Chicken and Garlic Bone-anza won over the dogs and gradually Jack’s Snacks grew from home-baked trays to professional kitchen status, then an actual brick-and-mortar store. Now, along with snacks and cakes, the shop offers human apparel, dog accessories from RI brands including Hope Rope Co and Up Country, and dog-themed greetings cards and artwork from Tatutina.
It’s a happy place for pooches and humans alike – pups get samples from the Broken Biscuit Jar, and humans find delight in clever product names like Woofie Pie and The Barkcuterie Box.
“Aside from supporting a local Rhode Island business, I think our customers love knowing that we only use the very best ingredients,” Karro notes. “If we need 30 pounds of peanut butter, we call up our suppliers in Providence and they put down the phone and go and grind the peanuts right there and then!”
You certainly don’t need to wait for your furry friend’s birthday to taste-test this freshness – peanut butter squirrel cookies are available all year round!
To shop their full range of products, visit Jack’s Snacks, A Dog Bakery in Warwick or find snacks at select shops, including Serendipity in Wickford.
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