|Three Dog Bakery
Nestled in the French Quarter among the art galleries, gift shops and clothing stores, is a unique boutique that caters to the canine and canine lover in all of us. The Three Dog Bakery, located at 827 Royal Street, is one of the highlights of the horse carriage tours that pass by. If your dog is celebrating a birthday or another special occasion, this is THE place to order a bone-shaped cake, or a custom assortment of fresh-baked treats and goodies.
When you enter the Three Dog Bakery, your senses are tantalized by the bouquet of fresh-baked goodies. Unsuspecting tourists visiting the French Quarter have been known to walk into the bakery, seduced by the aromas wafting down Royal St., only to find that the dazzling array of delectable, eye-catching yummies are strictly for the dogs.
Heather Butler opened her New Orleans store in 1996. It was the first to open after the original store in Kansas City. Her staff includes Dawn Jerigan, Shawn Andres, Rick Italiano, Chris Rogers, who bakes all of the wonderful fresh-baked pastries, and Linda Berman, an artist whose specialty is creating 3-dimensional ceramic pictures of your dog. She recently launched a second store in Covington¹s charming Historic District on Columbia St.
There isn¹t a holiday, special event or festive occasion that goes overlooked at the Three Dog Bakery. Christmas features Santa Paws cookies, red and green PupTarts and bone-shaped tins filled with peanut butter biscuits. Hanukkah includes treats in the shape of a menorah or dreidel. Valentines Day specials include Pooch Smooch Sampler with carob & peanut butter-dipped treats as well heart-shaped personalized cookies. Easter brings Easter Bassets, Easter Bunny Cookies and Easter Begs. And when Mardi Gras rolls around, K-9 King Cakes are added to the everyday assortment of fresh-baked specialties such as PupCakes, SnickerDoodles Scottie Biscotti, Ruffles and Boxer Brownies. There are no plastic babies baked into the K-9 King Cakes but Heather has entertained the idea of adding a small, edible kitty to the center of each cake.
When Whoopi Goldberg visited the Crescent City, she made a stop at the Three Dog Bakery and loved the store so much that she ordered custom gift stockings for her dogs.
In the interest of maintaining their finely honed poochie party-throwing skills ³Yappy Hour, a Social Event for Dogs and Their Humans² is held in the store on the third Wednesday evening of every month. Dogs are encouraged to bring their humans for treats, snacks, refreshments and a howling good time.
The Three Dog Bakery started out as an experiment. The company founders, Mark Beckloff and Dan Dye, had three dogs (hence the name) Gracie, Sarah and Dottie, (also known as the ³Founding Sisters²) who refused to eat ordinary store-bought dog food. On the advice of their vet, Beckloff & Dye began preparing foods that were all natural, with no artificial ingredients. As they experimented, the girls were delighted with the new dishes. No more turned up noses at dinnertime; these new dishes were a success. Word soon spread, one thing led to another, and the first Three Dog Bakery store was opened in 1989 in Kansas City, Missouri. During the past 12 years, the company has grown to include locations in several major cities in New York, California, Connecticut, Maryland, Idaho, New Mexico and Texas. They have two locations in Canada and one in Tokyo. You can also find them on the web at www.threedog.com The word dog in the Three Dog Bakery pretty much tells you that the items are for those of the canine variety. Not necessarily.
Believe it or not, felines have their own special Kitty Corner. You can choose gift items from the ³We Pity the Kitty,² section, such as Alaskan salmon cat treats wrapped in catnip gift-wrap.
When the Three Dog Bakery was founded in 1989, Mark Beckloff and Dan Dye wanted to do something for all the other dogs that were not as fortunate to live in a loving home. The Gracie Foundation, (named after one of the founding sisters), provides support for abused and neglected animals. In addition, the organization also donates money to non-profit animal groups.
This year, as a result of 9/11, the foundation donated money to support ³Sniffer Dogs,² animals that sniff out landmines in Afghanistan. The Three Dog Bakery has also donated gift baskets to the SPCA and the Humane Society.
If you¹d like to try your hand at baking some healthy, delicious treats for your pooch, you might want to consider these Banana Mutt Cookies, courtesy of ³The Three Dog Bakery Cookbook.²
BANANA MUTT COOKIES
Makes 20 mutt pleasers
11/2 cup of ripe mashed bananas
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups of oats
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup applesauce
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix all ingredients together thoroughly.
3. Drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto an ungreased baking sheet and press flat with a fork.
4. Bake for approximately 15 minutes. Cool on a rack before serving. Store in an airtight container.