Rooted in a love of dogs and their unconditional love and companionship, Rancho Santa Fe resident Kevin Bauer and his teenage son Carson started a pet nutrition company named Furvor, making healthy bone broth for dogs. Since launching into the market at the beginning of the year, Furvor has unexpectedly grown to be the third most-sold bone broth topper for dogs on Amazon.
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More than just another pet food company, Bauer said Furvor is also on a mission to support and promote the availability of service dogs that help people in need live a richer and fuller life. One percent of their revenue supports two local service dog organizations, Next Step Service Dogs and Good Dog! Service Canines. The service organizations train dogs to be loyal service companions for veterans and first responders, and children with disabilities.
“We’re nine months into it, it’s going so much better than we expected,” said Bauer, a 20-year resident of Rancho Santa Fe. “The last nine months have been a blur…It has been a crazy, fun roller coaster ride for sure.”
Bauer started his career in the investment banking sector and since 2004 has been working in the C-suite for companies in various roles. In his positions, he often helps companies push through the growth phase that he now finds himself in as an entrepreneur.
“This is my first time taking an idea and breathing life into it,” he said of this special collaboration with Carson, a senior at The Grauer School. “He’s a brilliant STEM kid,” said Bauer of his son. “I’m so excited to see how he will change the world.”
The Bauers are very outdoorsy and active and so are their two dogs, a Bernese Mountain Dog named Talley and a Brittany spaniel named Oakley—the dogs love to be outside running and frequently accompany the family on camping and hiking trips. Sometimes a dog’s appetite will decrease if they are very active and they will drink a lot of water. On one of their outings, Carson wondered: “Why is there no Gatorade for dogs?” He wanted to figure out an all-natural way to put nutrients into the water, using bone broth.
They had fun with it in the kitchen, doing little father-son science experiments. One of Bauer’s biggest clients had purchased a bone broth company in Ohio and they launched a 15-month research and development process to create a dog-specific product.
Bone broth is typically used for dogs that are picky eaters or for later-stage senior dogs whose appetites are waning. “The flavor of bone broth gives an extra bit of kick to get them back into the food,” Bauer said.
Linking up with the veterinarian community, they discovered that dogs need both hydration and amino acids at mealtime—Furvor bone broth can be used as a topper on a dog’s regular food or it can be added to water for extra hydration.
“Vets love it because it’s liquid protein and amino acids,” said Bauer of the formula that offers 10 essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals to support a dog’s overall health.
Currently, Furvor is offering beef and chicken flavors and will soon launch a new formula for advanced mobility. While many bone broths have high water concentrations of 95-99%, almost like flavored water with no nutritional benefits, Bauer said Furvor is 30 times more nutritionally dense. It’s thicker and almost looks like a Balsamic glaze. It also boasts a longer shelf life.
In addition to bone broth, they also offer chews for immune support, calming, mobility and skin and coat support.
Furvor’s purpose, with the company’s 1% give-back program, is especially meaningful for the Bauers.
The family never realized how close Carson was to their previous dog, a Brittany spaniel named Henry, until they lost him in a tragic accident. Henry was like Carson’s security blanket, he slept on his legs every night and he gave him so much unconditional love, which helped him deal with his anxiety. In many ways, Henry was like an unofficial therapy dog.
For the family’s next pet, Carson picked the Bernese Mountain Dog breed and they used Next Step to formally train Talley to be a service dog. Knowing how special the connections between owner and pet can be, Bauer said they decided to donate 1% of their sales to Next Step as well as Good Dog, “giving back to those who gave us so much.”
All of Furvor’s success so far has been direct to consumers but they are starting discussions to get the bone broth into retail shops. Already, Furvor can be found in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and in Idaho, where the Bauers own a home and spend three to four months of the year.
Bauer said it’s been fun to see how quickly those communities have embraced the product and he hopes to see it grow strong in San Diego. Find Furvor on Amazon or furvorpet.com