As some humans are taking precautions to protect themselves against potentially harmful materials (i.e. BPA and some metals), they should be taking the same measures with their dogs. But unfortunately, they aren’t, something one company is hoping to change.
Up until now, many of the pet food bowls commonly available on the market are often made from some kind of unnatural, potentially chemical leaking material mass produced in overseas factories. Berkeley, Calif.-based PawNosh is hoping to give dog owners a safer alternative with its non-toxic, eco-friendly (and beautiful) bowls.
PawNosh was started from a need
According to co-founder Sachi Ushihara, PawNosh started after they adopted a rescue cat named Cubby and couldn’t find any 100 percent safe and durable feeding bowls for him.
“We had begun migrating our own ‘human-use’ food storage vessels away from plastics, metals and ceramics in favor of non-toxic, non-leaching glass. We wanted the same for our pet,” she says.
After extensive searching they couldn’t find anything like it on the market. The only options they found were thin Pyrex bowls which were easily scooted and tipped, not to mention quite boring and not very stylish. So they decided to make it themselves. They even named their flagship dish “the Cubby bowl.”
It wasn’t just the founders of PawNosh that saw the need. They decided to run a Kickstarter campaign to raise funding and help them determine if the public felt the same. Apparently they did, as they reached their $10,000 goal and then some.
“We received generous financial and moral support from backers all over the country and the world, as well as many letters of positive feedback and encouragement” Sachi tells us. “The funds raised provided us with the critical initial capital to get our production rolling.”
She also mentions that they couldn’t have done it without the continued support of their backers who have become loyal customers and continue helping to spread the word.
Durable, safe and beautiful
PawNosh pet food bowls were created with five guiding principles in mind: safety, sustainability, durability, beauty and American-made.
Glass is one of the most trusted materials on the market, in terms of health and environment factors. Indeed, the FDA states glass is the only food and beverage packaging material generally regarded as safe for use by humans, according to the PawNosh website. Because of this, glass is the only material that doesn’t require a toxicity testing. Pretty impressive. Plus, having their pet feeder bowls made from 100 percent post-consumer recycled glass also allows PawNosh to produce an environmentally sustainable product. Creating bowls from recycled glass results in a 20 to 30 percent reduction in energy usage, according to the website.
To fulfill its American-made principle, PawNosh was extremely lucky in finding artisan glass makers in their home state of California. “Maintaining onshore production remains one of our top business priorities. We choose to support domestic craft and skilled labor to preserve U.S. jobs,” Sachi points out.
The artisans create these PawNosh pet food and water bowls out of extra-thick hand-pressed glass with an ergonomical notch cut into the bottom making them easy to pick up. They are so confident in the strength of their pet food bowls they offer a lifetime warranty against breakage.
“We consider them a one-time investment to be enjoyed by customers for years and decades to come,” Sachi says.
The PawNosh bowls currently come in three translucent colors: tangerine, celery and my personal favorite, aqua. Plus, unlike the “tchotchke-esque” look you see on many of the decorative pet food bowls, the bowls have an attractive, elegant design. You certainly won’t feel the need to hide this in some obscure corner.
Currently they don’t have any new products planned but are looking forward to customer feedback to help them decide where to go next. They are considering the addition of new colors, some new sizes perfect for toy breeds and mastiffs, or maybe even new designs.
How to get your PawNosh pet food bowl
PawNosh bowls are only sold at a few select retailers and directly through their website PawNosh.com. Don’t be surprised though if you run into them at a street fair, art and wine festival, gift show, or other specialty convention as they are still working hard to spread their brand and establish a strong foothold. They can also easily be purchased from Amazon.