My cat is a bit of a chunky monkey, and he’s not alone in his affliction. Almost 58 percent of cats and 53 percent of dogs are obese, according to research by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention. Keith Johnson’s dog Mickey had the same problem, while his other pup, Rosie, had the opposite issue. While Mickey was chowing down and lazing about, Rosie was energetically racing around, burning off more calories than she consumed.
“I knew that there was a better way of feeding pets rather than just withholding or pushing more food,” Johnson told Digital Trends. As a former Marketing and Business Team Leader at Procter & Gamble, he decided to take his expertise from working with Iams pet food to create his own company, Petbrosia. “We’re a breakthrough in technology and pet nutrition,” says Johnson.
When you cruise the pet aisle at the grocery store or the pet store, you might find special formulas such as “Indoor” or “Mature.” What you won’t find is a blend catered to a eight-year-old, 13-pound Maine Coon cat who is pretty sedentary and it shows. But Johnson says that Petbrosia can mix up something with just those specifications in mind for my cat and have it shipped out within twenty minutes after I’ve entered all the information. Pulling from its database of pets, the site’s algorithm uses your pet’s stats to find the blend of food. The cost for this level of specificity is about $1.70 a day for a medium-sized dog, says Johnson.
Petbrosia, which recently received a $1.5-million commercial acceleration loan from the State of Ohio, wants to become a hub of your pets’ health. Its Wellness Portal will help customers track changes in their pets’ health and weight. Johnson says the company hopes to create a forum for “pet parents,” where they can ask for advice and tips from other Petbrosia fanatics.
The main ingredients in the food are “free-run” chicken or “grain-free” salmon and brown rice, and the site touts it as corn-, wheat-, and soy-free. While not every vet agrees that corn is a bad base for pet food, Johnson stresses that Petbrosia is a quality product tailored to pets specific needs, from weight to allergies. When the food arrives, it comes with a card detailing the breakdown of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates in your pet’s diet and instructions for feeding. A measuring cup helps owners keep track of how much they’re feeding Whiskington or Sprocket.
Another optional feature that keeps owners on track (and help stop them from overfeeding their pets) is the subscription module. Instead of shipping out a bag of food once a month, the system is customized to each pet. If Whiskington only gets a half a cup of food a day, his food will arrive less frequently than cup-a-day Sprocket’s. If a pet is putting on too much weight, owners can go back and change his or her “body composition” in the profile. The next time the pet food arrives, it will be a different formula. The company also takes into account how pets’ diets should change as they age.
So, is the premium-priced pet food (which Johnson likes to point out costs less than many people’s Starbucks habit) worth it? Of his dogs Mickey and Rosie, Johnson says, “within sixty days they both achieved their ideal body condition.”