$1,732
pledged of $44,000pledged of $44,000 goal
28
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Mon, October 26 2015 2:09 PM UTC +00:00
$1,732
pledged of $44,000pledged of $44,000 goal
28
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Mon, October 26 2015 2:09 PM UTC +00:00

About

In 2011, I was a full-time veterinarian at a 24/7 emergency, general and specialty small animal hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I was in a debilitating car accident that left me with a head injury, a concussion that landed me in a very difficult position. I could not work the long hours once required by my position. Thanks to FMLA for allowing me several months of limited work with full-time pay in order to "recover". A typical concussion heals within a year, as per WebMD. But of course, my situation is "extraordinary". My injury was passed from neurologist to advanced surgical neurologist to physical therapist to vision therapy to a neuroptometrist to a neurology rehabilitation medical doctor that finally was able to medicate me to be able to function again. While only working 8 hours a week, I was told to REST.

Doctors encouraged me to do a limited number of activities to regain my brain's communication with my eyes. I created The Pet Bakery of Oakmont during this time. I was able to bake dog treats, create a small business at my own pace, without needing the fine-tuned neuro-ocular functions that small animal medicine and surgery demanded. The bakery grew. My endlessly supportive mother jumped in and backed my every effort. It was busy. I, a veterinarian, created healthy, safe, mostly organic pet treats that were kind to the earth and used only recycled, compostable materials for shipping and packaging. We donated to good causes. We gave back to the community.

With a few friends and my mother helping, I was able to return to veterinary medicine working part-time at my original hospital. Unfortunately, my contract had me working part-time and I couldn't even afford my medical insurance. A very good friend suggested I become a relief veterinarian. I substituted and cared for several local veterinarians' hospitals as if they were my own on a limited basis. My eyes grew stronger. My hours of fine-tuned function began to heal.

The Pet Bakery of Oakmont helped me heal. It gave me hope when all seemed hopeless. It helped retrain my eyes and my brain, but most importantly, gave me optimism. Needing to grow, the Small Business Association of Pittsburgh lead me to a group that would lend money through unsecured credit to allow my baby bakery an opportunity to expand. At this point, all of the treats I had made were being made in my own kitchen, through my own monetary investments. I had dehydrators, business supplies, baking supplies throughout my entire house. My two car garage was not fit to be used to bake pet treats.

After doing extensive research into USDA, FDA, Health Department regulations, I was able to "flip" my garage into a baking space. I reached out to a few friends that highly recommended a contractor to do this project for my business. Using the money lent to me, I paid this man $33,000 to turn my bakery into a clean, safe area to bake pet treats. He began the project, performed $11,000 and left. He robbed my small, struggling business of $22,000. I finished the project of flipping my garage with my savings andd my personal credit cards in order to allow my bakery to continue to grow. As the bakery climbed deeper into debt, I attempted to take this contractor to court. Thousands of dollars in lawyers' fees later, he agreed to what he did and was to pay me $15,400. Instead, he claimed bankruptcy. I am now back to working a 40+ hour work week in Veterinary Medicine. My mother (who also works 40+ hours a week in the veterinary medicine industry) and I bake cakes, treats, donuts, attend events, etc. during the late hours in order to continue to pay the bakery's bills. In doing so, my concussion signs worsen with every hour of lost sleep. I am in the process of refinancing my home in order to keep the bakery alive.

My mother and I love The Pet Bakery of Oakmont. It has brought joy to so many families and pets throughout the country. It was the light that I looked toward during the toughest times of my injury. It breaks our hearts to know that it is sinking due to another small business's unethical practices.

We want to see it live. This is a business that could grow to its immense potential if someone had the time, business skills, finances, efforts to do so. With its debt, it cannot hire employees.

I write this in search of someone that loves animals, loves baking and wants to see small businesses thrive despite tragic events.

Some tell me to sell the bakery. Others tell me to sell my recipes. Some tell me to go bankrupt. Some tell me to hang in there.. it will pay off.

Kickstarter was presented to me by a friend.  I reach out to you all in search of a way to get back up after I've been kicked down... again.

Thank you for all that you do!!

Love, A passionate veterinarian, a talented baker, a recovering concussion victim, 

Sarah.

Risks and challenges

My mother and I are the only bakers :) We only ship fresh treats! Please be patient as we pump out cookies without pumping all of the energy out of ourselves :)

xoxo

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    One 5 oz. bag of veterinarian-designed, gmo-free, home/handmade, organic dog treats, designed and baked by The Pet Bakery of Oakmont.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    A Delicious Darcy Sampler (named after the bakery's original test-tester), which includes 2 ounces of each signature treat: Chicken Parmesan Pretzels, Peanut Butter Molasses Biscuits, Grain/Gluten-free Baked Sweet Potato Treats, Pumpkin Biscotti, Skinny Man Banana Carrot Treats

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    Estimated delivery
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    12 backers
    $

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Funding period

- (30 days)