Nothing to Yaff At: YaffBars of South Hero Are Energy For Hounds And Humans | Bite Club

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Nothing to Yaff At: YaffBars of South Hero Are Energy For Hounds And Humans

Posted By on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 at 11:13 AM

When Mark Brooks set out to create a power bar thatoutdoorsy dog owners could share with their active pooches, he made aninteresting observation about interspecies cuisine. His first instinct was tobake a dog biscuit that people could eat. But that concept proved too hard toswallow, as he discovered the day he asked his teenage daughter to try one.

“She said to me, ‘Dad, I am not eating dogtreats!’” recalls Brooks. “My first reaction was to get into an argument withher. But when I thought about it, I realized, my God, she’s right!”

Brooks' prototype was appetizing enough. But the classicallytrained chef from England, whose company, Mudd+Wyeth, is based in South Hero, had come at it from the wrong direction.

“If you make a product and people think it’s for dogs, it’ll be anovelty, and it won’t sell,” he says. “But if it’s a good human product thatpeople can also share with their dogs, people will buy it.”

The result: The YaffBar, billed as “the world’s first energy barfor you and your dog.” (Yaff is an old English word meaning “bark.”) Becausemany ingredients typically found in energy bars — flour, butter, chocolate,refined sugar — aren’t good for dogs, Brooks turned to all-natural ones,including puffed rice, honey, brown rice syrup, almonds, cranberries and carob.YaffBars are endorsed by Williston veterinarian, dog trainer and triathleteRyan Canales.

How do you product-test a treat for dogs, who eat virtuallyanything that hits the floor?

Brooks and his wife, Mary Powell, used their own four pups, includingtwo Great Danes, a Cairn terrier and a mutt named Mudd — one half of theMudd+Wyeth name. According to Brooks, only one ingredient — coconut — didn’tagree with Mudd.

“He became very flatulent,” Brooks recalls. “Not a big sellingpoint at all.”

YaffBars, which hit the market a month ago at Pet Food Warehouse,come in three flavors: honey almond cranberry, banana peanut butter andblueberry carob. And no coconut.

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

One or more images has been removed from this article. For further information, contact

About The Author

Ken Picard

Ken Picard

Ken Picard has been a Seven Days staff writer since 2002. He has won numerous awards for his work, including the Vermont Press Association's 2005 Mavis Doyle award, a general excellence prize for reporters.

More By This Author


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Latest in Bite Club

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2022 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation