What Are You Feeding Your Pet With? Could It Be Helping Them or Harming Them?
The wellness of pets is at the top of our list at Blooming Culture and that is why it is important for us to bring you a variety of options that you might need now, or later in your pet's life. We also hope that sharing this knowledge will help your pet live a longer and happier life. That is why when we met Carol, founder of The Pet Mine Platter we had our own "ah-hah" moment. Our reasons for this product resonating with us might be different than yours. But, we bet everyone can learn at least one thing you may not have considered about the bowl you currently use to feed your pet with.
*And yes, we know the video is long (there is lots of good info)! But if you only watch even half and come back for the rest, we think you will be happy you did.
You developed an innovative new pet product called The Original Mine Pet Platter. What is it?
The Original mine Pet Platter is the first-ever patented feeder that allows pets to eat the way they are meant to—naturally! This is important because it actually promotes healthy eating and improves digestion while offering a stimulating and rewarding experience. Most of the eating problems our pets develop are caused by eating from a bowl, which is ‘unnatural’ and works against healthy eating.
You can crumble their treats, place berries, or put pumpkin in the ridges.
The tray can even be frozen with items so it becomes more of a challenge
to get them out and keeps them busy! Great for the pets that need to release
some extra energy or have anxiety.
Your dog, PIP, inspired the idea. Can you describe that “ah-hah” moment?
Our little 14 pound Pip ate way too fast—ending many meals with an uncomfortable burp. One night we were preparing her favorite chicken meal and decided to put the cutting board on the floor so she could enjoy the bits and juices. Pip’s natural instincts kicked in and for the next 15 minutes, she walked around the board exploring, sniffing and licking until every last speck of food eaten. She looked up at us with licks of satisfaction and her tail happily wagging. Eureka!
How does the Mine Platter's design enhance a pet’s eating experience vs. a traditional bowl?
While the bowl may be a convenience for us, it does little to benefit our pets. They stand very rigid in front of the bowl; sticking their heads into a ‘hole’ which blocks their vision and creates anxiety; inhaling the pile of food in large clumps which leads to poor digestion including gas, regurgitation and even bloat. No mental or physical involvement with their meal. Done in seconds flat.
The Pet Platter was developed by studying the ancestral eating behaviors of our dogs and cats —replicating how they eat in the wild.
The platter has a broad surface offering complete movement and control with no blinding sides, thereby reducing anxiety. The meal is spread across the surface which naturally slows the pace and amount they eat for improved digestion. Surface areas promote hunting and sniffing of foods while ridges and scoops increase licking that release positive endorphins to relax and reward. A healthy and satisfying meal experience.
It’s been called an enrichment product. What does that mean?
Enrichment products stimulate interest and behaviors to help alleviate boredom in our pet’s lives. Our pet’s ancestors used to spend over 90% of their time in the wild searching and hunting for food. The bowl takes away these instinctive behaviors because the food is piled high in a small area which they can’t explore or interact with. The Pet Platter’s generous surface area with ridges and scoops engages pets to explore, hunt and sniff and their minds are stimulated by interacting and licking the different foods.
The platter has been described as a pet eating territory with a 360-degree panoramic view. Can you explain?
In the wild, animals instinctively treated carcasses as their personal feeding territory and would circle it to ensure that no other animals were nearby that could steal their food. Unlike the bowl, the Pet Platter resembles this feeding territory which allows complete 360-degree views to reduce food guarding and anxiety. This provides our pets with a calm and relaxed mealtime.
What kind of eating behaviors has the platter changed?
We are proud to say that veterinarians, trainers, pet professionals, and Pet Parents have reported that the Pet Platter has improved both the health and wellbeing of their pets including:
#1 Slows the pace of eating
#2 Stops food being taken out of the feeder
#3 Stops/reduces burping, regurgitation, and vomiting
#4 Minimizes the risk of bloat
#5 Engages finicky eaters
#6 Stops/reduces food guarding
#7 Eliminates mindless eating
#8 Eliminates boredom
#9 Reduces anxious behavior
#10 Increases interest in eating
Most feeders/bowls contain chemicals that leach into food and lead to health issues. What is the Mine Platter made of?
Great question. There is an increase of cancer in our pets and the material that feeders are made from can play a role. The majority of feeders (especially from China) are made from recycled plastics and metals which can contain unhealthy and toxic elements that are actually harmful to your pet. This is why we have taken great care in selecting the best and safest material! The Pet Platter is 100% USA made—from start to finish! It is made with cellulose fiber that comes from plant life. Even better, it’s dishwasher safe, BPA-free and eco-friendly (recyclable and sustainable forestry). Nothing but the best for our furry family members…and our planet!
Can you give a description of the platter itself?
The bone-shaped platter is designed with a generous surface area including ridges and scoops. The Pet Platter comes in 2 sizes:
- Small: For dogs/cats 30 lbs which is 10 x 13 x .5” and weighs 1.4 pounds
- Large: For dogs/cats 30 lbs which is 12 x 16 x .5” and weighs 2 pounds
The Pet Platter is extremely strong and durable and is dishwasher safe (bottom rack) but can also be hand washed.
Where can you buy them? How many would you recommend getting?
We have a wonderful selection of pet stores, veterinarians and daycare facilities from across the country who carry our product and can offer you expert nutritional advice on foods to serve your pets. (You can find a list on our website.) If there isn’t a store near you, you can order directly from us on our website. Many of our pet parents buy one platter for meals and another for treats.
Important! If you have more than one pet in your household, we recommend having a different colored Pet Platter for each one. Pets adapt the color of Pet Platter they are originally served their first meal on as their personal feeding territory. This eliminates pets from stealing food from one another as well as food aggression.
What are some of the other benefits of the platter?
While Pet Platter is perfect for serving all foods, it does have some special benefits:
First, Pet Platter is non-porous, so it is great for serving raw foods. Second, the Pet Platter is knife and utensil safe, so it’s ideal for homemade recipes and mixtures. Finally, you can freeze foods and liquids on the Pet Platter for fun frozen treats.
Can it be used for other things besides food?
Absolutely—for all medications including CBD—and Blooming Culture. Pet Parents and groomers have told us that if they have a difficult time getting their pets to take CBD, they simply put it on a Pet Platter.
Does the platter work for finicky cats?
One cause of finicky eating is that cats suffer from “whisker fatigue ”—when their whiskers touch the side of a bowl it can cause discomfort and even feel like painful pinpricks. Since the Pet Platter has no sides, their whiskers can move freely for a pain-free meal.
Another insight about cats is that they are true hunters at heart and enjoy stalking their prey. Since cats recognize the Pet Platter as their personal feeding territory, they engage in ‘hunting it down’. Cats spend their time stalking it from different angles, circling it multiple times until they pounce it! We’ve heard fascinating stories from our cat Pet Parents.
Why did you select these specific colors for the platters?
Does it make a difference to the dog or cat? Dogs and cats have a different color spectrum than we do. So, we selected colors that they can see distinctly and differentiate between. This explains why pets will adopt the color of Pet Platter they are first served as “theirs” and will respect the feeding territory of another household pet’s different color platter.
How does it work for pets that are on liquid diets?
Simply pour the liquid onto the platter so that it fills the ridges and scoops. And remember you can freeze liquids like bone broth and goats milk for a fun licking meal.
The Mine Platter won the 2016 Family Choice Award. Why was this important?
We were honored to be nominated for the Family Choice Award because it recognizes the best and most innovative products for members of our families—including our cherished pets! We were thrilled to be recognized for the creativity and contribution our product provides pets.
What is your background?
My background is focused on psychology and sociology (Ph.D.) which is ideal in researching and understanding both the animal and pet world. It became my challenge to identify natural, instinctive eating behaviors we needed to improve the health and wellbeing of our pets.
How long did it take to launch your product?
It took over 3 years in research and development — it was a long, but exciting journey!
What's been the biggest challenge?
Educating Pet Parents that, “How you feed your pet is just as important as what you feed them.” You can feed them the most nutritious food but the benefits will be limited unless you serve the food in a natural and healthy way.
What has been the feedback?
“Success! I’m a believer!” — both in the veterinarian community as well as among Pet Parents! All you have to do is try the Pet Platter so you can actually see how it promotes healthy eating while providing sheer enjoyment for your pet.
Are there any other products in the works?
We’re planning on coming out with a Pet Platter for cats in 2020—and we’re working on another surprise product as well —you’ll be the first to know!
Can you share one of the best success stories using the Mine Pet Platter?
We had one Pet Parent contact us who was at their wit’s end. Their dog gorged and inhaled their food, which led to burping and regurgitation. As the problem continued they noticed that their dog was developing a lot of gas and they became worried about bloat. Because of the discomfort the dog was having, he sometimes wouldn’t eat to avoid pain, leading to further gorging — it was truly a vicious cycle. They tried everything, but nothing worked.
The Pet Parents served their dog’s first meal on the Pet Platter and saw an instant change — the platter slowed the volume and pace of their dog’s eating while engaging him in hunting and sniffing for his food. Their dog’s digestion improved to the point where there was no regurgitation nor gas. It completely changed their dog’s life, as well as their own, because they no longer had to worry about bloat anymore. Best of all, the Pet Platter became their dog’s friend and he would visit it during the day, tap his paw on it, and even cuddled to sleep by it sometimes.
What’s the one thing that pet parents tell you after using it?
The Pet Platter solves their pet’s eating issues AND their pets no longer want to eat from a bowl—they truly enjoy eating off the platter. After all, mother nature knows best!