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  • Writer's pictureBear & Kind

Welcome to Bear and Kind Apawthecary!

Hello and welcome to Bear and Kind! We're so excited you're here! Because we are new to cyberspace we thought it only fitting that we use our first post to introduce ourselves...

So Who Are We?

Well, in a nutshell, we is me. I'm a bear Mumma of three in a teeny tiny little town in country Victoria, Australia, aptly named Barkly. Though I have been in the pet industry full-time for just over two dog years (16 human years), I have been loved, owned and trained dogs since childhood. To me, they are better company than most humans (no offence guys LOL). I have done rescue, rehabilitation, respite and pet therapy for people with special needs through a not-for-profit I established in Melbourne, and have owned pet care businesses providing services from walking and daycare to grooming and holiday care. I have also advised pawrents on a variety of pet care issues such as diet and physical health, anxiety and behaviour, obedience training and natural care and well-being. I have gotten so much from my relationship with dogs and animals in general over the years that it's important to me to give as much back to them as I can. I have used and made my own natural remedies at home for myself and my own pets for a long time and discovered so many benefits. So now my goal is to share that experience and knowledge with other pawrents to help their furkids be as happy and healthy as possible.

How Did It All Start?

When I started my journey in making my own natural pet products I had a grooming salon in Melbourne. I saw so many dogs come through our doors with skin conditions such as dermatitis, eczema and contact allergies who did not respond favorably to traditional medicine. There were limited natural options available in dog shampoos and topical treatments at the time, so finding a product to gently cleanse and soothe the skin without causing further irritation was extremely difficult. Out of necessity my Dad and I formulated a hypo allergenic shampoo range which we also sold in pet stores and other grooming salons. The results and the feedback was terrific. But after selling up and moving to the country years later I started to think...what if I could take it one step further? What if I could go right back basics?

I wanted to make a product as close to nature as possible. Something clean and organic, and sourced responsibly. Making the products was easy enough...I had been making soaps, balms and salves from scratch for years. The next steps were researching producers and suppliers, and experimenting with different ingredients and formulations to see what worked.

What Makes Us Different?

I source certified organic and fairtrade wherever possible. This primarily includes the coconut oil and shea butter I use, which ticks both boxes. I also use certified organic olive, castor, jojoba, hemp seed and carrot seed oils, and botanicals (leaves and dried flowers). I try to support small local producers when I can, but only those that produce organically grown ingredients. Because organic certification is too expensive for many small family farms, I also use ingredients that are grown using no chemicals, or 'organically grown'. I have a range of standard questions that I use to assess suitability, and visit the farm if nearby. This includes jojoba oil, hemp seed, linseed oil and meal, and the oats used to make ground oatmeal and oat milk for our soaps and balms. Because of the high cost and limited availability of certified organic essential oils, particularly Australian made ones, I use 'pure' essential oils of the highest quality I can find. I am well aware of the potential dangers if used improperly with animals and therefore use only oils that are proven safe and only in minimal amounts to remain effective while not causing irritation.

That's pretty much what goes into our products. But it's just as important to mention the things that do not. I would never use anything on my dogs that I wouldn't use on myself, so our ingredients are not only human grade, but are free of so many of the irritants that are used commonly in the products that we use everyday. This list includes sulfates, parabens, alcohol, synthetic fragrances, artificial preservatives, and formaldehydes.

I am also focused on creating a brand that is not only good for dogs but kind to the planet. For this reason I absolutely will not ever use palm oil or palm oil derivatives, and all of the products are packaged in Kraft paper wrapping, boxes or tubes, or glass. I could have used recycled plastics which certainly would have been cheaper and saved on postage, but ultimately chose not to because I would prefer not to add to the disposable plastics problem. I also use recycled paper labels which are printed on with sustainable inks.

So Where To From Here?

We're just getting started so we still have along way to go as a brand and a business. The initial product offering is out there but there are many more products coming, and a lot of information I want to share with pawrents to help them on their own journey with their puppers. I will post here around once a month (or try to) with updates and tips on keeping your dog healthy and happy as naturally as possible. We also have a Facebook group (Bear and Kind Facebook Community) where we share updates and info and chat about our experiences with our furry ones. Then there is the email community...where subscribers will get exclusive looks at new products and promotions as well as a 15% discount for life! Just signup via the popup on the homepage and you will receive your special discount code that can be used here on the website or in the Etsy shop ( That's about it for the moment I guess. If you have any questions please feel free to get in touch. I am always happy to help out a fellow pawrent if I can. And if you ever have ideas for content you would like to see on a particular topic let me know! But for now, thanks for listening, and I'll see you next time. Hug your dog for me! Sherry xx

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