If your pet prefers freshly prepared meals over processed pellets, grab your four-legged foodie and head on over to Tom&Sawyer in Leslieville. Their open-concept kitchen offers the chance to see your pet’s food prepared live with human-grade ingredients for dogs and cats.
“We don’t sell any food items in here that humans can't eat,” says co-owner Kristin Matthews, who was inspired by Sawyer, her Yorkie-poo. She began feeding him home-cooked meals in 2014 after he refused to eat commercially made pet food. “It was so stressful for him and me at dinner,” she says. Sawyer turned his nose up at kibble, but also got really sick on a raw food diet.
Kristin and her husband, Peter Zakarow, realized other pet owners must be in the same predicament. Together, they envisioned a professional business offering pet owners quality-driven pet food and a level of transparency rarely seen in traditional pet food environments. And so Tom&Sawyer was born.
Wholesome Chow, the Cat’s Meow
With its unique focus on freshly prepared pet food and an open-concept kitchen in the middle of the store, Toronto-based Tom&Sawyer is one-of-a-kind in Canada. They offer a variety of pet-friendly meals made with fresh and healthy ingredients you may even be tempted to try yourself. Perhaps your feline will save you a bite of The Harold (a tuna-based recipe) – or at least let you lick the plate.
Kristin says the ingredients that go into each recipe are the same ingredients used at restaurants, thus ensuring a high degree of quality. The meals prepared at Tom&Sawyer were developed by an incredible team of experts, including veterinarians, food scientists, animal nutrition consultants and a culinary team led by Trish Donnelly, an accomplished Toronto chef. Each meal is delicious and nutritious with the right amount of vitamins and nutrients for an optimally balanced diet for dogs and cats.
Peter explains that raw food can present a health danger, noting that so many pets share beds, bowls and kisses with their owners. While dogs can digest uncooked meat, it could quickly become E. coli or salmonella poisoning in a human. For that reason, everything at Tom&Sawyer is gently cooked to kill harmful bacteria.
Real Food at Really Affordable Prices
According to Kristin, it’s very easy to switch your pet to the Tom&Sawyer diet. Not only do Tom&Sawyer regulars look and feel better with softer skin and shiny coats, but the food is actually not that expensive. And if dropping by the store isn't convenient, customers can take advantage of the company's subscription-based delivery service.
Tom&Sawyer is for families that include dogs and cats, and for owners who want to feed their pets freshly prepared food with high quality ingredients. “Pets are increasingly part of the family, and people are finally questioning why we have been feeding them food not fit for human consumption,” says Kristin. Plus, treating them to one of the shop’s carefully curated selection of mostly made-in-Canada toys, edible treats and grooming essentials doesn’t hurt either.