OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) - A spunky business owner realized she wanted to follow her passion for loving dogs after taking time to focus on her sobriety.
Not only has Amanda Colanino helped nearly 30 foster dogs find forever homes but she has taken her hobby of making dog treats and turned it into a growing business. It’s a business that's taking off and becoming larger than her wildest dreams.
"Once I got my head clear, and made it a business, I mean still today, the people in Arby's were like, "Oh my God, do you sell that out of your van?" I'm like, "I do." So it's just, I don't know, it's weird. It's weird to me that my tiny dream is you know an actual business," said Colanino, owner of DogGurt.
DogGurt is a frozen yogurt made by hand and with ingredients pet owners will recognize. Colanino had her product at a Hy-Vee event when the manager of the Hy-Vee store asked her about selling her product at that location.
"They saw how often I was restocking, then other stores jumped on board. Now I am in five Hy-Vee's, and three, soon to be four Pet Supplies Plus stores, and then on top of all of the smaller local pet stores in Omaha and Lincoln," said Colanino.
With the help from an area Pet Supplies Plus manager, she has her product in stores in other states.
"With his help, I am in two Colorado stores, and then I am delivering to Minnesota next month," said Colanino.
With all of that DogGurt, you might think she has a large staff. But it is all made by hand by Colanino. She has already run out of room and had to expand her office.
"I had my grand opening on September 25th of 2020, and it was a huge success. Within that same year, I had to move to a bigger office next door because I have grown so much, but it's exciting,” she said.
Colanino has an ambitious five-year plan that she is really excited to make into a reality.
"Turn the Omaha operation over to somebody, which is going to be really hard because this is my baby. I want to do that and get somebody here to do the dailies, while I spread the DogGurt love to Colorado and maybe more of the Midwest,” said Colanino.
She also hopes to combine her passion for fostering animals with her passion for DogGurt.
"My dream is always when I thought about DogGurt on paper, was to do like the lost kids milk carton thing and I would like to adopt a rescue a month, and put adoptable dogs on my label and keep them on the label until they find their home," said Colanino.
Colanino hopes that sharing her story of building a business around a simple or unusual idea will inspire others to follow their passions.
On top of finding DogGurt products in stores, you can always find the DogGurt van at farmers markets or community events in the metro.