Jerry E. Moffett, vice presi- dent of sales and marketing for Worcester, Mass.-based ruffDawg, reveals how the dog toy maker emerged from
a family-owned rubber-molding
Pet Product News: RuffDawg is a division
of Jefferson Rubber Works, a fami-
ly-owned rubber-molding company. Tell
us how the brand came about.
Jerry E. Moffett: The company is family owned by the pentland family,
with Jefferson rubber Works starting in 1975 to provide a source of
high-precision, cost-efficient rubber molded parts for large-volume
rubber consumers. ruffDawg was
started in 1998 in order to find safe
made in the USA dog products for
PPN: The made in the USA product cate-
gory has taken off in the past few years.
How has this affected your company?
JM: it definitely has increased business. We have the staff to create
new, colorful, innovative products,
and the ability to make them
conform to higher standards than
what is coming from overseas.
Customers are demanding traceability of their purchases. We stand
behind every product we sell.
PPN: Right now, much of the focus on
made in the USA pet products seems
to be on consumables. Do you believe
nonconsumable products in this category will be getting more attention in
JM: Yes, we now know that
consumables—food and treats—
made overseas may not be safe
for our best friends, so why
would we take a chance on
anything that goes in our pets’
mouths, even if it’s not consumed? That’s besides the fact
that made in the USA products
create and maintain good jobs
here at home.
PPN: What are the challenges of making
dog toys entirely in the USA?
JM: Consumers, buyers and
retailers want to buy made in
the USA pet products, but they
want to pay “overseas pricing.”
i just returned from a large
mass account down south that
actually told me that they want
to buy our products because
they are made in the USA but
only if we could meet overseas
pricing. We have to continue to
educate everyone involved that
paying a little more is not only
safer and better, but it helps
RuffDawg’s philosophy is that anything a pet puts in
its mouth should be harmless, and for the company,
that starts with U.S. manufacturing.
By Carrie Brenner
Dave Pentland’s family started RuffDawg because they
wanted to create safe, made in the USA toys for their dogs.