The Norman Transcript

February 15, 2010

Norman lawyer goes to the doghouse with beef jerky

By Andrew Knittle

Norman lawyer and small business owner Dave Stockwell has been making private label beef jerky for years.

He started off in his garage, but his passion for smoking and curing round steak has led to the occupation of a commercial facility in the Oklahoma City metro area.

His latest jerky product -- this one for canine consumers -- has all the makings of a hit.

At least that's what Stockwell thinks.

"It's like crack for dogs," he said of his new product, called Paw Paw Jerky. "They go crazy for this stuff."

Stockwell, who has dogs of his own, said his doggie beef jerky is "vet-test and vet-approved," adding that Paw Paw Jerkey isn't high in things like sodium, garlic and fat. Things that are bad for dogs who live a mostly, um, sedentary lifestyle.

"There's nothing negative about it, it's a high-quality product," he said. "I eat this stuff, my kids eat this stuff. It's a little blander than what we usually eat but it's good jerky."

Stockwell said the doggie jerky is actually the idea of his daughters, University of Oklahoma students Madison and Mackenzie, but he's working on it with them. He said he believes in the idea because many people view their dogs as quite a bit more than just furry companions who'll let you know if someone walks by your front yard. Especially if it's the mailman.

"It's healthy for dogs and people love their dogs these days, more than they ever have," he said of his doggie jerky. He said it is basically identical to human jerky, minus the additives that make it appealing to those who walk upright.

"It's 100 percent round steak, cut against the grain," Stockwell said. "It's easy to tear, easy to chew."

Stockwell said Paw Paw Jerky is officially for sale, mainly because he just got his sales tax permit earlier in last week. For now, he said he'll work on getting it into convenience stores, grocery stores, dog groomers and other "boutique-type stores" in central Oklahoma, as well as peddling the doggie treat online.

For more information about the jerky or to order some for your canine companion, visit pawpawjerky.com.

Andrew Knittle 366-3540 aknittle@normantranscript.com