Real Dog Food

Dog Biscuits

At the market: Periodically on the Footpath

Contact: Terry Phillips

Phone: 0800 433 663

Call/text: 021 280 4279



During COVID closures: Not available

Terry's Story

Terry Phillips is the driving force behind Real Dog Food at the market.

How did you get involved in making dog food?

I had a very sick dog. I was spending lots of time and dollars at the vet, and trying everything that I could. Then someone suggested that I try this food. Two weeks later, my dog was much better and lived a long and healthy life. I believe that all dogs deserve a healthy life.

So dog health is important to you

I love dogs, and dogs are getting a raft of health problems at an alarming rate. I’m sure that the preservatives and other fillers that go into large-scale commercial products aren’t good for dogs, just as they aren’t good for us. Preservatives kill a lot of the beneficial microbes in the gut that are needed to properly digest food.

And this mirrors your own health journey

Yes - I was very sick myself. I needed a break so we booked a bach and found out that we had booked in the middle of a healing retreat. I received a lot of advice and support to dramatically improve my own diet. Now our whole family has become vegan and we feel much better for it.

How is your dog food different?

It is locally made in West Auckland using locally-sourced, human-grade ingredients. We sell direct to customers so they get very fresh dog food and we don’t need to add preservatives. This food was developed for the genuine love of dogs. A lot of thought has gone into our recipes to make sure that we provide a complete and balanced food for dogs.

That sounds expensive

Not at all. We think that all dogs deserve good food, just as people do. Part of that is making the food affordable. Selling direct to customers, at markets and online, cuts out a lot of cost. I was shocked when I investigated the costs of selling through vets and supermarkets.

So markets work well for you

We love the market because a lot of customers bring their dogs with them - they can try it there or take samples. Owners know immediately whether or not their dogs will eat it. We love talking about dogs and the specific challenges they are facing.

What has pleased you the most?

We are blown away by the feedback that we get from owners about how our food has helped their dogs. Dogs are an important part of their families and owners are increasingly aware that dogs need better food choices.

Has anything surprised you about customers?

I have been delighted at how important it is to customers that we are a local business. People are conscious that New Zealand has excellent quality food and, lately, everyone is making an extra effort to support New Zealand businesses.

Do you have an important dog in your life?

Yes - Jem Jem is a big dog and a big part of our family, along with my wife and four young children. We are all involved in the business - we really are a small Kiwi family business.

Do you have any time for hobbies?

Not really. I love fishing and watching sport but, at the moment, most of my time is taken up by work and family. I’m an early riser, so I focus on work before collecting my kids from school. My afternoons are focused on homework and our kids’ activities. I love spending time with my family. And of course, Jem Jem and I walk daily.

As published in Ponsonby News : April 2021