Keeping canines happy and healthy has become a booming business. So, with a passion for his dogs and an entrepreneurial bent, Joe Scott decided to turn a longtime side project into a growing business. 

Based out of his home near Brillion, Scott, and his wife, Angela, run Alpha Dog Nutrition, which manufactures and sells canine nutritional supplements, developed specifically for medium to large hunting dogs. 

“We started with bird dogs,” says Scott, a Howard-Suamico native. “But any dog could take this and it would be good for them.”

An avid hunter, Scott “tried to come up with better nutritional products for my dogs.” But while he had launched businesses before, he needed the assistance of an expert with a doctorate in animal nutrition to formulate the products, which are designed to help alleviate dandruff, allergies and shedding, and aid joint care and vitality. 

“From doing research, I had a very good idea what (the dogs) would need,” he says. “I wanted to have that credibility and know it’s a good product. The concept is similar to humans — the clean eating movement. 

“Our goal is to strip away the additives and fillers, which results in less risk of allergies; we’re giving the dogs what they need.” 

Alpha Dog products are available nationwide. A manufacturer on the East Coast makes the products, while a Missouri company distributes them. “I feel like I’m pretty good at bringing the right people together at the right time,” Scott says.

“It allows us to run really lean,” he adds. “We could probably increase our margins by bringing it all in house, but it works super well.” 

Alpha Dog sells 100 percent directly to consumers, marketing primarily on social media. From 2019 to 2020, the company doubled its sales, Scott says. And while he realizes they might make more money going to retail, he says, “Our customer response is so good; we’ve grown pretty steadily. It’s been our strategy from day one; we like to own the customer experience.”