We had the good fortune of connecting with Ashley Hutson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ashley, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My thought process behind starting Puptables was originally just the health and wellness of my dog Bullet. Puptables was a complete passion project that I honestly had no intension of creating into an actual company. I am a chef and restaurateur by trade, I have worked in every part of restaurants my entire life. My family owned and operated a Miami favorite called Ortanique on the Mile for 21 years before we had to close our doors due to Covid. All the negative Covid had on our economy without it happening and the support of my Husband Dennis I would’ve never started Puptables. Puptables actually started in the kitchen of Ortanique. Bullet was suffering from terrible allergies to Kibble so I decided I was a chef and should just start cooking for him myself. With some time and research Puptables was created. It is 100% human grade dog food complete meals as well as toppers to be added to your dogs current meal plan. I still use all the same local purveyors I used for Ortanique and will never cut quality to save on costs. Starting your own business is extremely stressful and scary and people rarely speak about the dark times of the entrepreneurial lifestyle. If I didn’t have the support of my husband there is no way I would’ve gotten this far, he is honestly my rock. There is really blood, sweat and many many tears starting a company but creating something you believe in with purpose is so rewarding. A dogs nutrition is the key to a long and healthy life. I hope to bring the same health I have achieved with my dogs to dogs all around Miami and hopefully the nation. With the help of Dennis we also make dog cakes, pup-cakes, treats, golden turmeric paste and CBD products.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I think what sets Puptables apart from others is our true passion for animals and their overall health. A lot of dog food companies are in it for the money not the passion. This was never supposed to be a company it was supposed to save my dog Bullet. Making profits on doing what I love was always an extra. My husband and I both worked other chef jobs to pay the bills, Puptables is about saving other dogs an owners from what I went through. Bullet is my baby, my child, my life, I don’t know what I would do without him. He saved me in a time I was at my lowest and I just knew I needed to save him too. Puptables may not be the right option for your dog and I have even recommended other healthy options to my customers. I want what is best for the dogs and that may not be us. Nothing about this journey is easy! I work nonstop pretty much every day, all day. This causes serious issues with family and friends. I tend to be a little manic and a workaholic so my husband and I have to set work boundaries or else we wouldn’t have any personal time together. I don’t get as much time as I used to with my friends but I think they all understand I am trying to build something great. I think in building a brand you need to establish your mission and purpose early on. We are huge “pitbull’ and Bully breed advocates, we hope to change the views and ridiculous breed specific legislation (BSL) on these amazing dogs. A lot of bully breeds tend to have skin and allergy issues which is why Puptables was even created. We work with a lot of local rescue groups to help raise awareness and funds for these people saving so many dogs lives. The more we grow the more we hope to donate more time and funds to helping the voiceless have a voice.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
So I used to go out much more in my high school and college days, I am not sure what help I would be as a guide these days. I would say search for the mom and pop places not the trendy corporate owned places that come and go every few years. I started my professional career in one of the those mom and pop places. Ortanique was a place filled with locals and a place where you wanted to take your out of town guests because we always made them feel like family. Wynwood is very cool and popular place to go these days. There is great art, restaurants and breweries all in walking distance and at night it turns into a party place as well. Take a trip down the keys, it is filled with mom and pop places on the water. If you wanted to go to the beach I would not recommend south beach it has changed over the years North Miami beaches are less crowded and a nicer option. The everglades is also very cool and unique, you can do a air boat ride in the day or do a star gazing tour at night.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Without my Mom Cindy and Step Dad Delius I would’ve never been in the restaurant business in the first place. My mom is an amazing chef and overall badass woman who taught me everything I know about the kitchen and creating recipes. My step dad taught me everything I know about running a business from the top to bottom. They both have shown me what hard work is and how sometimes you can’t rely on people and you have to do the dirty work yourself. Being the only girl in the family my dad Charles always made sure I was an independent woman like his mother in such a male dominated world. Last but not least my Husband Dennis. He is a decorated Army veteran and a very talented chef and baker who moved from Honduras at a very young age. He is one of the hardest workers I have ever met. Without his love, support (fights) and the sleepless nights Puptables couldn’t have been possible. I am very fortunate to be surrounded by people who believe and support your dreams even when they seem so far fetched.

Website: www.puptables.com

Instagram: @puptables

Facebook: Puptables

Yelp: Puptables

Image Credits
Carly Terenzio @carlyterenziophotography

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.