Home-Based Bakers: Overcoming "no Pets" Requiremen

Business By lrlt2000 Updated 28 Jul 2011 , 1:21pm by scp1127

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lrlt2000 Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 8:17pm
post #1 of 17

Have any of you had to overcome this requirement?? If so, how did you!? I'm struggling right now trying to figure out how to start my home-based cake business but also comply with all of the CFLs!

I can't afford incubator rental fees (plus, the ones here are too far from me). Practically, I like cake home baking/decorating because I have three small children, so leaving the house and/or finding childcare is not a practical option. So, renting any kind of space is not really practical.

I am planning on contacting my state compliance officer to ask more questions, but wanted to come here and ask what others have done. Did you have to give away your pets? Did the state let you confine the animal(s) to one room while you bake? Did you build an addition?


16 replies
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cai0311 Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 8:39pm
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I live in Ohio. To become licensed I could not have any pets. I don't know if outside only pets are allowed (barn cats, outside dogs...). I didn't ask because I am not allowed outside only pets according to the home owners association so that option was mute to start with.

In Ohio you do not have to be licensed to sell home baked goods. You only have to be licensed if those home baked goods require refrigeration. I don't know where you live, but ask if you even have to be licensed. If not, there is your answer.

If you do have to be licensed and no pets are allowed it will come down to what you want more - the business or the pets.

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kelleym Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 9:06pm
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The rules vary widely by state. Where are you located?

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scp1127 Posted 13 Jul 2011 , 5:07am
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I have four dogs and a chinchillla. That was the first thing I told the health department. Fortunately, because it is a completely separate kitchen, it didn't matter. If it had been a problem, Plan B was down the street in a commercial office building that we own.

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lrlt2000 Posted 14 Jul 2011 , 8:14pm
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scp1127: Right, how is it a separate kitchen? Did you build it separately for this purpose, or is it just that your kitchen has doors that can be closed?? Our CFLs state that there can be no pets 'in the house' which I assume means "anywhere" in the house! Even if I confined them to a separate floor, I still don't think that complies. But, I am wondering if anyone has gotten special considerations from their food compliance officer (i.e., close up the animals while you work on the cake, etc.)

cai0311: Good point. I assumed the CFLs meant cakes, but maybe you're right. I will look into that further.

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scp1127 Posted 14 Jul 2011 , 9:53pm
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I don't think it is special consideration. I think it is just the code for your area.

My house looks like a two story from the front. But on the side there is a first floor. I have a door designated as an entrance. There are stairs in the foyer that lead to the first floor. For my county, the kitchen must be separate and all of the requirements are the same as any restaurant. She told me that I could use the door to my house if I wanted. I am subject to inspections from my county, Maryland, and soon, the FDA. With all of those checkpoints in place, I guess the door was insignificant. It would be the same as a restaurant on a first floor of a building and the neighbor above happens to have a dog. They have nothing to do with each other. My entire first floor is up to code for the commercial kitchen.

I do need to pay special attention to my clothes, especially the material, as any of us with animals would have to do if we worked with food.

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Baker_Rose Posted 15 Jul 2011 , 2:23am
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I am in PA and since I have cats and dogs in the house my separate kitchen is completely separate. I am lucky that I have a full sized door to the basement and that side of the house is directly under my kitchen, so adding a sink to the existing pipes is quite easy and economical. The same with the gas lines for the stove. I have a basement with 8-foot ceiling so that is helpful and all I need is a separating wall and door. I have to be able to separate the animals completely in an area that they can never enter. So I have two barriers, the upstairs basement door will be closed and then the kitchen door downstairs will be closed. It will be a segregated area completely.

It's pretty basic that all states ban animals from a kitchen cooking/baking for the public, the same as animals aren't allowed in restaurants unless they are official guide dogs.

Tami icon_smile.gif

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SnLSweetEscapes Posted 15 Jul 2011 , 2:15pm
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I too had to build a completly seperate "bakery" in my basement. I did not have to have a seperate entrance from outside to get into it. I have been inspected by the NY Department of Health and will have to have this repeated every year. I do have 2 dogs and no one ever said anything about it. It may be because I have the door to go down into the basement and then another door to get into my bakery which only takes up half my basement. All the rules are there for a reason but it is a pain trying to get it completed. Especially when you know that there are people out there don't do it legally. Good luck!

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Keciak Posted 15 Jul 2011 , 2:42pm
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I had 4 cats when I started baking and decorating for fun. I was good enough that people encouraged a business. I looked into it and found that in Oregon there's a no pets rule. So I decided that I would just play, work on my skills, give away to family and friends etc until such a time as I have no pets. I figured that this would be a few years in the future because cats can live long live (and they have 9 you know!). Well, within the last 2 months I have lost 2 cats to racoons. That's not the way I wanted to go into business! No fur in my cakes, but there are a few tears LOL.

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scp1127 Posted 16 Jul 2011 , 2:50am
post #10 of 17

Keciak, sorry about your pets. The bad thing for you is that in a different situation, a new kitten would help ease the pain. Well, just spend more time planning your bakery to keep your mind busy.

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lrlt2000 Posted 16 Jul 2011 , 1:55pm
post #11 of 17

Thanks everyone! I know it's based on the CFLs in my area, I'm asking what others have done that was considered "compliance." A good example was SawLil's story--having dogs, but if your kitchen has a door to prevent them from ever coming in, then that is compliant. I'm not sure that would be acceptable with our compliance officer! We'll see icon_smile.gif

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scp1127 Posted 16 Jul 2011 , 5:04pm
post #12 of 17

lrlt2000, this is a really "out there" idea, but we animal lovers have to have our pets. Is your kitchen separate or are you using your own kitchen? In my case, it's the entire first floor. This space could have been an apartment with it's own address. If your basement, garage, whatever, had a bathroom, could it have an address of its own and be considered a separate property, making the animal issue irrelevant? Just grasping at straws.

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surgery2 Posted 28 Jul 2011 , 12:11am
post #13 of 17

I could simply answer this...............dont have them then,,,,,,,,,,,,,the pets I mean. I have race horses, but they are of course outdoors at a stale and not really pets, but investments

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scp1127 Posted 28 Jul 2011 , 7:40am
post #14 of 17

surgery, we get that... we are not stupid. This thread is not about not having them. And what do race horses have to do with anything?

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angelleyes Posted 28 Jul 2011 , 7:54am
post #15 of 17

Does anyone know the rules and laws in Florida? Right now i'm still basically learning.. but when I get good enough I would love to take a go at my own buisness

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Lemmers Posted 28 Jul 2011 , 12:15pm
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I could simply answer this...............dont have them then,,,,,,,,,,,,,the pets I mean. I have race horses, but they are of course outdoors at a stale and not really pets, but investments

The whole point of the OP is to see if there is a way she CAN have her pets AND run her home cake business. Its not as simple for someone who loves their animals to just "not have them". Yes, rehoming them would make it much simpler, but the question being asked is "can this be avoided, whilst still baking for selling".

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scp1127 Posted 28 Jul 2011 , 1:21pm
post #17 of 17

I obviously was offended at the post.

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