Random Facts: Dog Biscuits

The earliest reference to “dog biscuits” in the Oxford English Dictionary refers to “An advertisement of dog biscuits manufactured by Mr Smith of Maidenhead” in 1823. In the late 1820s, Mr Smith was reported to make five tons of dog biscuits a week.

The OED also tells us that “dog biscuit” in 1925 was military slang for army mattresses.

Before we had dog biscuits, “dog’s bread” was an expression used for canine snacks, though “pan de perro” (dog’s bread) in 17th century Spain was also used for a preparation of poison and ground glass designed to kill dogs.

The first to market dog biscuits worldwide was James Pratt, an electrical and lightning rod salesman of Ohio around 1860. One employee at Pratt’s factory in London was Charles Cruft who later founded Cruft’s Dog Show.

The European Patent Register of worldwide patents includes 76 dog biscuit related patents, which include a fire hydrant shaped dog biscuit baking tray, a biscuit “for controlling malodorous breath in dogs” and a deodorant dog biscuit.