South Hero-Based Spot the Dog Makes Oprah's 'Favorite Things' List | True 802 | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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South Hero-Based Spot the Dog Makes Oprah's 'Favorite Things' List

Published November 20, 2019 at 10:00 a.m.

A pooch wearing Spot the Dog gear - COURTESY OF SPOT THE DOG
  • Courtesy Of Spot The Dog
  • A pooch wearing Spot the Dog gear

One Vermont business has a new best friend — and it ain't Fido.

Spot the Dog, a company founded by outgoing Green Mountain Power president and CEO Mary Powell and run by her husband, Mark Brooks, has landed on Oprah Winfrey's Favorite Things gift list. The designation means the South Hero-based company, which makes reflective vests and collars for pups, can expect a surge in orders this holiday season.

In fact, the orders are already pouring in from around the country: Powell said the company did a year's worth of business in the week after the November 8 announcement. The list appears in the print issue of O, The Oprah Magazine that hit newsstands on Tuesday.

"The Oprah effect is profound," Powell said. "To have somebody like Oprah, who is known for loving dogs, endorse our product does just about leave us speechless. We're very excited."

On her list of 79 gifts, Oprah mentioned two specific Spot the Dog products: The Flip and Puppy Plaid reflective bandanas. Both were on sale with a 20 percent discount on the company's website with the code — what else? — OPRAH. 

"When your pup's gotta go, he's gotta go," says the description on the list. "These bandanas — made of reflective nylon that cars can't miss — will keep him safe on your nightly strolls."

Spot the Dog isn't the first Vermont company to catch Oprah's eye. Runamok Maple made the list in 2016, while two local brands earned spots in 2017: Farmhouse Pottery and Mount Mansfield Maple Products. The latter also got the nod in 2018.

Spot the Dog nearly missed its golden opportunity. Brooks initially thought the email from Oprah's team requesting some products to test was a fake. He was nervous about responding without first getting approval from his nephew, who runs the company's web operations.

"It was just a very funny interaction," Brooks said.

The original print version of this article was headlined "Dog On"