The Work We Do: Kim Loper, Harbor Pet

My name is Kim Loper. I am the co-owner of Harbor Pet in Greenport.

We purchased the store back in 2014. We changed locations, expanded and incorporated our dog bakery, which is how we started in the industry, into one location with our retail and our grooming.

Soup to nuts, whatever you need for your cat or dog, we can order if it’s not already on our shelves. We do food, treats, collars, leashes, coats, supplements, everything you’re going to need. 

We bake all natural dog treats using the spent grains from Greenport Harbor Brewery to make one of our treats called the Growler. 

We have wheat-free, we use a lot of sweet potato which helps with digestion, we also have a whole line of decorated treats that look like people cookies. We also bake birthday cakes.

It’s like, 25 years now that I’ve been baking for myself, family’s dogs, friends’ dogs.

One of my dogs developed allergies, so it was even more important to try and get them in better health. I started with farmers markets from Montauk to Long Beach and enjoyed it. I saw there was such a demand for it. It just became a passion of mine.

Between intake of the dogs, outtake of the dogs, helping new pet owners who just adopted or got a puppy. We do a little baking everyday, trying to keep everything fresh and new.

The locals are awesome. I love being part of the community. I come from a small town, so having my business in a small town, you feel a part of something bigger than yourself.

It’s an industry where everybody’s happy.

Dogs are coming in, and out for grooming appointments all day. You get to see your old favorites, new puppies, you get to watch them grow. It’s a happy environment.

Dogs — or cats — just bring an amount of joy to your life. It’s unconditional love no matter what.

You walk through that door and you could have been gone five minutes or four hours, and that dog is so happy to see you. You don’t really get that anywhere else.

I’ve always bonded with dogs the most. There’s just something about hugging a dog or having a dog in your life that just makes you whole.

Harbor Pet is located at 120 Main St, Greenport.

“The Work We Do” is a Suffolk Times multimedia project profiling workers on the North Fork. It is made possible by Peconic Landing in Greenport. See photos on Instagram @thesuffolktimes.