In this week’s episode of The Hunting Influence Podcast, Aaron is joined by Erik Rivera, Founder and CEO of Honest Paws.

They discuss the art of bringing order to entrepreneurship chaos, the core principles of entrepreneurial success, and the biggest challenges in CBD for the pets business.

Key facts

  • Erik’s LinkedIn 
  • Honest Paws website
  • Honest Paws is the market leader in CBD (Cannabidiol) for pet products
  • Honest Paws “CBD Oils for Dogs” was voted best oils for Dogs by HealthCanal
  • Honest Paws CBD Oils are 100% organic full spectrum Hemp Oil
  • Erik started Honest paw in 2018, it’s based in San Juan
  • Erik is the Founder of CertaPet
  • Erik is a former Explosive Ordnance Disposal Officer in the US Navy 
  • Erik is a former investor in Sellbrite and AdEspresso

Key takeaways

  • Erik started his career as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Officer at the United States Navy in his early 20s
  • At the age of 29, Erik quit the US Navy and started selling niche products over eCommerce. This was the start of his entrepreneurial journey 
  • In 2010, Erik moved to San Diego and started dropshipping the niche specific products through Shopify
  • Erik learned leadership principles, calculating business risk, and surviving chaotic situations from his naval experience
  • Erik believes that learning and minimizing the possible downsides in business can make any venture successful 
  • Through Honest Paws, Erik aims to offer 100% organic and all-natural products for dogs, cats, and horses
  • Honest Paws’ product line consists of Balms, Bites, CBD Infused Peanut Butter Pouches, CBD Oils, Calm Vests, Dog Shampoo, Hemp Chews For Dogs, Probiotics, Turkey Tail Mushroom, Wag n Rinse, etc
  • Erik currently runs three brands focused on pets health and related products: CertaPet, Honest Paws, and Veterinarians.org
  • Erik loves his team and credits Honest Paws major successes to them 
  • Through CertaPet, Erik helps pet lovers with pets therapist, which is the first telehealth company/service for pets
  • Erik says that licensing, approaching CBD farms for production, and setting up payment methods for a wider audience were the biggest challenges he faced in his CBD business
  • Erik believes that a thorough market is crucial before launching CBD products in any market, as people are unaware of its benefits
  • Erik wants to educate his audience on the benefits of CBD oils for pets. He does this by keeping the Honest Paws website updated with important information 
  • Honest Paws USP (unique selling proposition) is organic products and leniency in working terms with non-profit and animal healthcare mission-driven organizations 
  • Erik’s products are available on Amazon, in retail stores, and at vet clinics as well as Honest Paws’ website 
  • Erik prefers to hire skilled and dedicated employees for each task at Honest Paws and other business operations as he believes that giving employees multiple tasks without considering their skill set creates chaos at work
  • Erik plans to invest further into creating businesses such as digital health facilities for pets, as well as construction services for business facilities 

Quick-Fire Round

Erik morning routine
  • Erik goes to the gym every morning
Erik’s favorite resource

Erik’s favorite hundred dollar purchase

  • Air fryer 
Erik’s favorite place
  • New York City, London, Asia 
Erik’s favorite brand
Erik’s advice to entrepreneurs
  • Choose your product wisely and grow your skillset and knowledgebase in line with the products you choose

Key resources


“Entrepreneurship is a process of bringing order in chaos. Mastering it makes you a good problem-solver.”

Erik Rivera
Founder & CEO of Honest Paws

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