By Debra Bell

Special to the Weekly

When Chef Carl Maxwell moved to Bangor, he knew he had something unique to offer.

That’s because Maxwell isn’t just any chef. He’s a personal chef for dogs and the people who love them.

Maxwell’s specialty comes from experience. He started making fresh dog meals eight years ago when his Rottweiler Kaya was diagnosed with cancer.

“She needed a high protein diet not supported by traditional dog food,” Maxwell said. The diet was high protein and low carbs and worked well for Kaya in her final years.

When another family dog developed cancer, he continued cooking fresh dog meals. Then friends found out about his aptitude and asked him to start cooking for their dogs. And voila, a business was born.

DogWok Original Recipe includes fresh whole ingredients and no fillers. According to Maxwell, his food contains real chicken breast, beef, eggs, brown rice, potatoes, whole oats, peas, spinach, carrots, broccoli, snap peas, apples, blueberries, olive oil, kelp, flaxseed and garlic, and each batch contains Nupro, an all-natural dog supplement.

Maxwell trained at the New England Culinary Institute and has worked as a chef and kitchen manager for nearly 20 years. He worked in fine dining, catering, hotels, restaurants and retail cooking throughout the country.

But he’s happiest at the helm of his certified kitchen making food for pets. He is assisted by his fiancée, Merrit Neptune. And his clients can see the difference, both in his cooking and his dog walking service.

“They see how happy and healthy their dogs are,” Maxwell said. “[The meals are] made with fresh-quality health-food ingredients that are human-grade, not animal-grade. It is very high in protein, and there are no animal by-products or meat or bone meal, just real natural meats and fish.

“It contains a full range of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids and essential fatty acids in their natural raw forms, that they won’t get in store-bought processed food,” he said.

His service is also ideal for clients with illnesses, dietary restrictions and custom diets. It’s a bonus that he delivers.

In addition to offering personal chef services for people and pets, Maxwell shares his love of the outdoors with his clients by offering dog-walking services as well.

He shares his home in Bangor with Neptune and their two dogs Fenway, a Boston terrier-and-pug mix and Remi, a pug.

“The best part is meeting and playing with all of my new doggie friends,” he said about his job. “[I also love the] fact that I get to combine my two loves — dogs and food — to make a living.”

For information, visit or his Facebook page “Dog Wok” or call 200-4364.