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Pet Project How one former veterinarian wowed major pet-product retailers--and got her invention on their shelves

By Don Debelak

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The Entrepreneur:Dr. Mary Burns, 49, former veterinarian and founder of Veterinary Ventures Inc.based in Union, Kentucky

Product Description:The Drinkwell is a pet fountain with free-falling water, a one-gallon-plus water reservoir, a pump and a charcoal filter for removing bad tastes and odors. The Drinkwell offers pets a daylong source of fresh water and has a suggested retail price of $49.95 to $74.95, depending on size.

Burns initially got the idea because her cat, Buckwheat, would only drink running water from a faucet. Tired of getting up during the night to give Buckwheat a drink, Burns created the Drinkwell after observing a decorative desktop water fountain that seemed to offer a solution for faucet-drinking cats.

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