When it comes to treats for your pets, put yourself in their fur. Would you rather eat from a box or a can every single day of your life or would you jump at the chance to have something fresh and homemade? Have you ever seen your pet get excited about a bag of dry kibble compared to the tail-wagging jitters that take over when they smell real burgers and chicken on the grill…or your plate? That's enough to confirm that homemade is better and tastier for all of us.
When you make treats yourself, you also have the added benefit of controlling all of the ingredients. Be sure to steer clear of xylitol, onions, garlic, chocolate and raisins as these can be extremely toxic for pets. Use grocery store stops for collecting ingredients to cook up some fun recipes for your pets without those unheard-of, potentially unhealthy ingredients! Here are five different recipe ideas to get you started!
Pumpkin & Banana Pupsicles
Summertime is almost here, and you know what that means! It's time to indulge in frozen treats for the whole family. Include your pup in the fun with this awesome recipe.
2 very ripe bananas mashed
1/4 cup pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling
Place silicone molds on a baking sheet or cutting board that will fit in your freezer, with enough space for the molds to lay flat
Combine spoons full of pumpkin and mashed banana until molds are filled
Freeze until solid, for about three to four hours
Remove treats from molds and store in an air-tight freezer bag for up to three months
Bunnies aren't the only animal fond of carrots, dogs can love them too! And let's be honest, who doesn't love carrot cake? Your dog will love this version of a true classic.
1 cup applesauce — plain, unsweetened, without additives
1/4 cup peanut butter — raw and natural, unsalted, unsweetened, free of any flavors and no xylitol
2 large eggs
4 cups oat flour
1 cup grated, organic baby carrots
1/2 cup coconut flakes — unsweetened natural
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the applesauce, peanut butter and eggs until blended
Add oat flour, carrots and coconut flakes just until incorporated
If you pinch a piece and it crumbles, add a little water, if it’s really sticky, you’ll need to add a little more oat flour
Transfer dough to a lightly sprinkled oat flour surface and knead five to six times
Using a rolling pin sprinkled with oat flour, roll out the dough to a 1/2-inch thickness
Use cookie cutters to cut out desired shapes and transfer to prepared baking sheet
Bake until the treats are dry and edges are golden, about 18-20 minutes
Sweet Potato Dog Chews
If you avoid rawhide products in your household sweet potato chews are a great alternative!
Two to three sweet potatoes
Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit
Wash and dry sweet potatoes
Thinly slice potatoes lengthwise to 1/4 – 1/3 inch wide max
Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Bake for three hours, turning over halfway through
They should be dry yet chewy
Store in the fridge or freezer to prevent mold
Peanut Butter & Banana Pupsicles
If your dog isn't a fan pf pumpkin, fear not, they can still enjoy a pupsicle on a warm summer day! Checkout this recipe that uses peanut butter, instead.
Two very ripe bananas mashed
2 to 4 tablespoons peanut butter
Place your silicone molds on a baking sheet or cutting board that will fit in your freezer, with enough space for the molds to lay flat
In a small, microwave-safe bowl, microwave peanut butter for 10 to 20 seconds and stir until pourable
Add a spoonful of peanut butter and enough mashed banana to fill the mold
Use a knife to swirl them together
Tuna Puffs for Cats…or Dogs
The cat will really have it out for the dog if they don't get to sample these tasty treats!
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
3 oz can tuna in water — no salt added
1 tablespoon tuna water
1-2 tablespoons extra flour for dusting dough
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
In a food processor, blend tuna, water and egg
Add in flour and mix well
Place dough on floured surface and roll with a rolling pin until as thick as a pie crust