If you feel as other dog lovers feel, your pet is thought of and treated like a member of the family. Homemade dog treats are a wonderful way to show your love. Your pet is just as important to you as the other family members. You watched him grow from puppy hood to a fully matured dog that has a personality, likes and dislikes and returns unconditional love to you.
Just as you take all precautions with your family’s health by eating the right foods including healthy snacks, you look out for how you indulge your pet as well. It is just as much fun for pet parents to give their pets homemade dog treats and healthy snacks as it is for pets to eat them.
Unfortunately, the majority of pet snacks sold in stores are far from healthy. In fact, many of them are made in China even though that fact isn’t printed on the label. Very few commercial pet snacks bother to have the ingredients listed on the label. You can be more than certain that preservatives are included plus fillers that give the snack more bulk and make it taste good to the dog.
For example, many dog treats print only the company’s name that is distributing the product, but they don’t state where the treat was originally processed. If you notice that the barcode on the package has the first three number sequences of 690, 991 or 692, the product was made in China. What’s so dangerous about dog treats made in China?
Hartz, a leading distributor of dog products in the US, recently recalled their Chicken Chews™ Soft and Tender and their Oinkies®Pig Skin Twists wrapped with Chicken because trace amounts of antibiotic residue was discovered. Of course, Hartz is not the only dog food distributor that had to recall products because of contamination. Over 500 dogs died from eating jerky treats that contained glycerin from 2010 – 2012.
The only way to avoid feeding your dog poison or to make sure that his snacks are healthy for him is to make them yourself. Even empty calories will eventually add to his weight without providing any nutritional value.
Dogs are carnivorous as evidenced by their teeth and short gastrointestinal systems. Some owners believe that if they feed their dog grains and vegetables only, they have a healthier diet, but meat is necessary for a well-rounded diet. A good treat for dogs that is not recognized by most owners is any kind of real bone except chicken and turkey bones. Bones satisfy the need to chew and their stomachs benefit from chewing bones. You can purchase chew bones at any butcher shop if you are a vegetarian.
If you want to make your own dog treats for training purposes or just because you want to indulge your pet, there are several recipes all over the Internet. Please be aware that some animals have allergies and watch your pet’s reaction to treats that include wheat, milk and eggs.
Warning: Never include sugar in your pet’s treats! Dogs are unable to process sugar.
Included below are two recipes to begin making your own treats. You can easily find the ingredients in your kitchen cupboard and it will take you less than an hour to prepare. Go and enjoy making these tasty treats for your best friend.
Sunflower Dog Biscuits
· 2 Cups Flour
· 1/3 Cups. Oatmeal
· ½ Cups Shelled Sunflower Seeds
· 2 Tablespoons Flaxseed oil
· ½ Cup Chicken Broth
· 2 Whole Eggs-mixed with ¼ Cup milk
· 1 Whole Egg-beaten
· 2 Tsp. Fresh Mint (natural breath freshener)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, oatmeal and seeds. Add oil, chicken broth and egg and milk mixture.
Let rest for 30 minutes. Then, pour onto floured surface and roll out until ¼” thick. Use your choice of cookie cutter and brush with the beaten egg for a nice glow. Bake 30 min. until golden. Let cool.
Indulge your dog with the delightful flavor of a homemade treat.
PUMPKIN DOG TREAT RECIPE
· 15 oz. mashed pure cooked pumpkin
· 3/4 cup of oatmeal. You can mix this dry–no need to cook it first
· 1/2 cup dry powdered milk
Directions: Preheat oven to 300 F.
Mix all ingredients together. Drop small spoonfuls (I use about half of a tablespoon) onto a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
If you’d like to make bite sized cookies for small dogs, training rewards or just small treats, you can use a pastry bag and squeeze out rosettes about the size of a large button for tasty bite sized cookies!
Depending on the size, this recipe will make around 20 treats. This healthy homemade dog treat is perfect for training or just plain treating your special friend.