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10 Tasty Treats You Didn't Know Your Dog Could Eat
Add some spice to your pet's life!
We all know there are certain types of “people food” that are good for your do such as carrots, peas, apples, and chicken. We also know there are certain kinds of foods that are very bad for your dog such as chocolate, grapes, raisins, and avocados. However, have you ever thought about all the tasty treats that lie in between those two extremes? There are plenty of delicious meals that we humans enjoy on a regular basis that are absolutely acceptable for our dogs to indulge in as well. From breakfast and lunch, to dinner and dessert, this list of various canine snacks is sure to delight and surprise you!
1. Frosted Cupcakes
Who doesn't love frosted cupcakes? Well dogs are no exception! The properly prepared and flavored cupcake can be the perfect way to treat your dog on a special occasion, holiday, or just because you feel like spoiling them. The following recipe is one my family likes to use for “puppy parties” a.k.a. whenever we celebrate a birthday. To make cupcakes you and your dogs can enjoy you will need the following:
- 2 cups of water
- 2 bananas
- 1/8 teaspoon of vanilla
- 3 cups whole wheat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons honey
- Non-fat cream cheese ( for frosting)
- 3 teaspoons cinnamon ( for frosting)
- 2 teaspoons honey ( for frosting)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla ( for frosting)
Preheat 350 degrees. Combine all cupcake ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir until blended. Grease 8 x 8 pan with butter and pour mixture inside. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of cupcake comes out clean. Mix frosting ingredients in a bowl and beat mixture until fluffy. Top cupcakes with frosting once they have cooled down and then serve! Save the extras in the freezer for a future special event.
2. Frozen Yogurt
Dogs are more sensitive to the heat than people are. They can overheat easily, especially in the summertime. Therefore they are bound to love an ice cold cup of frozen yogurt on a hot summer day. The best part is (other than how refreshingly delicious they are) how simple they are to make! All you need is a natural plain yogurt, small plastic or paper cups, and a freezer. It is much better to buy small cups and trim down the lid, making it a perfect sized bowl for your dog to savor. You can even use an ice tray! Although the pops tend to last longer while inside a container. Place yogurt inside and freeze overnight. Yummy for you and your pet! Remember, regular ice cream or any excess dairy can be harmful to your dog and can cause GI upset.
3. Sweet Potato Chips
Thinly slice up a sweet potato and cook each slice for a few minutes and presto! You have a great source of dietary fiber, and vitamins such as A, C, and B6. Don’t skip over the simple and try out these organic chewy treats! They are often sold in stores as dehydrated slices, which are also fantastic! The great thing about this treat is that your dog can chew on a slice of sweet potato for a decent amount of time, same way they would savor a regular bone.
4. Oatmeal Cereal
Hot oatmeal cereal has been a classic dish for generations. Who would have thought you could be feeding it to your dog as well! Oatmeal actually has several ingredients that can be beneficial to you and your dog, especially if they are allergic or sensitive to wheat products, so don’t hold back surprising them with this savory snack! For one, it is low in fat content and high in fiber. Second, it is great for senior dogs as it is known to aid in digestion and produces probiotics. Always feed plain and unflavored, save the brown sugar and almonds for your own breakfast bowl.
5. Scrambled Eggs
Switch up your dog’s breakfast with a little scrambled eggs every now and then! Keep them simple and plain— do not add any salt, milk or cheese. Scramble up 1-2 eggs, depending on your dog’s size, and cook thoroughly. Raw egg consumption is hazardous to your dog’s health just like it is to our own. Serve warm or even cold, they taste good both ways. Great source of protein for both you and your furry companion, that will also help ensure you start the day feeling lively.
6. Peanut Butter Cookies
Many of you already probably know that peanut butter makes a great snack for a dog, but how many of you have ever made your puppy peanut butter cookies? That’s what I thought. Alright here we go, for this sinful sweet snack you will need:
- 3 cups of whole wheat flour
- ½ cup of rolled oats
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 and ½ cups of milk
- 1 ¼ cups of peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon honey
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl first, then add wet ingredients (peanut butter, milk, honey. Knead the dough with your hands. Don’t worry, it will be a stiff dough. Roll out dough and cut into desired shapes. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool and then serve. Tasty for humans and canines.
7. Carrot Cake
Carrots are an extremely common dog snack that many of us use as pet treats already, so why not switch it up a bit and give your dog some crunchy carrot cake? To dress up this already decadent dessert try adding the cream cheese frosting from item listing # 1 (frosted cupcakes). For the carrot cake batter you will need:
- 2 cups of shredded carrots
- 3 eggs
- ½ cup of unsweetened apple sauce
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- ½ cup of rolled oats
- 3 cups of whole wheat flour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a large 13x9 inch cake pan. In a bowl mix carrots, applesauce and eggs. In another bowl, mix together rolled oats, flour and cinnamon. Slowly add ingredients in dry bowl to the carrots, applesauce and eggs until they are thoroughly blended together in one bowl. Add mixture to cake pan and let bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Add frosting if desired once the cake has cooled down completely. Should stay fresh in your fridge for up to 2 weeks, or you can freeze the leftovers.
8. Fruit Salad
This is one of my favorite meals to make for myself, and I know my dog feels the same! Dogs seem to love fresh fruit! The properly prepared fruit salad can be a nutritious and healthy snack for your dog. Try out this recipe: (use desired amount of each type of fruit and chopped each fruit into small bite-sized pieces.)
*Caution: grapes, raisins, peaches and plums are very bad for dogs! Do not give them to your dogs—EVER! Even tiny amounts of these foods have been known to cause kidney failure and death in dogs. Just don’t risk it, please!
Food Your Dog Should Not Eat
BAD FOR DOGS
caffeine and alcohol
9. Warm Popcorn
Plain unbuttered and unsalted popcorn make for a fine treat for you and your dog. Snuggle up with your pet and a bowl of popcorn and give him or her a few bites every now and then to munch on as a reward. Popcorn when left plain (light salting and light buttering are okay) are lower in fat content on the snack scale than you would think. If anything they are somewhat high in calories, so carefully monitor how many you pieces you let them eat to avoid creating a pooch with a pooch belly.
Pasta with Chickpeas & Zucchini
This recipe is pretty self-explanatory. Prepare the pasta, any kind of pasta you prefer, according to the directions on the box or as you normally would for your own dinner. While the pasta is cooking, wash and chop a zucchini and cook on mid-heat in a medium-sized skillet. Then, open a can of chickpeas, rinse them under hot water and let drain. Strain pasta when done (about 10 minutes) and then toss with zucchini and chickpeas. Give your dog a small serving size (according to their weight) and then you both can have a relaxing Italian evening.
Always Remember To Treat Them Like Family
*Remember folks, treats are called treats for a reason. Any type of “people food” in excessive amounts can potentially cause medical issues and obesity for your beloved pet. These snacks & meals are in no way shape or form meant to replace your dog’s current diet plan.
They say variety is the spice of life. These are simply suggestions to help spice up your dog’s daily routine.
An easy way to keep your dog’s health (and your own) in check is to not give your pet more than 1-2 treat servings per day. That being said, each serving of treats completely depends on the type, (For example: two carrots are a lot different than two puppy cupcakes with frosting) and therefore each item of food you give your dog should always be preceded with caution.
One last thing, just because you now know your dog can eat apples doesn't mean you can be lazy and toss one in their bowl instead of preparing them a real meal.
Your dog loves to change it up as much as you do— so don’t be afraid to try out these new recipes! Best of luck to you all, Bon Appetite!
* Helpful Dog Hint For Upset Tummy!*
If your dog has an upset tummy, try feeding them small amounts of plain boiled chicken and brown rice for a few straight meals. This always helps get my little Chihuahua-Daschund mix get back into solid shapes after she has an upset stomach. Always provide fresh, clean, filtered water bowl for your dog! Pets can become dehydrated a lot easier than you may think, especially after having had diarrhea or nausea.