You’re not the only one who gets overheated in the summer sun. Like you, your dog needs a way to stay cool and hydrated throughout the sunny season. An easy way to ensure your pup beats the heat is by providing them with cold, healthy, homemade snacks.
In this article we’ll cover five simple dog treat recipes that are as flavorful as they are refreshing. We’ll go step-by-step, discussing ingredients, instructions, and the health factor of each treat.
For each of these recipes, you will need a serviceable ice tray or silicone mold and access to a freezer.
This simple treat is made to replicate the popsicles that we all crave on a hot summer’s day. With creamy peanut butter and the added sweetness of banana, as well as an edible stick to munch on, it will become one of your dog’s favorites in no time.
For this recipe you will need:
Begin by combining the yogurt, water, peanut butter, honey, and banana in a blender or food processor. Blend the ingredients using the purée function. If you don’t have a blender on hand, you can also use a fork and spoon to mash and mix although it may be a bit messy.
Once the ingredients are thoroughly blended, scoop a few spoonfuls into several dixie cups or a silicone ice cube mold. Then, place a small dog biscuit upright in the mixture to mimic a popsicle stick.
Let the treat set overnight in the freezer. In the morning, remove the treats from the dixie cups/molds and serve!
As with all the recipes found in this article, these ingredients are totally safe for your dog’s consumption and most have beneficial, as well as delicious, properties.
When choosing yogurt at the store for your treats, make sure to choose a kind with no artificial flavors of sweeteners. Plain yogurt is yummy enough for dogs and gives them a boost of calcium and protein.
In this recipe, honey will act as a natural sweetener. Pasteurized honey is safe in small servings for dogs, but it is important to keep the serving small. Just like in humans, excess sugar can cause tooth decay may cause poor nutrition if doled out too liberally. But as a rare offering with regular brushing, honey is a safe way of enhancing all kinds of homemade treats.
Bananas are an easy snack that most dogs enjoy. They aid in digestion, contain potassium, and are high in antioxidants, making them a great choice for you and your pup. However, bananas are also high in natural sugars so they should remain a rare treat overall.
Finally, peanut butter, an old standby for dog owners everywhere. Packed with protein, Vitamin E, and B3, peanut butter can be a way to trick your dog into taking their medicine or simply be a reward for a productive training session. Whatever the reason, peanut butter is safe for dogs as long as it does not contain xylitol. This sugar substitute has been shown to be highly toxic to dogs and can cause a life threatening reaction, so be sure to read the jar before including this ingredient in your treats.
Chicken and peanut butter may seem like a strange combo for human taste buds, but your dog is sure to drool over these chilled, flavorful treats.
For this recipe, you will need the following:
In a silicone ice tray, pour a small amount of chicken stock into each slot until about halfway full. Place this in the freezer for one hour to partially set.
Next, in a bowl mix the peanut butter and parsley together. The parsley is an optional additional, but it is a quick and easy way to freshen your dog’s breath. If you find that the peanut butter is too thick or difficult to mix, heat it up for a handful of seconds in the microwave.
Once combined, scoop a spoonful of this mixture on top of the frozen chicken stock. Put the tray back into the freezer and keep it there for a minimum of four hours. Then, when it is hard to the touch, feel free to pop one out and serve to your pooch as you please.
Chicken stock should be a rare treat or used as an occasional flavor booster for dogs with picky palates. However, when you are picking up your stock for this recipe, be sure to carefully read the label. Onions and garlic are toxic to dogs and can cause intestinal distress, so avoid stock with those ingredients. It is also best to choose a low sodium option.
Parsley may be optional in this recipe, but it is highly recommended. This leafy green is full of valuable vitamins and nutrients. It’s also a natural way to improve your dog’s breath. However, Hamburg and Italian parsley are dangerous for dogs so be sure to choose a curly leafed variety at the store.
This homemade treat is full of natural sweetness, high in fiber, and easy as pie to make. While the presence of pumpkin may make you think of Fall, serving it as a cold treat will make it as good as a milkshake to your dog.
For these sweet treats, you’ll need:
Place the banana and the pumpkin purée into a blender, or mash by hand, until smooth. Pause and mix in the yogurt and honey.
Scoop the mixture into a silicone mold and place in the freezer overnight.
Come morning, you’ll have a sweet, icy reward for your pup!
Pumpkin is a high fiber ingredient known for helping settle indigestion in dogs with the added bonus of being loaded with prebiotics, antioxidants, Vitamin C, and more. Unflavored pumpkin purée or homemade pumpkin mash is a safe and nutritious snack for your dog.
This two ingredient recipe is incredibly simple to make and so delicious you may consider indulging in it yourself. These treats are full of tropical flavors and can even be added to your dog’s water bowl as a yummy ice cube.
For this recipe, you will need:
Using a spoon or melon baller, scoop out ¼ of a watermelon into a bowl, removing any seeds as you go. Set aside the rest for a later batch or as a snack for yourself.
Combine the melon with one can of coconut milk in the blender, puréeing until smooth.
Pour into your mold and freeze through the night. Once set, pop the treats out and enjoy the smile on your dog’s face!
Coconut milk is a safe additive to dog treats and has been shown to help bolster immunities, but it still best in moderation. Be sure to pick up an unsweetened variety from your local grocery store to avoid excess sugar.
Watermelon is a nutrient rich food that is as healthy for you as it is for your dog. The fruit itself is 92% water, making it a great way to combine snacking and hydration on hot days. As long as the seeds and the ring are cast away, it is safe for your dog to munch on throughout the day.
Nothing is better for breakfast than a pot of yogurt topped with fresh berries. Share this sweet morning indulgence with your dog by preparing these treats the night before.
To make this treat you’ll need:
Wash and clean the berries before dicing and halving them. Once they are prepared, sprinkle them generously into an empty ice cube tray or silicone mold.
Cover the berries with yogurt until each slot is filled.
Finally, place in the fridge for the night and serve as a breakfast treat.
Strawberries are filled with water, fiber, and Vitamin C, resulting in a healthy and delicious snack for your pup. The main problem with strawberries is that they can be a choking hazard due to their unwieldy size. When preparing them for your dog, be sure to remove the leaves and chop the berry into bite sized pieces. They can also be mashed or blended.
Similarly, blueberries are also a healthy and seasonal treat in the summer. However, they also pose the threat of choking and are best served halved.
With these five easy recipes, you and your pup should be set on treats for the rest of summer. Check with your vet for any specific dietary recommendations or cautions, but most of all remember to stay cool and have fun!
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