Dogs are our favorite part of the day, next to food, of course! The holiday season is filled with sweet treats, decadent meals, and a lot of food scraps. With a little creative thinking, it’s easy to spread the bounty of your holiday feast to your best friend in a healthy and nutritious way!
Making treats in your own pantry ensures that what you are giving your dog is made with quality ingredients. Before you share the love with your pooch, however, it’s important to remember that not everything on your table is safe for your dog to eat, especially if your dog has allergies. Items that should always be avoided include meat bones, onions, raisins, grapes, and items a dog is allergic to (if applicable). Ingredients that are especially beneficial to your dog’s diet include meats, vegetables, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and yogurt.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to using your leftovers, here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Doggie Trail Mix: This is our favorite way to use up scraps and leftovers during the holidays. Rinse meat scraps so they are free of any seasoning, cut into ½” pieces and toss with leftover veggies or fruit. Spray lightly with cooking oil and place in a dehydrator or on a cookie sheet in your oven at 200 degrees until the pieces are dried out.
- SweetPUPtato Chips: Who says chips are bad for you? Sweet potatoes are as good for dogs as they are for humans! Peel that extra sweet potato and slice it into ¼ – ½” rounds and place in a dehydrator or oven at 200 degrees until they are dry and chewy.
- Meat Pops: Even dogs that don’t chew ice can’t resist these. Simply rinse seasoning from your meat leftovers and chop into ¼ – ½” pieces. Fill ice cube trays with equal parts water and chopped meat, place in the freezer until frozen.
Interested in making something a little more special for the dog in your life? Add one of these dog cookie recipes to your baking list, they’re sure to be a hit too!
Each of these treats can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 6 months, thaw slightly before serving. Whenever feeding a dog new item, it is always best to feed a small amount and watch for a reaction in case an allergy exists.