If you’ve owned a pet long enough, chances are you’ve heard of the dangers of feeding “people food” to your pet. I’ll never forget a friend telling me her dog had been sick in the night. When I asked her if he ate anything different the day before, she said, “Well, I mean he ate what we ate.” Ugh. I cringed. There are many foods that are perfectly acceptable for our pets to eat, but there are some that can be harmful and even poisonous to dogs and cats. As responsible pet owners, we must be constantly aware of what our pets are ingesting--from the leftovers we slide off our plates into their bowls to the scraps that “accidentally” fall on the floor during a meal. Ensuring that all of the extra treats we feed aren’t making our pets overweight is also something to consider!
In honor of National Cook for Your Pet Day, which is celebrated November 1st, let’s take a look at some foods that are ok to include on your dog or cat’s menu. With the holidays fast approaching, it can be fun to include your pets in your holiday baking rituals.
3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Pumpkin Dog Treats
The obvious first choice for cooking for your pet is to whip up some dog biscuits. We’ve made these already this year and my youngest decided he wants to make some to hand out to the trick-or-treating dogs this Halloween. This easy-to-make treat includes a few healthy ingredients such as pumpkin and peanut butter!
Bacon Bark Sticks
Did someone say bacon? All I have to do is take the bacon out of the package and my dog is my new foot-warmer, salivating at my side. So, when I came across this recipe by Spoon Fork Bacon that has just six ingredients, one of them being delicious, savory bacon, I was game! These can be baked in a snap and will not disappoint your pooch!
- 1 egg
- 1 ¼ cups goat’s milk
- 1 tbs honey
- 4 tbs bacon fat
- ¼ cup bacon, crumbled
- 2 ¾ cups oat flour
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Whisk together the egg, milk, honey, bacon fat and bacon.
- Slowly stir in the flour – ½ cup at a time.
- Knead the dough until combined.
- Roll dough into a 4” x 12” rectangle. You may need to flour your surface to prevent sticking.
- Using a pizza cutter, cut out 4” x ½” sticks.
- Line the sticks on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 30-35 minutes.
- Cool before serving. Store extra sticks in an airtight container and refrigerate up to a week.
Chunky Meat and Rice Cat Food
Cats are meat eaters by design, and they need plenty of protein for a strong heart, good vision, fit weight and a healthy reproductive system. Beef, chicken, turkey, and small amounts of lean deli meats are great sources of protein for your cat. This recipe by Savvy Homemade combines chicken with rice (another good source of protein) to provide a yummy meal for your cat that is anything but ordinary cat food.
- ½ pound ground meet (chicken, beef, lamb or turkey)
- ¼ cup rice
- 1 large hard-boiled egg
- 4 tsp olive oil
- 1 cup chicken stock
- Mash boiled egg.
- Put all ingredients into a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-low heat.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until the stock reduces.
- Remove the mixture from the heat and allow it to cool completely.
- Blend the mixture in a food processor until mashed together.
- Store in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Goat’s Milk Catsicles
Let’s not forget treats for our cats! These hydrating catsicles are good on a warm day or if you’re concerned your cat is not drinking enough. With just two ingredients--goat’s milk, a protein of your choice (shrimp, chicken, tuna), and an ice cube tray, you’ll be all set to whip up a batch of these goodies from The Catington Post.
- 1 cup raw goat’s milk
- ¼ cup tuna, baby shrimp, diced chicken or your cat’s favorite treats
- Ice cube tray
- Fill each compartment of the ice cube tray halfway full of raw goat’s milk.
- Toss a few pieces of your protein into the tray.
- Put ice cube tray in the freezer until frozen.
Fun in the Kitchen
So, tie on your apron and get cookin’! It can be so much fun to prepare a dish for your dog or cat that is different from the kibble they scarf down 365 days of the year. Your pet will appreciate the change in his menu. Try one of our recipes or experiment with other “pet-approved” meals. But be sure to stick to foods that are safe for your pet. If you’re wondering what foods can be harmful, make sure you check out our post, Poisonous Foods For Pets.