How to Make Easy and Healthy Frozen Dog Treats
Great for Teething Puppies and Dogs
My sweet little 6 month old Shepherd Mix just turned on me. But I know she doesn’t mean it.
It feels like just yesterday she was 10 weeks old - fragile, gentle, and always eager to please with those floppy ears and big brown eyes lined in perfect black eye liner. But infancy never lasts long with puppies. My sweet baby Bella has been replaced by a rapidly growing adolescent, full of puppy spunk and what feels like teenage angst. The trifecta of barking, yapping, and chewing. It’s repetitive and constant but not entirely her fault. I have a teething puppy on my hands.
Much like humans, puppies lose teeth continually for several months, off and on. It’s often painful and uncomfortable. Most puppies have their full set of adult teeth by approximately 8 months. During this time puppies want to chew to alleviate the pain and to loosen their baby teeth.
These liver cubes are sure to please any puppy or adult dog. They will keep your pup busy for at least a few minutes. They are cheap, healthy, and very easy to make. Bella absolutely loves them.
Ice cubes are safe for puppies and dogs – my 4 year old Shepherd Mix loves them too.
Change up the ingredients to keep your dogs interested!
You can use any combination of ingredients for these. There are many human foods that are beneficial to your dog’s health. Sweet potatoes, carrots, liver, and gizzards are just a few examples. Read more about safe foods for dogs.
Use any type of molds. I make discs with old Tupperware dishes for outside fun. Small cubes with ice trays for bedtime and the crate. And Popsicle sized ones for afternoon snacks.
Organ Meat Is Good For Dogs
Of course you could make these vegetarian. But why? Small amounts of organ meat is good for dogs! Liver for example, has Vitamin A, copper, iron, zinc, phosphorus, protein, B vitamins, and Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids - all of which are excellent for your dog! Chicken gizzards have protein, iron, minerals, vitamins C, E, and B, and they contain glucosamine which helps with arthritis problems. Your dog will love organ meats and get healthier in the process.
It is important to remember that organ meat should be fed in moderation. Too much liver is harmful to both dogs and humans, and can actually cause an overdose of Vitamin A. The general feeding guideline for feeding liver is as follows:
- Small Breed: twice a week
- Medium Breed: four times a week
- Large Breed: 6 times a week.
I feed all organ meats in moderation and plump my cubes mostly with sweet potatoes, organic eggs, and/or carrots. Each of my frozen liver cubes contains only a small amount of liver, so the above guideline can be increased. Use your own judgment here based on the size of your dog and the amount of liver used.
A word on organic: it is pretty important to at least consider buying organic organ meats. The organs, particularly the liver, process harmful toxins from the body. Do your dog a favor and make sure there are no hormones or antibiotics in his organ meat.
- 4 cups Water
- 1 Sweet Potato
- 3/4 pound Organic Chicken Liver
- Chop sweet potato into cubes. Place in medium saucepan. Cover with at least 1 inch of water (the more water, the more ice cubes you'll make). Boil for 10-15 minutes until soft. Mash slightly with a potato masher.
- Carefully add liver to boiling water. Bring back to a boil. Turn off heat. Cover. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Remove lid. Using the potato masher, mash liver potato mixture slightly. Remove from heat completely. Let cool 30 minutes.
- Using a slotted spoon, spoon chunks into ice cube trays. Be careful to place some chunks into each cube, filing each tray approximately halfway. Then, using a ladle, spoon the broth into the trays over the chunks. Carefully place in freezer until solid. Then pop them out and go and play with your dog!
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
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© 2013 Robyn D Bera