How to Make Quality Dog Treats at Home

Dog treats make up a significant portion of many dogs' diets and nothing can make your furry pal more excited than the sound of a crackling bag being opened. Dog knows that within lies the most precious of treasures, the delectable doggy treat! But just like we humans love a bag of Hershey's Kisses, that doesn't necessarily make it good for us. Treats for dogs are just that, treats that can be considered in the same category as junk food for humans. Some dog treats have healthier ingredients, and others are the doggy equivalent of a Twinkie. To start with, let's look at how to buy quality dog treats at your local pet store.

First of all, you have to realize that the same nutritional conventions that apply to your dog's food also apply to his treats. This means that soy, corn, and animal by-products are low-quality fillers that are not good nutrition for your pet. Unfortunately, most cheaper dog treats contain all of these ingredients in the top five list. In addition, many dog treats utilize animal fat to make the treat smell and taste better for your fluffy friend. The bad thing about this is that animals cannot process cooked fat. If your dog has ever gotten into the cooked bacon grease, you know of the horror of which I speak.

There are some good ingredients you should keep an eye out for, however. Barley, brown rice, oatmeal, and quinoa are all grains that are good for your dog's digestive system. Also, look for animal protein (not by-products) in the top five ingredients. Finally, don't forget those veggies! A good dog treat will have some veggies in the mix as well. My favorite dog treat has sweet potato, blueberries, carrots, and apples as well as flax-seed in the mix. Vegetable matter is an important part of a dog's diet and he needs to eat food and treats and quality vegetables in the ingredients.

Of course, there are bones and chewy treats to consider as well. Many products will claim that they can act as a treat and a dental aid, which they do for the most part. Personally, however, I prefer natural bones and pig ears as chewy treats for dogs. These natural products were chewed by dogs for thousands of years, and their digestive systems know how to cope with the chewed matter. Though man-made chewy products claim to be digestible, they aren't as natural as a bone or pig ear. I have also had personal experience with a pup getting a clogged intestine because he wasn't digesting his man-made chewy properly. 

You can even feed your pup the beef or roast bones at home! But please, make sure to never feed your pup and chicken or pork bones. Their strong jaws and sharp teeth can splinter the fragile bones, creating sharp little daggers of bone that your friend can swallow. Always stick to a beef bone, and keep a close eye on your furry pal while he munches.

Certainly, you can always make your dog's treats at home! This is a great way to control the ingredients that go into your dog's treats as well as to make something tasty for someone you love. You can add veggies, flax-seed oil, and all sorts of things that are good for your dog. The negative side to homemade treats is that they have a shorter shelf life because they lack preservatives, but at least you won't be feeding the chemicals to your dog. Some of these treats are so yummy they are even appealing to people.

 In fact, to get a close approximation to chocolate treats you can add carob to your dog's treats, which tastes rich and delightful. Remember, don't add onions or raisins to any treats, because these foods can cause renal failure in dogs.

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