Homemade Dog Treats
Homemade Dog Treats
U.S. pet owners spent almost $7 billion on treats for dogs and cats in 2019 (market research firm Packaged Facts). In the 2020 stay-at-home COVID world, it will likely be even more. But what is in this mountain of store-bought treats? You may not want to know. The FDA is tasked with regulation and safety of all food, including pet food. But you don’t have to dig very deep to find some really disturbing information.
Keep it simple.
Humans obsess about our own diets. A recent survey found that the average adult will try 126 different diets in their lifetime. Information is everywhere. Variety may be the spice of life… for humans. But not for dogs. Find what they like and stick to it.
Here is a simple rule for pets… and humans. If ANY processed food has 32 ingredients you probably should not eat it. Especially if some of those ingredients require a chemistry degree to understand. The FDA requires producers to list all the ingredients, but not where they come from or how they were handled. Many store-bought treats may also be very high in calories. That can cause weight problems, especially in older dogs.
Skip the uncertainty.
pet treats yourself.
Since wolves are dog’s ancient ancestors, many pet owners think dogs are just meat-eaters / carnivores. Modern dogs evolved around humans and ate a wider variety of food scraps. But just because dogs will eat about anything, it doesn’t mean they should.
Meats, chicken, turkey, carrots, salmon (cooked not raw), pumpkin, sweet potatoes (skin removed), egg yolk or cooked whole egg, apples, oatmeal, peanut butter (careful – NO xylitol sweetener – use only natural), bananas, blueberries, green beans, rice, mango, cantaloupe, garbanzo beans (plain – no hummus)
Avocados, alcohol, raw yeast bread dough, fruit seeds or pits, foods with caffeine, chocolate, cooked bones, grapes or raisins, macadamia nuts, garlic, onions, xylitol (artificial sweetener), milk, mushrooms, walnuts, cinnamon, nutmeg, potato skins, raw potatoes, salty foods
A dog lover’s story
Patrick makes dehydrated foods for his Siberian huskies, Conrad and Cara, using sweet potato and a combination of raw meats. Patrick dehydrates his homemade dog food until crispy and breakable, allowing him to snap off little pieces for his huskies when they behave. Plus, the crunchy treats keep Conrad’s and Cara’s teeth clean and plaque-free.
Patrick uses quality ingredients to fuel his dogs through hikes, adventures, and outback trips but still saves money compared to buying packaged treats. A helpful tip from Patrick: partially freeze your meats for easy slicing before dehydrating. This way you can make uniform thin slices for extra crispy jerky. Then strap a pack to your dog so that your canine can carry their own lightweight food.
makes it easy
Dehydrating is a great way to make healthy and nutritious treats your pet will love. Easily turn meats, vegetables, and other simple ingredients into easy to handle treats you can carry in your pocket and require no refrigeration.
Meats can be raw or cooked. When using raw meat, follow the same guidelines as when making jerky for humans. Your pet will love you for it.
Sure, you could make dog treats in any food dehydrator, but why not choose a dehydrator that can do it all? The Sahara is the world’s first and only dehydrator that quickly folds to 1/3 its size for easy storage. Even with this convenience, nothing is sacrificed. With 700W of heat, Sahara powers through the biggest loads of jerky. The patented dual temperature sensors also control heat for drying of delicate herbs and even flowers. Sahara has two independent 350W heaters to kick start the drying process, but automatically switches back to one heater as the food dries – another industry first. And of course, Sahara looks great on your kitchen counter.
a New World
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7 Free Large Silicone Mats with the Sahara (Stainless Steel Shelves). Simply add the Sahara Dehydrator (Stainless Steel Shelves) and 7 Large Silicone Mats to your cart. Discount applied automatically. (USA Only)
and I didn't have a clue why I wanted it, but eventually I was worn down by the pretty pictures. When it arrived, we started making as many different things as possible and learning our lessons along the way. Use a silicone mat for strawberries. Small sticky stuff leaves a residue on the metal shelves that is harder to clean than the mat. My first try at a fruit leather (roll up) was not pretty but it was delicious. It was more fun than most stuff in the kitchen because it's so easy. Not a lot of prep - just slice. It's very very quiet, shuts off automatically, and you don't have to stand over it. Bananas, beef jerky, mango, limes, apples, One batch did get a mold right away so I put the little silicone packets in each jar to keep the chips dry...frig or freezer is best if not eaten right away. Love it. I recommend it.
Sahara Folding Dehydrator
I’ve only used the dehydrator twice, so I can’t speak to its longevity. However, I am very happy with it so far. I got it primarily because vegetables are inevitably packaged in quantities that I can’t use, but I don’t want to waste.
1. It’s very easy to set up and take down. The racks all fit in their nice case. I live in a small house, so it was important to me that it didn’t take up space when not in use.
2. The wire racks and silicon mats are easy to clean.
3. I’ve dehydrated carrots, parsnips, and mushrooms. First thing I learned: drying times give a range. Here in Memphis, where it is very humid, I need to use the longest time. This works just fine. I put the dehydrator on my washing machine, the vegetables dry overnight.
4. The dried vegetables are delicious. And it gives me the opportunity to preserve vegetables from a farmers’ market — types of veg I can’t get commercially.
5. I found a website called The Backpacking Chef which has great info on drying vegetables and then cooking with them.
Not only is the Sahara dehydrator efficient and large capacity, it is a really slick design. Every time I use it I am impressed all over again. It's perfect for my situation (tiny, poorly designed kitchen) because it easily folds down for storage. I got the carrying case for it and for the shelves as well and everything fits together, so I don't have to go hunting for where I might have put parts of it. It is also 'stupid simple' to unfold and operate. Kudos to the designers of this excellent product! Their customer service is awesome too; they took care of my mistake in ordering as well as gave me the sale price that happened the day after I bought my unit. I am recommending this dehydrator to everyone!