Happy holidays! Like you, I think the holidays really snuck up on us this year and I’m running just a little behind. Christmas cards will have to be New Year’s cards. Intricately wrapped gifts are going to be presents plopped into gift bags with tissue paper. C’est la vie; ce sont les vacances!
But increasingly, I enjoy the holidays because of the people I get to catch up with. I’m trading in a little of the pomp and dressing up for Christmas for some simpler pleasures. Like getting to have a longer conversation with someone who I don’t get to see as often as I would like.
Keeping up the tradition of baking treats for dogs
But shorter and more harried schedules don’t mean we leave the dogs out. I just have to be a little smarter this year in the dog treats I choose to make. I love baking for dogs — they’re so appreciative! It’s definitely a tradition I want to continue but if I could be a little more efficient about it, that would be great.
So this year, in baking for friends and neighbors’ dogs, I decided to go with one standard (peanut-butter and pumpkin), one new one (pumpkin and cranberry) and one super-simple (sweet potato) dog-treat recipe.
Here’s a hint for the pumpkin/peanut butter cookies: follow other reviewers’ comments and double the amount of pumpkin . It makes the dough more pliable and if you feel it is too moist, you can always add more flour to the dough. Also flour heavily your workspace to make cutting the dough easier.
The dried sweet potatoes are something I should have tried a long time ago. It’s a very easy recipe and the house now has a great smell in it: there’s a hint of sweetness in the air, a little like a very expensive perfume that you don’t want to overdo.
I’m sorry that I’m just getting these recipes to you now and I realize that you may not have time to crank them out before Christmas day. But that’s just one more reason to love baking for dogs. You can make them the treats on Dec. 26 and they will still love them (and you).
Happy, happy holidays!!
Christmas is only days away but surely, you have done the shopping, wrapping and delivering? Well, let’s pretend that you have. It’s going to be relatively chilly in Phoenix the next couple days — why not hunker down and bake some cookie treats for your best friend, the dog?
I love baking for the dog and her pals. They are a non-judgmental, hungry, even greedy group of gourmets who like everything that gets put in front of them, foodwise.
Dog cookies galore
In the morning, I walk into the kitchen, where there are tubs of dog cookies and I’m not tempted by any of these ‘treats”. I give these cookies away at cookie exchanges and everyone is happy to walk away with a box of goodies that won’t affect their waistline. I also give away the cookies to neighbors and colleagues and it’s a great way to start up a conversation. Something along the lines of “You have dogs? I have dogs. Now, can you get me that report before I expire from old age? Happy holidays!”
But the biggest thing of all: baking for the dog gets me into the holiday spirit of giving. Not the type of giving that happens because you feel compelled to go out and buy a gift but the better kind of giving: the simple act of doing something out of love in your heart and knowing that it will bring a smile to another person (or creature). The joy that comes from that really lightens my heart, especially in these darker times.
And without further woo-woo ado, here are this year’s dog cookie recipes. I made them all and I cheerfully comment on all of them:
- Alexander’s Peanut Butter Dog Biscuit Treats: the first I ever baked and I still love them. This year, I used small heart-shaped cookie cutters on these and they turned out very sweet!
- Calvin’s Christmas Cookies: Very festive — somehow it always reminds me of the Flinstones. Just absolutely push down those cranberries and pumpkin seeds into the dough or they will plop out once baking is done.
- Homemade Dog Treats — I thought the peanut-butter/bacon glaze for the treats would be the bomb but then I had doubts about frying that much bacon to get the bacon fat for the glaze. And I thought about how bacon fat isn’t good for the dog, so I opted for the coconut oil option. Freeze the treats to get the glaze to really stick. Next year, I think I am just going to smear some peanut butter on the cookie and forgo the glaze.
And that’s the joy of making cookies for dogs!
Happy holidays everyone!
One of our favorite holiday traditions is baking – baking for the dogs, of course.
Baking for dogs is one of the most stressless things you will do during the holiday because dogs, well, they are just so good natured, and non-disciminating when it comes to food.
Why bake treats for dogs?
So many advantages to baking for dogs: No being-in-the-kitchen extra weight gain for you – unless you can’t keep your hands off the peanut butter and bacon num-nums. Also, it’s nice to know exactly what is going into your dog’s food. And if you have leftover ingredients, you could bake extra goodie for some shelter dogs.
Dog-treat holiday recipes
Here’s a list of holiday dog treats to get you baking in the kitchen:
- Snacks to share with the humans: This dog-biscuit recipe that features cornmeal and a nice, grainy texture that humans in the house like as well.
- For the vegetarian dogs: Check out this vet approved and dog tested recipe. that has only five simple ingredients.
Bone apetit everyone!
This Fall, remember your dog loves pumpkin, too.
We’ve turned off the AC and opened the doors and windows, so that means its Fall in Phoenix. Hurray! The season only lasts for a few days here – so enjoy every minute of it.
Fall in Phoenix doesn’t involve any changing leaves. In fact, the only color we see a lot of is orange as in pumpkin as in pumpkin that everyone from coffee shops to grocery stores to soap makers are pitching this time of the year.
Your dog can get in on the pumpkin-mania, too.
Pumpkin and your dog’s health
Raw pumpkin is not great for dogs – so keep Fido away from the Jack-o-laterns!
But cooked, canned, unsweetened pumpkin and pumpkin seeds can help dogs with everything from weight loss to improved digestion. Ask your veterinarian first about any plans to make pumpkin a regular addition to your dog’s diet.
- Regular Digestion: If your dog’s stools are either too loose or too hard, try adding one or two tablespoons of plain pumpkin.
- Weight Loss: Mix some soaked dry kibble with a tablespoon of canned pumpkin. Pumpkin’s extra fiber boost lets your dog’s tummy think it is full faster.
- Skin and Coat: Pumpkin seeds can help keep your dog’s skin and fur from drying out – especially nice with the area’s lower humidity.
Pumpkin treats for your dog
Here are three nifty ways to use this fall favorite as a treat for the dog:
- Recipes: (No-bake peanut butter pumpkin rolls sounds pretty delish)
- Pumpkin seeds: Spread raw, cleaned seeds evenly onto a baking sheet, lightly coat with cooking oil, roast in a 375-degree oven for five to 10 minutes, and cool. One or two seeds makes a great dog treat.
- Frozen treats: The typical can of well, canned, pumpkin, is 15 ounces, which means you will have left over pumpkin at the end of the week. Instead of tossing the leftovers, freeze them in ice cube tray. Crush up the ice cube before serving or defrost it to serve over kibble.
Hope you and your pumpkin (s) have a great Fall!