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A Cavan Monaghan, ON Veterinarian Discusses The Doggy Biscuit

February 15, 2024

Our four-legged pals are all very unique individuals, and they all have their own personalities and preferences. One thing they all agree on? Their love of treats! Treats are not only a good way to get your dog’s cute tail going, they are also very useful for bonding and training. Just as dogs enjoy treats and companionship, other pets have their own social needs too. For instance, if you’re a bird owner, you might be interested in our article Do Budgies Need a Buddy? The Truth About Social Birds. But for now, let’s focus on our canine friends. A local Cavan Monaghan, ON vet offers some advice on giving your pooch his treats in this article.

Are Biscuits Okay For My Dog?

Yes! Treats help with training, bonding, and they also just brighten up your pup’s day. They can help provide a sense of routine, which is also beneficial. Our furry pals feel most secure when they’re on a set schedule. 

The main thing here is not to go overboard. That can also be the hard part. Man’s Best Friend is not only adorable, he’s also very, very good at begging. In general, treats should only make up about five to ten percent of your pup’s daily intake. Ask your Cavan Monaghan, ON veterinarian for specific advice.

Can I Make homemade Dog Treats For My Pet?

Sure! There are many recipes out there. You’ll need to start with some sort of base. 

Here are some things you can use:

  • Liver Powder 
  • Ripe Bananas 
  • Natural Peanut Butter (Make Sure It Doesn’t Contain Xylitol) 
  • Fat-Free Yogurt Or 
  • Pureed Pumpkin
  • Egg 
  • Whole-Wheat Flour 
  • Wheat Germ Oil 
  • Sodium-Free Broth
  • Chopped Or Minced Meat 
  • Sodium-Free Broth 

To customize your dog’s snacks, you can add things like bacon bits, shredded cheese, bits of kibble, or safe fruits and veggies, such as peas, green beans, or spinach. 

You can even get an appliance just for Fido’s treats! These are like typical waffle makers or panini presses, but have a bone-shaped pocket to pour the batter into. These are good gifts for Fido’s buddies. 

What Are Some Easy Dog Biscuit Recipes? 

Well, you’ll have to find out what your pet’s favorite is, but we can certainly suggest some.

Here are a few ‘pawesome’ recipes:

Tail Waggers For this basic biscuit, you’ll combine eggs, whole-wheat flour, and olive oil or wheat germ oil. You can customize your dog’s cookies by using some of the ingredients listed above, such as bacon bits or shredded meat. Divide the batter into small portions, and cook at 350 for a half hour. 

Liver Woof Bits Combine some whole-wheat flour, eggs, and beef liver. Use a food processor to combine the ingredients into a batter, then cook them at 350 for a half hour.

Chicken Yums Combine some plain canned chicken with shredded cheese, bacon bits, whole-wheat flour, and sodium-free chicken broth. Divide into small servings, and cook at 350 F for 15 mins.

Basic Pumpkin Bites Pureed pumpkin combined with some natural peanut butter forms the basis for this one.  Add two large eggs and some whole-wheat flour. Cook at 400F for about a quarter hour.

Turkey Woofers Mixplain, cooked boneless turkey meat with cheese and egg. You can also incorporate baby food and/or safe fruits and veggies, such as peas, carrots, sweet potatoes. Usse a food processor to mix, then divide into small portions. Cook at 375 for a half hour.

Yogurt/PB Bites Mix some natural peanut butter with fat-free yogurt and mashed bananas, pureed pumpkin or sweet potato. Then, divide the batter into small bits. Cook at 350 for 25-a half hour. Instant tail wags!

Don’t forget to make your dog do a trick for his treat! 

Who Invented Dog Biscuits?

We’ve been friends with dogs for thousands of years. In fact, some studies indicate that they have been our furry best friends for as much as 30,000 years. It’s probably safe to assume that we’ve been giving our four-legged friends table scraps for quite a long time.

One of the earliest mentions—if not the earliest mention—of Fido’s biscuits dates back to the Roman Empire. At that time, it wasn’t uncommon for our canine buddies to be given scraps of bread. In fact, a Roman poet named Marcus Terentius Varro mentioned giving dogs meat, bones, and barley that had been soaked in milk in his manual ‘Farm topics.’

Fast forward several hundred years, to 14th century France, and we’ll find another book about dogs’ menu. This one was written by Gaston III, the eleventh Count of Foix Count. He apparently fed his greyhounds bran bread and hunted meat.

The modern doggy biscuit was invented back in the 1800’s, when a man named James Spratt created the first commercially-prepared ones. These were a combination of wheat meal, beetroot, beef blood, and veggies. Needless to say, the recipe was a huge hit with our canine companions. Other companies soon followed suit. Then, in 1907, a chemist named Carleton Ellis reshaped Fido’s cookies, giving them that iconic bone shape and therefore creating the milk bone, which dogs still enjoy today.

How Do I Choose Safe Treats?

We always suggest people read labels. It’s important to make sure that your four-legged pal’s treats contain only wholesome, nutritious ingredients. The first things listed should be meat, fish, or poultry. These should also appear more than any other ingredients.

Size is very important. Take care to only offer things that are the right size for your dog. your furry friend could choke or hurt his teeth on something made for a larger or smaller breed!

Monitoring recalls isn’t a bad idea, either. While fortunately these do not happen very often, sometimes a bad batch does slip through. You can stay on top of alerts and updates at the FDA site here or the AMVA site here. Another option is to set up google alerts for yourself.

What Are Unsafe Treats For Fido?

The main one we would mention here would be rawhide. While it’s very popular with our furry buddies, it can break off into sharp bits, which can then become a choking hazard. Rawhide can also cause serious internal issues if ingested, which may require emergency care. Err on the side of caution. 

Can I Give My Dog People Food?

People food shouldn’t replace dog food: Fido’s meals should be based on quality pet food. However, you can supplement or treat with people food. Man’s Best Buddy ate table scraps for most of history. Many things we eat are safe for him. Plain meat, fish, or poultry, without the skin, bones, or fat, is always a  good bet. Your dog can also have many fruits and veggies, such as apples, sweet potato, spinach, peas, carrots, and broccoli. However, not all foods are safe. Never offer your pet anything without researching it first. Your Cavan Monaghan, ON veterinarian can offer more detailed information.

What Foods Are Dangerous To Dogs?

The list of unsafe foods includes garlic, onions, scallions, or chives; pitted fruit; avocado; alcohol; chocolate; and anything with seeds or pips.  Grapes and raisins are highly toxic to dogs: some pups go into organ failure after eating just one. Other dangerous foods include meat on the bone, raw dough or yeast, and anything that contains xylitol (birch sugar), and/or a lot of salt, sugar, or fat. Ask your vet for more information.

Is your canine buddy due for an appointment? Regular check-ups are crucial for your pet’s health, including monitoring their diet and treat intake. Learn more about our Veterinary Wellness & Pet Vaccinations services to ensure your furry friend stays healthy and happy. Please feel free to contact us, your Cavan Monaghan, ON veterinary clinic, today! We are always happy to help!