Summer means a lot of things to a lot of people. For some it means opportunities for outdoor sports, for others it means cookouts and overall fun with family and friends. Undoubtedly one of the greatest pleasures of summertime is the opportunity to enjoy cool treats like iced coffee, popsicles and ice cream. These frozen dog treats recipes will allow you to share delicious summer treats with your furry friend.
Our canine family members are really no different from us in that they enjoy a refreshing indulgence on a hot day. For them, getting some cool refreshment in the heat is doubly important considering they walk around in a fur coat all day long! And of course, who doesn’t like to spoil their pooch in this way?
Because of their unique digestive system, dogs are not able to process the lactose in traditional ice cream like their humans can.
So dog owners have to find easily digestible alternatives to commercial ice cream. There are already dog-specific ice cream products on the market. They are made with all-natural ingredients, and dogs absolutely love them. The only drawback to these products is that they can be expensive for budget-conscious dog owners.
Thankfully, the internet comes to the rescue with a plethora of frozen dog treat recipes not only for sweet treats (similar to the aforementioned dog ice cream), but savory treats as well. The ingredient lists for these recipes are relatively simple and chances are you already have these items in your refrigerator and/or pantry. Many of the recipes take minutes to prepare and only a couple hours to freeze.
Best Frozen Dog Treats Recipes for Hot Summer Days
Before you begin
Use yogurt-based frozen dog treats recipes in moderation.
Yogurt is still a dairy product. Granted, it doesn’t contain as much lactose as milk or cream, but it still contains lactose which can cause diarrhea in some dogs. Freeze yogurt-based recipes in smaller portions such as in an ice cube tray or Dixie cup. This should make it easier to ensure that your dog doesn’t overindulge too much.
When giving your dog a new frozen treat for the first time, keep an eye on him to see how he reacts to it.
He will certainly enjoy it initially, but his stomach may not. This is another reason why portion size is so important. Too much ice on a dog’s stomach at one time can cause digestive distress in some dogs. Other dogs may not tolerate certain ingredients. So it’s important to be aware of how your dog’s stomach reacts to what you’re feeding him.
When choosing a recipe, take careful note of the ingredients in the recipe.
Items such as grapes, raisins, onions or mushrooms can be toxic for your dog and should be avoided. However, fruits such as bananas, strawberries and blueberries, and vegetables such as carrots and peas are totally safe.
Frozen treats can be messy!
If you’re outside, it shouldn’t really make much difference. But if you’re inside, consider serving the treat in your dog’s bowl. Moderation is key not only for dairy items, but for any treats. Canine obesity or diabetes is just as dangerous for your dog as the toxic food items mentioned above.
Sweet frozen dog treats recipes
There are a lot of ideas out there for frozen sweet treats for your dog. If you don’t want to get involved in a full-fledged recipe, you can portion out baby food desserts or apple sauce and freeze those for your dog. Just make sure you opt for the low-sugar apple sauce or baby food.
Other easy-to-prep, natural sweet treats include straight frozen fruit such as strawberries, blueberries or cherries. This option is as easy as picking up a bag of frozen fruit from the supermarket or simply purchasing fresh fruit, cleaning and freezing. Banana slices freeze really well too, and are a convenient frozen treat for both pups and their people.
For the more discerning canine frozen treat connoisseur, dip the fruit in yogurt and freeze. Yogurt-dipped frozen strawberries are easy to make, super yummy and have the appearance of a “fancier” dessert. For an added delicious bonus, mix in a little honey. These yogurt-dipped morsels of goodness can be enjoyed by both pooches and people.
The most common is the traditional yogurt, peanut butter and banana recipe found here on Food.com.
There are variations on this recipe using honey, freezing mashed banana mixed with peanut butter, or mixing yogurt alone with the peanut butter and freezing. Your dog will thank you for any of these delicious options.
Now, if you’re REALLY ready to tackle an involved recipe, one of the most creative frozen sweet treats out there are these PB&J Pops found on the Doggy Dessert Chef site. This recipe requires longer preparation and patience, but the end result is both lovely to look at and, most importantly, delicious!
Savory frozen dog treats recipes
For the pups watching their waistline or for doggy owners who don’t want to futz around with sweet stuff, there are savory frozen dog treats recipes options out there. The recipe can be as easy as mixing some chunks of chicken with chicken broth and freezing in small portions such as with these Chicken Pops.
Freezing straight chunks of meat – especially organ meat – is a yummy option too. In fact, if you have any leftover cooked hamburgers from your last cookout, put together these Cheeseburger Pops for your dog.
Freezing baby food is a good option here too, as long as you purchase baby food that does not contain onion or garlic powder (onions and garlic are toxic to dogs). Lots of dogs love carrots, sweet potato, and peas. Simply freeze the baby food in small portions, just as you did with the baby food dessert.
When choosing a frozen sweet or savory treat for your dog, the bottom line is you know your dog best and know what he will like. Get creative and make your own recipes based on your pooch’s personal tastes. Work with different food combinations and see how well they freeze. Any treat that you make will certainly be enjoyed by your fur baby – especially when it’s made with love.