Now that the cold days are coming to a close, you can expect things to start heating up as we're going through spring and into the hot days of summer. You’ll probably be spending a lot of time with your dog at the beach, the lake, and anywhere else that helps you stay cool while you’re under the sun.
Keeping your dog cool on the hot days is not only about comfort but also about your dog's health. Anything you can do to cool off your pooch will be greatly appreciated by him, and what better way to do it than with some treats? Try some of these frozen dog ice cream recipes and pack them in the cooler when you head out on the road to enjoy your summer vacation.
Keep in mind that the measurements for these recipes are usually designed for organic fruits and veggies. It's fine to use non-organic items in your recipe, just remember that the organic variety is usually smaller. For example, if your using a banana made with GMO, it's going to be larger. So you should only use one unless you want a larger portion.
RECIPE VIDEO: How to Make Dog Ice Cream
Peanut Butter Banana Frozen Chews
Every canine loves peanut butter, but when you add bananas, flaxseed, and yogurt to the mix it becomes a potassium rich, chewy treat!
You will need:
- 2 organic bananas
- 1 teaspoon flaxseed
- 5 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter
- 36 ounces probiotic yogurt
- An ice cube tray
Cut bananas in half, and place them in the blender with your flax, peanut butter, and yogurt. Briefly pulse the mixture until it has somewhat of a smoothie texture with chunkier parts in it. Pour the contents of your blender into the ice cube tray evenly, if you want to be creative with the shapes you can also purchase trays that are designed with cute shapes.
Cover the tray with cling wrap and leave it in your freezer for 12 to 24 hours. Thaw them for about 15 to 20 minutes before serving them up, this way they’ll be easy to chew and your pup won’t hurt their teeth!
Tip: Just to be clear, you can forego the yogurt if your dog is lactose intolerant! If you do, cut down to half a teaspoon of flaxseed. The purpose of flax is to introduce more Omega fatty acids to their diet, and to help the cubes keep somewhat of a solid hold. They won’t melt down too quickly, and your dog should have a great time gnawing on it if they don’t swallow it first!
Bone Broth Minis
While you’re firing up the BBQ, why not give your dog a juicy steak cube of their own? If you plan to do any overnight cooking, save the bones and make your own broth! Bone broth is a great source of glucosamine chondroitin for your pet, and it might help them feel a little better if they’ve been struggling with hip and joint problems.
You Will Need:
- Zukes mini’s
- 1 to 2 cups of bone broth
There isn’t really any blending involved in this one, thankfully! Boil the bones for an hour or two until the water becomes a milky color. While your broth is cooling, line your ice cube trays with yummy training treats like Zukes minis in the salmon or chicken flavor. If you’ve got any leftover scraps from your brisket or slow-cooked meat, you can use these items as well!
Just steer clear of milk bones or soft, flour based treats that become wet and soggy easily. It won’t be very good by the time it's ready to be served.
Once the broth has cooled, strain into a bowl and make sure that none end up in the ice cube tray you’ll be using in a moment. While it's normal to associate dogs and bones, they can actually do serious damage to your pet’s insides. So just be sure you’ve completely eliminated any small or sharp pieces.
Tropical Watermelon Cubes
Who doesn’t love watermelon in the summertime? Its cool, refreshing, and has a mild flavor that has just the right amount of sweetness. No matter who happens to be eating it, this yummy melon is great way to stay hydrated since it's made up of 92% water! Since it has far less sugar than other fruits and melons at only 2%, it's also safer to eat as long as you remove the seeds beforehand.
You will need:
- Half a watermelon
- 3 tablespoons honey
- ½ to ¾ cup of coconut water
Slice up your watermelon to the appropriate size, then remove the skin and pluck out the seeds. Afterward, pour it into a pitcher with the coconut water and honey and use a small spoon or whisk to lightly stir it. Put it in your freezer to cool, and give your dog a couple at breakfast or dinner.
If you want, you can make a separate batch for yourself with extra coconut and honey, just be sure to create an obvious marker so you can tell the difference! Once they’re completely frozen, you’ll have a tasty watermelon ice cream treat for your pup, and something to add a little extra pop to your lemonade.
For those who don’t particularly like watermelon, you can substitute it for blueberries and strawberries, which your pup can safely consume.
Oatmeal Pumpkin Balls
Some dogs struggle with dry skin and coat, and oatmeal is natural soother for this problem! Pumpkin also helps to deliver Omega fatty acids to the hair follicles, not to mention it tastes amazing.
You will need:
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup oatmeal
- ½ tsp cinnamon
Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Then, line a baking sheet with wax paper and roll the mixture into ping pong size balls. If you own a smaller breed, adjust the size accordingly. Freeze them for 4 to 6 hours and place in tupperware for storage afterward.
Give these pumpkin balls to your dog every other day as a special treat, feeding it to them all the time might upset their stomach because of the cinnamon. If you need to, feel free to cut back on the cinnamon or replace it with a canine-safe spice that your dog likes a little more. Just keep in mind that less is more!