We still love the basic Kong toy, as well as the variety of other toys made by Kong. But we have to admit, we also love many of Kongs competitors in the food-stuffable toy category. In fact, there are so many its hard to even have favorites anymore! But at a minimum, we think you should be aware of how many options are available to you and your dog today, so you can select the ones that are best suited to your own dogs needs and wants.
With high temperatures across the country, pupsicles are an easy and highly customizable treat that can entertain your dogs while keeping them cool and hydrated. Pupsicles don't take the place of making sure your dog is drinking fresh water, but they are a fun way to add more hydration to your dog's day. Here are a few easy popsicle recipes your dog is sure to enjoy.
Ice cream, of course, contains milk. And just like humans, some dogs (not all) are lactose-intolerant. If you feed milk to a lactose-intolerant dog, he may experience diarrhea, painful gas, or vomiting. Of course, ice cream is a treat, not a diet staple, so start by giving your dog no more than a spoonful, and wait for a day to see if he has any negative response to the frozen dessert. As long as he does not, he should be able to enjoy a prudent amount as an occasional treat.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began receiving reports in 2006 regarding dogs becoming ill – sometimes fatally ill – shortly after being fed dried chicken “jerky” treats. Most, but not all, of the treats mentioned in these reports were made or sourced in China.
Imagine not having to worry about treat recalls or ingredient sources, or, for that matter, whether the actual ingredients match what's on the product label. It's not a dream; in fact, it's well within anyone's abilities. It's easy, it costs less than commercial products, and as an added bonus, you get the peace of mind from knowing these treats won't be recalled. Heck, you have to go grocery shopping anyway, so it shouldn't be a problem to pick up the necessary ingredients while shopping for the other members of your family. Whether you shop at Safeway or Whole Foods, one thing is certain: the quality of the raw ingredients you’ll buy in human grocery stores is far higher than what is used in most commercial treats.
There are nearly as many types of dog treats on the market as treats for humans: sweet, salty, crunchy, chewy, meaty, fruity, fatty, savory,...
Making meals from scratch is the only way I know to have exactly what I want for my dogs no ingredients from places with spotty records for quality assurance, no multi-syllabic additives making a label longer than I like. After I covered the pet-food recall in 2007, I changed the way I eat and the way I feed my pets. For my dogs, that meant commercial products from companies I trusted, along with raw-food meals from regional sources of meat, grains, and vegetables. It wasn't a huge shift from raw to cooked when my Flat-Coated Retriever, McKenzie, started chemotherapy for soft-tissue sarcoma a few days after her seventh birthday. At the suggestion of her veterinary oncologist, I dropped the carbs, rebalanced the diet with the help of some expert advice, and started feeding McKenzie Meatloaf" to all three of my dogs."
Bravo!, maker of top-quality frozen raw diets, recently introduced a line of freeze-dried meat treats that meet all of our selection criteria. They come in four varieties: all-beef “hot dogs,” turkey, buffalo, and “Trail Mix,” which contains those three plus tiny cubes of freeze-dried cheese. We like the latter best, because the variety seems to hold our dogs’ attention longer. Bravo! uses only domestic sources of responsibly raised meats.
Surely there is no such person as a dog owner who never gives his or her dog a treat. We all like to see our dog's tail wag, and his face light up with attentive anticipation, right? But how do you know that the treats you give him are healthy? It's actually pretty simple. As with every food you buy (for yourself or your dog), it's all about the ingredients. If you do not already read the label of every food item you consider buying, get in the habit! Most of the information you need to know in order to determine the product's quality is legally required to appear on the label. Ingredients are listed on the label by weight; there is more of the first ingredient on the list present in the treat than the second ingredient, and so on. (One exception: If equal amounts - by weight - of different ingredients are present, the manufacturer can list those ingredients in any order; that is, as long as they are still in order relative to the other ingredients). The first few ingredients on the list are the most significant; since they comprise the majority of the content, they should be especially high in quality.
Experiment with a wide variety of foods to find out what treats your dog loves most. If higher-value treats don't work, remove your dog to a less distracting environment, gradually increasing distractions as he's ready to handle them.
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