The Ultimate Guide To Homemade Dog Treats

Close up of bone and star shaped dog treats.

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Store-bought dog treats can be expensive, and it’s hard to know exactly what’s in them.

If you’re looking for a way to save some money and give your dog a treat that you know is healthy and delicious, why not try making your own homemade dog treats?

In this blog post, we’ll give you some tips on which ingredients to use (and which to avoid) when making homemade dog treats for your four-legged friend.

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The Benefits of Homemade Dog Treats

Dog treats in a pink bone shaped mold.

There are many benefits to making your own dog treats at home. Not only can you save money, but you can also control the ingredients that go into your dog’s food.

Homemade treats are more affordable

One of the biggest benefits of making homemade dog treats is that they are more affordable than store-bought treats.

When you make your own treats, you can choose to use cheaper ingredients or even leftovers from your own kitchen.

This can help you save a lot of money in the long run.

Select quality ingredients

When you make your own dog treats, you can choose which ingredients to use. This allows you to choose healthy ingredients that work for your dog.

This is especially important if you have a dog with allergies. It is much easier to choose dog treats that work with your dog’s allergies and needs when you make them yourself.

You can also avoid using fillers and artificial ingredients that may not be good for your dog’s health, like added sugars.

Note: Always check with your pet’s veterinarian before introducing new foods to your dog’s diet. This is especially important if your dogs have sensitive stomachs.

Choose flavors to suit your dog’s preferences

A German Shepherd begging in the kitchen.

When you make your own treats, you can also choose flavors that your dog will love.

For example, if your dog loves peanut butter, you can make a batch of peanut butter dog treats.

Or, if your pup isn’t a fan of peanut butter, you can try using different ingredients to find a flavor that he or she will enjoy.

Plus, there’s nothing better than seeing the look of joy on your dog’s face when they take a bite out of a delicious treat that you made just for them!

The ingredients you need to make healthy dog treats

Now that we’ve gone over some of the benefits of making your own dog treats, let’s talk about which ingredients you’ll need.

Ingredients to use in homemade dog treats

Some of the most common ingredients in dog treats are:

  • oats – old-fashioned or quick oats
  • whole wheat flour
  • peanut butter – make sure to check the label to ensure that it does not contain xylitol
  • eggs
  • pumpkin puree – canned or homemade
  • applesauce – unsweetened
  • plain Greek yogurt
  • banana
  • berries – strawberries, blueberries, etc.

Ingredients to avoid when making homemade dog treats

There are also some ingredients that you’ll want to avoid when making homemade dog treats, like:

  • xylitol – this is toxic to dogs
  • artificial sweeteners
  • onions
  • garlic
  • chocolate
  • coffee
  • macadamia nuts
  • raisins
  • grapes
  • any other food that is known to be toxic to dogs that didn’t make this list

I also like to avoid any added sugars like white sugar, brown sugar, and even honey. Too much sugar can lead to health problems in dogs, just like it can in humans.

Tips for making homemade dog treats

Now that we’ve gone over which ingredients to use (and which to avoid), let’s talk about some tips for making your own homemade dog treats.

Safety tips in the kitchen with dogs

Poodle terrier and German Shepherd begging in the kitchen.

The most important thing to remember when making dog treats is to keep your dog safe.

My dogs like to lay where they can see me cooking, especially if they think I’m making them a new treat. 🤣

If they start getting too close to my feet where they are a tripping hazard, a common issue with my dogs, I make them leave the kitchen.

A poodle terrier laying down pouting.

The biggest safety issue with dogs in the kitchen is them getting burned. Remember they are like toddlers, they don’t know a hot oven is dangerous.

Same with moving anything from the stove. Keep them out of the way when you are opening the oven or moving hot pots.

Measuring dog treat ingredients

Use measuring cups to measure out the ingredients when making baked dog treats.

If you are making frozen dog treats, the measurements are more of a guideline than a requirement.

I often fudge the measurements in the frozen dog treats I make for my dogs. I only measure when I’m making a new recipe or one to share on this blog.

When I make any other type of dog treat, I make sure to measure exactly as it can affect baking or cooking time.

Making small treats

Making smaller dog treats is easier than you think. If you have a small mold or cookie cutter, use that.

If not, you can score large treats into smaller pieces with a table knife before baking them. This makes them easier to break into smaller pieces after they have been baked.

Another way to make smaller homemade dog treats is to bake them longer at a lower temperature. This will help prevent them from burning while still drying them

Recommended products for making homemade dog treats

Some recommended products for making your own dog treats are:

  • a mixing bowl
  • a rubber spatula
  • mixing spoons
  • a baking sheet
  • parchment paper
  • a wire cooling rack
  • a food processor – this is optional but can make things go quicker
  • silicone molds
  • fun cookie cutters

Many of these items are things you already have. For the dog treats I’ve made, the only thing I had to buy was the silicone molds to make frozen dog treats.

And I only bought them because they are cute. Ice cube trays work just fine. Dogs don’t care what their treats look like, they just want to eat them.

Recipes for homemade dog treats

Here are a few of my dogs’ favorite homemade dog treat recipes:

Ice cream for dogs

Ice cube shaped icecream for dogs.

Dog ice cream is an easy dog treat recipe. It only has 3 ingredients and doesn’t require any baking.

No-bake peanut butter pumpkin dog treats

Closeup of peanut butter and pumpkin no bake dog treats.

These no-bake dog treats only have 4 ingredients and can be made quickly. They can even be given to your dog as soon as you finish rolling them.

Oatmeal applesauce dog treats

Close up of oatmeal applesauce dog treats.

These oatmeal applesauce dog treats are a great treat for fall or any time of the year.

How to store homemade dog treats

Homemade dog treats should be stored in an airtight container. Many baked treats will last a few days on the counter or for about a week in the fridge. For longer storage, you can freeze them.

I prefer to keep most of the homemade dog treats I make in a freezer bag in the freezer. I can then take a few days’ worth of treats out of the freezer to keep in the fridge to give to Luna and Morgan.

Check out my post, how to store homemade dog treats, for more storage tips.

Homemade dog treats are a fun way to show your pup some love, and they’re also a great way to spoil them. Not only are you in complete control of the ingredients that go into these treats, but you can also customize them to fit your dog’s taste preferences.

Plus, making your own dog treats is a lot cheaper than buying them from the store. So what are you waiting for? Start whipping up some delicious homemade dog treats for your furry friend today!

Related posts

How To Make The Best Applesauce For Dogs

The Benefits of Pumpkin for Dogs

Can Dogs Eat Ice Cream?

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1 thought on “The Ultimate Guide To Homemade Dog Treats”

  1. Thank you very much – very informative and great advice! I am sure our Golden Retriever will be very grateful for homemade treats 😀

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