On Thanksgiving you can give thanks to your beloved furry friends by making Nutrient Rich Pumpkin Oatmeal Dog Biscuits.
This fall we were fortunate to find our furry-child Squiggles through Angels Among Us, a wonderful Atlanta rescue organization. The sweet and dedicated foster family who nursed her back to health instructed us to give Squiggles Omega-3 supplements and vitamin E to help maintain her strikingly soft and shiny coat. Once Squiggles joined our family, I decided an even healthier version of my homemade dog biscuits would be a good way to give her the same benefit the supplements did. For inspiration, I reread an adorable and helpful cookbook from my collection called The Good Food Cookbook for Dogs by Donna Twichell Roberts. I also researched online what the most beneficial dog treat ingredients are. I ultimately just changed out a few ingredients in my decades-old dog biscuit formula to create more nutrient rich treats.
To be included in the recipe, each ingredient has to have a nutritional pedigree:
- The pumpkin puree lends moisture to the dough and a cute seasonal touch, but it’s not just added for show. Pumpkin is rich in vitamin A, fiber and actually helps with doggie digestion. Pumpkin flavor is also adored by dogs. (For my homemade pumpkin puree recipe click here.)
- As a whole grain soluble fiber, oatmeal is a soothing digestive aid. Oatmeal’s anti-oxidant qualities boost immunity. Oatmeal is also a source of B vitamins, iron and plant protein.
- Flax seed bran is dog treat super food! It rivals fish oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids to help maintain moisturized skin and a lustrous coat. Flax seed bran is a good source of fiber and can help with digestion. Flax also has an anti-inflammatory to help middle aged dogs with arthritis.
- Wheat germ is rich in Vitamin B complex, fatty acids, and vitamin E which boost the immune system, maintain a healthy coat and moisturized skin, aid in digestion, and act as an anti-inflammatory.
- Dogs love the nutty and slightly cheesy taste of nutritional yeast which is packed with B vitamins to maintain healthy skin, coat, and carbohydrate metabolism. Note that nutritional yeast is not brewer’s yeast which has a bitter taste and is a byproduct of beer brewing.
- Eggs offer digestible animal protein and healthy fat for your pup as well as fatty acids for a healthy skin and coat.
- Vitamin E oil supports healthy skin, coat and immune system. As a bonus, Vitamin E oil act as a natural preservative to extend the shelf life of homemade dog treats.
Once you have all the ingredients on hand, these wholesome biscuits are pretty easy and cost effective to make whenever you need to make more for your pooch….which may be sooner than you think if you don’t watch out. I thought a cute picture of Squiggles eyeing biscuits after I took them out of the oven this morning was perfect proof of their wholesome goodness.
I then brought a handful of biscuits outside for some blog photos. Squiggles took the opportunity to pull two baking sheet on the floor and eat every single biscuit off them! I was outside so of course I didn’t hear the racket. Thank you Squiggles for showing your puppy love for these homemade doggie snacks.
Nutrient Rich Pumpkin Oatmeal Dog Biscuits
2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup oatmeal
½ cup flax seed bran
½ cup wheat germ
½ cup nutritional yeast
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
15 drops vitamin E
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In large bowl mix whole wheat flour, oatmeal, flax seed bran, wheat germ, and nutritional yeast.
- Add pumpkin puree, egg and vitamin E. With hands or wooden spoon mix until a stiff dough is formed. If dough is too crumbly to make into a ball, add more water. If dough is sticky, add flour until it is no longer tacky.
- Place ball of dough on lightly floured plastic wrap or wax paper, sprinkle flour on top of dough and cover with another piece of plastic wrap or wax paper.
- Roll dough to 1/3 inch thick and cut with seasonal cookie cutters.
- Place biscuits on parchment paper or Silpat lined baking sheets.
- Bake for 30 minutes then turn oven off. Leave dog biscuits in oven for five hours or overnight. This is the secret for creating hard and crunchy biscuits to promote healthy canine teeth.