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Liver Dog Treats Equals One Happy Dog

DoggieKitchen.com: If you want to see your dog happier than he’s ever been, bake him some liver dog treats. There is a characteristic aroma and taste dogs just can’t get enough of.

You can take advantage of this eager to please side of your dog and use liver as your dog training treats and training tool.

What to Consider When Using Liver:

Vitamin A – Even though liver has a whole host of beneficial nutrients and vitamins, one of which is vitamin A, too much can do damage. If you dog ingests a large amount of liver at one time, in severe cases it could lead to vitamin A toxicity.

What Will Your Dog do for Liver Treats?

liver dog treats

So, how much is too much? That depends on the size and weight of your dog. Typically organ meat should not be more than 5-10% of your dogs total diet. However, we are talking about treats. A treat is an occasional indulgence, so there should not be a need for concern.

  • Organic – You may want to consider purchasing organic liver. Since the liver functions in removing toxins from the body, an organic liver will have fewer toxins. You should also consider purchasing calf liver or organic calf liver. Since the calf is young, it will have a minimal amount of build-up compared to an adult. Whatever type of liver you purchase, it should be hormone, steroid and antibiotic free, and preferably pasture raised.
  • Stinky – OK, so this isn’t as important as nutrition. But you need to be warned that not everyone enjoys the smell of cooked liver. So, you may want to air out the kitchen during and after baking your liver dog biscuits to avoid the stinky fragrance.
  • Clean-Up – Some of the homemade liver dog treats require that you puree the liver in a food processor. Once liver is in a liquid state, it dries very quickly. It is then quite difficult to remove when it comes time to clean up. I recommend taking the time to immediately rinse any utensils used with liver. Once the treats are baking away in the oven, you can address the task of washing dishes (or in my case loading the dishwasher!).

If you are just getting into baking homemade dog treats, liver is a great place to start. Since almost all dogs love liver, you will have lots of positive reinforcement for your hard baking efforts. And with simple recipes, bake up a batch, and see what your dog will do for some liver dog cookies!

Roll Out the Fun with Dog Biscuit Recipes

These dog biscuit recipes make the quintessential or classic dog treat. Roll out the fun, when you roll and cut out these homemade dog treats.

When you make your own dog treats, part of the fun is collecting dog cookie cutters to use. That’s why we’ve compiled all of our roll and cut recipes into one easy to locate area.

But how do you choose from all of those adorable dog cookie cutters? Here is a list of helpful things to consider when choosing cutters for your dog biscuits:

  • Seasonal – This is probably the easiest cookie cutter to choose. If you are making dog treats for a special time of year, then you’re going to choose Flowers for Spring, Flip Flops for Summer, and so on.
  • Dog Treat Dough – One thing that you need to consider when choosing cutters is the thickness of your dough. If it contains rolled oats, carob chips, or another chunky ingredient, you want to use very simple shaped cutters like hearts or circles. If your dough is simple and has smooth ingredients, like the turkey wheat free dog treats, you can use shapes that have more detail since the detail will be evident after the biscuits are baked.
  • Final Destination – Where or whom are your dog biscuits going to? If you will be shipping your homemade dog biscuits you will want simple shapes to keep them in one piece while traveling. If they will be a gift, how will you package them?

All these things need to be considered before you choose a dog treat recipe, because it will effect your end result. We also have tips on using the cookie cutter once you’ve chosen the perfect theme.

  • Flour – Most dog treat doughs can be sticky. That’s why it’s a great idea to dip your cookie cutter in flour before cutting the dough. Having a lightly covered cookie cutter will help it to release from the dough and provide a crisp cut out.
  • Should You Wiggle? – When cutting the dog biscuit, resist the urge to wiggle the cookie cutter. It will make your cut out not as precise. Choose your spot and press firmly straight down.
  • Lifting the Cut Outs – Once you have cut out as many dog biscuits as you can, it’s time to transfer the cookies to the baking sheet. Start by pulling away the excess dough from around the cut outs. Place the unused dough back into your bowl to be rolled out. Gently lift the cookie away from the parchment paper or flour covered surface with a metal or thin spatula.
  • Cleaning the Cutters – You want to clean your dog cookie cutters as soon as your dog biscuits are in the oven. Using warm water and mild soap is usually all you’ll need. Once they are washed, place them on a clean baking sheet and pop them into the oven for a couple minutes. This will help them to dry completely and avoid rust. Once they are cooled, they can be stored.

Although baking homemade dog biscuits make the cutest treats imaginable, there can be a problem. That problem is rolling out, and working with sticky, thick dog biscuit dough.

Liver Dog Treats with Cheese

What’s not to love with these liver dog treats with cheese. The aromatic flavors of liver, that all dogs seem to go crazy over, and the creamy goodness of cheese combine to create greatness.

Liver is a fantastic addition to your homemade dog treat recipes. However, we recommend you review our tips on buying and using liver before you bake up a batch of these liver dog treats.

Tips: If you do not have oat flour you can make your own by grinding rolled oats in your food processor. You will need 1 1/4 cup of oats to make 1 cup of oat flour. Grind until it is the consistency of flour. If you don’t have brown rice flour, you can substitute a few different flours. You can use barley, potato, millet or spelt flour using the same measurements.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. raw beef liver (you can substitute chicken liver)
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 1 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 cup low fat cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder or granulated garlic (not garlic salt)
  • 1 egg

Additional flour for rolling

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F
  2. Puree liver in a food processor. It’s ok if there are a few very small pieces.
  3. Pour the liver into a bowl.
  4. Stir in the flours, cheese, garlic and egg until thoroughly combined.
  5. Roll the dough out to a 1/4" thickness.
  6. Cut with dog cookie cutters or a pizza cutter. OR, drop spoonfuls for dog cookies. You can flatten them with a glass bottom dipped in flour. Or you can leave them in a ball shape.
  7. Place on a ungreased baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden in color.
  9. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

Storing: These liver dog treats with cheese will last for 1 week in the refrigerator. They will be good for 6 months in the freezer.

Liver and Cottage Cheese Dog Treat Recipe

Liver dog treats are seldom turned down by dogs. They all seem to love them. So, this liver and cottage cheese recipe is sure to be a big hit.

If you’re an old pro at cooking liver, and just looking for another great liver dog treat recipe, you’ve found it.

Maybe you’re new to cooking liver and have questions or concerns about using it. Then you’ll want to review our tips on choosing liver before baking your homemade dog treats.

Are you using this liver and cottage cheese recipe for dog training treats? Then be sure to use very small dog bone cookie cutters. Or, you can roll them into little balls for quick consumption during training.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. beef liver
  • 2 large eggs (wash shells if you are going to include them)
  • 1 cup fat free cottage cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups wheat germ
  • 3 cups wheat flour

Additional flour for rolling

Instructions:

Tip: It is easier to cut liver (and other meats) while slightly frozen.

  1. Preheat oven to 300° F
  2. Rinse liver and cut into 1 inch pieces (see note above).
  3. In a 2 quart sauce pan bring liver and one cup of water to a boil over high heat.
  4. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until liver is no longer pink. Approximately 5 minutes.
  5. Reserve cooking liquid.
  6. In a blender or food processor puree the liver and eggs (if you are going to include the egg shells, now is the time to do so).
  7. Add reserved cooking liquid, as needed, to assist the puree process and keep the ingredients moving.
  8. Spoon liver mixture into a bowl.
  9. Stir in the cottage cheese, wheat germ, flour and any remaining cooking liquid.
  10. Knead dough until it no longer feels sticky.
  11. Roll out into 1/2" thickness and cut with dog cookie cutters.
  12. Place on a greased cookie sheet.
  13. Another option: Drop a tablespoon of dough onto a greased cookie sheet. Slightly flatted the ball with a fork to make a dog cookie.
  14. Bake for one hour.
  15. Cool completely on a wire rack before serving to your dog.

Once the liver dog treats are cooled, they should not leave a residue when touched. If they do, bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, or until completely hard and no residue remains.

These treats should last for one week in the refrigerator. If they are frozen, then they’ll last for around 8 months. You will want to use an airtight container when you store your homemade liver treats.

If your dog is motivated to please you for a food reward, these liver and cottage cheese dog treats are sure to be eaten quickly. See if you can take your dog to the next level in obedience or tricks with your homemade dog biscuits.

Fast and Easy Liver Training Treats

Ingredients:

Fresh Liver (preferably beef)

Salt

Water

Instructions:

  1. Add fresh liver to water which is at a full boil. You may add salt to this water if you wish. Allow to cook until liver is no longer pink. Usually about 5 minutes.

  2. Remove liver from the water and promptly rinse with cold water under the sink tap; all the while gently rubbing at the liver to remove any slime or white foamy stuff that may be on the liver.

  3. 3.  Pat the liver with paper towels until dry.

  4. Place liver on a cookie sheet and insert into a pre-heated 200 degree oven until it takes on a leathery appearance and feel. The liver should not crumble or break when picked up. This should take approximately 20 minutes.

  5. Once cooled, cut liver up into bite sized pieces.

Related:

Easter Candy Cautionary Warning for Pets

Free Homemade Dog Food Recipes

Gourmet Doggie Biscuits and Some Holiday Snacking Tips

Surprise, Surprise… the Best Food for Dogs Is Homemade Food

Common Foods That Are Harmful Or Even Fatal to Dogs

March 29, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pet Recipes, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Dangers of Genetically Modified Ingredients in Pet Food

Pet Food

Story at-a-glance
  • If you’re feeding your dog or cat a commercial pet food containing corn-based ingredients, chances are those ingredients are genetically modified. Over 60 percent of corn grown in the U.S. is genetically modified.
  • Studies of rats fed GM corn show evidence of severe kidney and liver disease, negative effects on the heart, spleen, and other organs, massive tumors, and premature death.
  • While the impact of GM foods on dogs and cats has not been scientifically studied, many scientists suspect these products have some common toxic effects and may cause disorders of the liver, pancreas and kidneys in humans and animals.
  • Dr. Michael W. Fox believes the high number of skin and food allergies, and other allergies associated with GI disorders in dogs and cats are caused or aggravated by novel proteins and other contaminants found in genetically modified crops.
  • Even conventionally grown corn is not a biologically appropriate food for dogs or cats. Both corn and soy products are linked to a wide variety of health problems in companion animals.

By Dr. Becker

For those of you still feeding your dog or cat a commercial pet food with corn-based ingredients – which includes most inexpensive pet foods on the market today – here’s a big heads-up and another reason to reconsider the diet you’re offering your four-legged companion.

Chances are the corn products in your pet’s food are genetically modified (GM). This means the seeds have been chemically altered to produce plants that can withstand repeated spraying with Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer.

Estimates in 2009 were that over 60 percent of corn grown in the U.S. is genetically modified, and according to more recent information from NaturalNews.com,1 Monsanto has disclosed that half the sweet corn grown on U.S. farms comes from genetically modified seed.

Genetically Modified Corn and Its Effect on Rats

Previous studies have shown that genetically modified corn causes significant kidney and liver disease in rats after only a 90-day feeding trial,2 and has a negative effect on other organs as well, including the heart and spleen.

Now a new lifetime study of rats fed a diet containing GM corn shows they not only died earlier than rats on a standard diet, they developed mammary tumors and severe kidney and liver damage as well.3

According to researchers, half the male rats and 70 percent of females died prematurely, compared with 30 percent of males and 20 percent of females in the control group.

Lead researcher Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen, believes his study involving the full lifespan of rats gives a more comprehensive and realistic view of the risks of GM corn than 90-day feeding trials. A rat at three months is still a young adult.

GM Foods and Your Pet

If you’re wondering how GM corn might affect your dog or cat, unfortunately, the specifics have yet to be studied. However, in an article published in 2009 in the journal Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition regarding GM foods, the authors, Greek scientists, assert:

"The results of most of the rather few studies conducted with GM foods indicate that they may cause hepatic, pancreatic, renal, and reproductive effects and may alter hematological, biochemical, and immunologic parameters the significance of which remains unknown. The above results indicate that many GM foods have some common toxic effects. Therefore, further studies should be conducted in order to elucidate the mechanism dominating this action. Small amounts of ingested DNA may not be broken down under digestive processes and there is a possibility that this DNA may either enter the bloodstream or be excreted, especially in individuals with abnormal digestion as a result of chronic gastrointestinal disease or with immunodeficiency."4

Dr. Michael W. Fox has also compiled an extensive list of the potential risks of genetically modified foods, including:

  • The toxic insecticidal agent Bacillus thuringiensis is present in most GM crops in the U.S. that wind up in animal feed and pet food.
  • Glufosinate and glyphosate, which are herbicides, are applied to millions of acres of genetically modified crops across the U.S. and other countries. These poisons are absorbed by the crops – which are engineered to be herbicide resistant – while decimating everything else growing in the area and much of the aquatic life in nearby bodies of water.

    These herbicides cause kidney damage in animals, endocrine disruption and birth defects in frogs, and are lethal to many amphibians. Glyphosate has also been linked to miscarriages, premature births, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, in humans.

  • Nutritionists and other health experts increasingly are connecting the rise in human allergies, including skin conditions and inflammatory GI disorders to broader consumption of GM foods and food additives – in particular, GM soy products containing novel proteins. Dr. Fox suspects the high number of skin and food allergies, and other allergies associated with GI disorders are caused or aggravated by these novel proteins and other contaminants in genetically modified crops.
  • Independent animal feeding safety studies show adverse or unexplained effects of GM foods, including inflammation and abnormal cell growth in the GI tract, as well as in the liver, kidney, testicles, heart, pancreas and brain.
  • GM crops have proven to be unstable and prone to unplanned mutations – which means we don’t really know whether the food being grown from these plants is safe or nutritious.

Dr. Fox’s advice to pet owners is to buy only food with USDA Organic certification. He also advises consumers to avoid all prepared foods, including cooking oils that contain corn and soy products, since these are the products most likely to originate from GM crops.

In addition to Dr. Fox’s advice, I recommend omitting grains entirely from your carnivorous pet’s diet. Corn and soy ingredients are not biologically appropriate ingredients in dog and cat food, even if they are conventionally grown. Both these ingredients are linked to a wide variety of health problems in companion animals, including allergies, skin disorders, oral disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and cystitis.

November 14, 2012 Posted by | Animal Related Education, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Now dogs Have a Food Truck of Their Own With Bow-Wow Chow

Austin’s food truck scene isn’t just for humans anymore. Bow-Wow Chow, a mobile food truck for dogs, officially opens for business on July 28 at Auditorium Shores, 920 W. Riverside Drive. The truck — which has been making trial runs around town since June — features baked treats for canines.

Folks in canine-loving Austin might not often think "This town needs something just for dogs." But that’s what went through Lara Enzor’s mind one day last fall when she was passing through one of the city’s many food trailer courts. She saw trucks offering tacos, Indian food and various culinary mashups for humans and nothing for our four-legged friends. That spark of a thought became Bow-Wow Chow, Enzor’s food truck that caters just to dogs, which Enzor says is a first for Austin’s mobile food scene.

"It’s kind of like an ice cream truck for dogs," says Enzor, who encourages owners to let their dogs come right up to the counter window for their treats, which come in minimal to no packaging to lessen the environmental impact. A single treat — all natural, preservative free and locally made in Austin — with a bottle of water is $1, three treats are $2 and the best-selling six-pack is $3. The Elvis special ($2) comes with one peanut butter treat, one banana treat and a water. Enzor also is offering a limited number of VIP leash tags for $10. Good through the end of the year, the tag can be used to get a treat when you don’t have any cash in your pockets.

"If the dog’s happy, the employee’s happy and everybody’s smiling," says Enzor, who already has a proven entrepreneurial record, having worked for several large pharmaceutical companies before opening her own business monitoring pharmaceutical trials.

Enzor, who grew up in Abilene and has a biology and chemistry background and degree, trusted her gut as she turned thought into action. In December, she found a former snow cone truck for sale in Florida on eBay and Craigslist, and she bought it sight unseen because she trusted the sound of the owner’s voice on the other end of the phone. Despite having 100,000 miles on it, the truck "is a pleasure to drive and purrs like a kitten," Enzor says.

She didn’t have to do much to the interior, which was already outfitted with sink, storage and even a freezer (she’s working with Groovy Dog to add ice cream to the menu). She sold most of the snow cone equipment — she kept the commercial hot dog machine, a hit at a recent party — and with the help of Full Moon Design, she had the exterior tricked out to reflect the new business. Her inspiration? Scooby-Doo’s Mystery Machine. Yes, she wants people to smile and laugh when they see the truck parked or driving down the road.

Two of the dogs on the truck’s cheery and colorful design were inspired by Enzor’s own 15-year-old fox terrier, Dottie, and Penny, a 3-ish miniature pinscher adopted from Austin Pets Alive. Rescue groups also are part of Enzor’s business plan, which is built on community and giving back. A portion of every sale goes to APA, and she plans to rotate the beneficiary group by month. Interested rescue groups can contact Enzor through her website (http://bow-wowchow.com), on which she also wants people to post photos or videos of their dogs at the truck.

So far, Enzor and her two employees have had the truck at Norwood Estate dog park on Saturday mornings and at dog meetups and other special events. "We’ve been so well-received," she says, "and we have some regular customers already."

Bow-Wow Chow had its official launch party at Auditorium Shores yesterday, on Saturday July 28th, after negotiations with the city, Enzor was granted a one-week permit to park at the popular dog-gathering spot.  Enzor plans to have the truck there from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day that week. Then she’ll see where the truck will go next.

"Wherever there’s a gathering of dogs, we would like to bring the party to them," Enzor says.

h/t to the Statesman

Related: 

Food Truck Caters to Austin Dogs


The local food truck scene isn't just for humans anymore. Bow-Wow Chow now caters to canine clientele.

For those that want to bake their own biscuits:

Gourmet Doggie Biscuits

For those of you who have always been curious as to how to make dog treats at home for your pet here is a basic recipe to get you started. With all the dog food & treat recalls that have caused severe conditions and even death; it is nice to know what is going into your pet. It is also a great gift for your pet friends!!

I N G R E D I E N T S

3 1/2 cup all-purpose (or unbleached) flour
2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup skim milk powder
1 tablespoon (or 1 package) dry yeast
3 1/2 cups lukewarm chicken or meat broth (about 2- 15oz cans)

1 egg beaten with about 2 tablespoons water (for egg wash)

I N S T R U C T I O N S

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Grease cookie sheets.

Mix together all dry ingredients.

Dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm chicken or meat broth. Let yeast broth mixture set 10 min. Then stir in flour mixture until a soft dough is formed. If the dough is too sticky you can add more flour.

Roll resulting dough out 1/4″ thick. Cut dog biscuit shapes from dough. Put scraps back in bowl and re-roll out until all dough is used.

Brush biscuits with egg wash.

Bake on greased cookie sheets at 300 degrees for 45 min.

Then turn off oven and leave in overnight to finish hardening.

Makes 60 medium-sized biscuits**

Storing Dog Treats
In general you should store dog treats the same way you would homemade people cookies. That being said, there are two main variables that determine storage time – the amount and type of fat in the recipe and your local weather conditions. If your recipe uses fats such as butter, or meat bits or juices then it will be more prone to rancidity than a recipe that uses some vegetable oil or shortening. Your treats may mold or spoil much faster in humid or very hot climates.

Refrigeration and Freezing – Refrigeration will prolong the life of more fragile dog treats. Make sure to store in a tightly sealed container or zip lock bag. You can also freeze most treats in zip lock freezer bags. Allow to thaw completely before use.

Below are a couple “Goodie” questions from the ASPCA Poison Control Center Hotline Answered by Their CVT’s and Drs.

I have a Great Dane and a Weimie, and as strange as it may sound, they love gummy bears—stale gummy bears to boot. I end up using them as bribes sometimes, but never overindulge. They never get more than one a day. We have new puppies at our house who are five months old and only weigh about 30 pounds. They accidentally got one of the gummies the other night. Can the little bit of sugar and gelatin in the gummies hurt the pups?
—Laura

Your question is not as strange as you think. I have a young daughter who likes gummy bears, and my five dogs are always fixated on her when she eats them! To answer your question, as long as the gummies are not sweetened with xylitol (which can cause seizures and liver failure in dogs), and they are not consuming more than a couple here and there, gummies are not likely to pose a poisoning risk. Of course, these chewy goodies could potentially pose a choking hazard, so do be sure to supervise your dogs and puppies when offering them the occasional gummy.

As a side note, we did manage a case where a dog became very ill and died from eating more than a pound of gummies—so please do be sure to keep these treats your dogs treasure in a secure cabinet above the counter so they do not help themselves.
—Dana Farbman, CVT

Last year, I was shopping at a pet store, and I saw some holiday treats for dogs that contained ginger and cinnamon, things I wouldn’t feel comfortable feeding them. I also saw they’re coming out with chocolate treats for dogs—are they safe since they are made for dogs? Thanks.
—Theresa

In small amounts, these treats are likely to be safe (even chocolate). Some “chocolate” dog treats actually contain carob, which is safe. If these treats make you uncomfortable, I would stick to “traditional” pet treats.
—Dr. Eric Dunayer

JOMP

July 29, 2012 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, On The Lighter Side, Pet Friendship and Love, pet fun, Pet Nutrition, Pets, Unusual Stories | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Chicken Jerky Recipe for dogs

Yummy super-simple treat… and it’s also super-popular with dogs and healthy. Chicken Jerky is a Treat made from thin strips of chicken slow baked to almost the point of crispness.

Ingredients

1 pound chicken breasts (I baked three pounds!)

Start by preheating your oven to 170 or 180 degrees, depending on how low your oven will go. While that’s preheating, assemble the chicken. I used frozen chicken breast tenderloins (this is a great way to use any chicken you’ve got that’s become freezer burned!)

I had thawed the frozen chicken breasts by putting them in the refrigerator overnight…and woke up to find they were still frozen! I put the chicken in a big bowl of cold water for about 15 minutes which thawed it enough to slice with a sharp knife. TIP: It’s easier to slice the chicken when it’s semi-frozen rather than completely thawed; you can use the heel of your hand on the knife to “chop” the slices rather than trying to saw through thawed meat.

The only difficult part of this dog treat recipe is the slicing; you’ll want to slice the chicken no more than about 1/4 inch wide. Slice with the grain of the chicken, rather than against it; this will make the treats a little chewier and make them last a LITTLE bit longer when you give them to your dogs.

Slice up the chicken and place it on a greased cookie sheet; be sure to use one with a slight edge because there will be water and juices from the chicken during the first hour of cooking. Leave about a 1/2 inch or so between slices and just make sure they’re not touching.

Once you’re finished slicing, pop the cookie sheets in the oven and bake for two hours. After two hours, check the slices and see if they’re dry. You don’t want them to be crispy to the point of snapping but you do want them to be very chewy. (They should look like a very done french fry.) Because I baked three pounds of chicken at once, I had to bake my treats for an 90 minutes and I flipped the slices with a spatula after two hours of baking.

When they’re done, remove the treats from the oven and cool on a drying rack. If you don’t have one (I don’t), just flip a dish drainer over and drape with a dish towel then put your treats on the towel to dry. (You just want to get the treats up off the metal cookie sheets so they’ll cool crispier. A wicker basket flipped over and draped with a cup towel work work great, too.)

When the treats are completely cool, bag them in zippered bags or pop them in an airtight container and refrigerate. You can also freeze the treats for several months. Be warned, though: these are VERY popular treats…they’ll go fast! (Cats also love them!)

Dog owners cautioned about chicken jerky treats

Chicken jerky treats may be behind illness and even death in hundreds of dogs nationwide, and the FDA is urging dog owners to beware.

After receiving hundreds of reports of sickened or killed dogs, the FDA has issued a warning about the treats after they were linked to a disease similar to Fanconi syndrome, which can be fatal.

Veterinarian Dean Aldridge of Flathead Pet Emergency explained, "That’s a syndrome where the kidneys are unable to retain electrolytes, so you get electrolyte imbalances that can be fatal. For example, the potassium rates could drop to the point where the heart stops."

No cases have yet been diagnosed in the Flathead Valley, but there have been hundreds of cases nationwide and several in Montana, including a golden retriever that belongs to the Lacopini family in Billings. Aldridge says if it’s caught early, this condition can be treated, but warns that’s not always the case.

Aldridge said, "In most cases with the jerky treats, it’s a correctable syndrome. It’s just that it takes a lot of work and a lot of care. Measuring electrolytes, supplementing electrolytes, until the time that the kidneys do come back around. In some cases it is fatal though, you just can’t get ahead of it."

Aldridge told us this is not the first time vets have seen this problem: "In 2007, there was something that came across, and then in June, we got another alert from the AVMA, that there was some more of it, and that there may be recall’s on the treats, so we’ve been aware that it’s out there since about June."

Here is the full text of the press release from the FDA:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to caution consumers about a potential association between the development of illness in dogs and the consumption of chicken jerky products. The products-also called chicken tenders, strips, or treats-are imported from China. FDA continues to receive complaints of sick dogs that their owners or veterinarians associate with eating chicken jerky products. FDA issued a cautionary warning to consumers in September 2007.

Australian news organizations report that the University of Sydney is also investigating an association between illness in dogs and the consumption of chicken jerky in Australia. At least one firm in Australia has recalled their chicken jerky product and the recall notification stated the product was manufactured in China.

What is FDA Doing?

FDA, in addition to several veterinary diagnostic laboratories in the United States, is working to find out why these products are associated with illness in dogs. To date, scientists have not been able to determine a precise cause for the reported illnesses.

FDA has conducted extensive chemical and microbial testing but has not identified any contaminant.

FDA continues to actively investigate the problem. Many of the illnesses reported may be the result of causes other than eating chicken jerky.

Tips for Consumers

Do not substitute chicken jerky products for a balanced diet. The products are intended to be used occasionally and in small quantities. Owners of small dogs must be especially careful to limit the amount of these products.

If you choose to feed your dog chicken jerky products, watch the dog closely. Stop feeding the product if your dog shows any of the following signs, which may occur within hours to days after feeding the product:

– decreased appetite, although some dogs may continue to eat the treats instead of other foods

– decreased activity

– vomiting

– diarrhea, sometimes with blood

– increased water drinking or increased urination

Call your veterinarian if signs are severe or last for more than 24 hours. Blood tests may indicate kidney failure (increased urea nitrogen and creatinine). Urine tests may indicate Fanconi syndrome (increased glucose).

Although most dogs appear to recover, some reports to FDA have involved dogs that have died.

Consumers and veterinarians should report cases of animal illness associated with pet foods or treats to the FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinator listed for their area.

Pet parents… stop falling for the pet food myth (the baby food myth).  Real food, natural food, raw food, home-cooked food is the answer.  Commercial pet food in an invention to make people/large companies money, not to make your pets healthy.  Start cooking for your pets, at least one meal per day to start with and check the labels.  Do not buy products for consumption for your pets, animals, children or yourselves… and that includes toys and objects your animals and kids could put in their mouths that are made in China.

Source: krtv.com

March 2, 2012 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Dogs, Holistic Pet Health, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pet Recipes, Pets | , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Pet Food Recall (December 2011)

Recall on some pet food. Iams, River Run, Dog Power and Marksman so far.

See FDA U.S. Food and Drug Administration List of Recalls, Market Withdrawals & Safety Alerts HERE

"Some of these fungi (primarily Aspergillus flavus) produce the very lethal mycotoxins called aflatoxins. Aflatoxins are remarkably potent, often causing disease even when ingested in minute amounts. Aflatoxins can cause disease throughout the body, but are most commonly known for causing acute or chronic liver disease and liver cancer" per www.wellvet.com

Proctor & Gamble Recalls Iams Dry Dog Food

Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy dry dog food has been recalled due to higher than acceptable aflatoxin levels.

December 8, 2011 – Updated December 16, 2011

 

The Procter & Gamble company has voluntarily recalled a single production lot of dry dog food due to aflatoxin levels that were detected above the acceptable limit.

The affected product is Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy dry dog food with Use By or Expiration Dates of Feb. 5 or Feb. 6, 2013. The seven-pound bag has a Code Date of 12784177I6 and UPC Code of 1901402305. The eight-pound bag has a Code Dates of 12794177D2 and 12794177D3, and UPC Code of 1901410208. The 17.5-pound bad has Code Dates of 12794177K1 and 12794177K2, and UPC Code of 1901401848.

The product is said to have been distributed to Pennsylvania, but it already has been retrieved from store shelves. No illnesses have been reported in association with this production lot to date, and no other Iams pet food products are involved.

Cargill Animal Nutrition’s River Run and Marksman dry dog foods also have been recalled for the same problem, but they were not distributed in Pennsylvania.

Consumers who purchased the product listed should stop using the product and discard it and contact Iams at 1-866-908-1569 or visit www.iams.com for a replacement voucher.

Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring by-product from the growth of Aspergillus flavus and can be harmful to pets if consumed in significant quantities. Pets that have consumed this product and exhibit symptoms of illness including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, vomiting, yellowish tint to the eyes or gums, or diarrhea should be seen by a veterinarian.

Source:  Peter’s Patch

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December 16, 2011 Posted by | Dogs, Just One More Pet, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Veterinarian, Dr. Karen Becker, dispels the long-held myth that “table food” is bad for your pets.

Animals Like People Benefit From Live Foods

Veterinarian, Dr. Karen Becker, dispels the long-held myth that “table food” is bad for your pets.

Human, edible foods can be very healthy for your pets. Throw away the concept of “cat” food and “dog” food, and just think “food” — food that grows in the ground or comes from animal products.

A whole generation of pet owners is afraid to feed anything but over processed rendered food to their pets. But there’s no way you can create abundant health in an animal by providing only the minimum nutrients it needs for survival. Dogs and cats have a living food requirement, just like you do.

The food you feed your pet should be biologically suited to meet your dog’s or cat’s needs. Dog and cat chow may be nutritionally “complete,” but it is akin to your drinking a meal replacement shake three times a day for the rest of your life … or giving them to your kids in lieu of fresh foods.

Yet, many veterinarians will often recommend you feed your pets kibble or canned food for the rest of their lives. Some will go so far as to say that feeding your pet anything that doesn’t come from a bag or can will be harming your pet!

This is a paradigm problem, and one that can be very confusing for pet owners.

In reality, there’s no way you can give your pet the food it needs to thrive if you do not feed it a biologically appropriate diet that includes a variety of fresh foods.

In fact, a growing number of holistic-minded veterinarians state that processed pet food (kibbled and canned food) is the number one cause of illness and premature death in modern dogs and cats.

So how did conventional veterinary nutrition positions get so skewed?

Well, major dog and cat food manufacturers provide much of the veterinary nutrition information to veterinary students. It becomes engrained in many new vets’ minds that it’s wrong to feed pets “living” fresh foods.

This is a myth!

Your Pets Need Living Foods

Veterinarians tell you to never offer living foods to your pet. But your pets need living foods on a consistent basis to achieve optimal health.

So, yes, you can and should offer your pets some of the very same foods that you enjoy. And since those foods are at a much higher grade nutritionally than typical dog or cat foods, they may be the healthiest foods your pets have ever consumed.

As you know, I recommend you feed your dogs and cats an all raw, nutritionally balanced living food diet. In my opinion, the only viable excuse to not to feed your pets a species appropriate diet is cost. Feeding raw food cost more than dry food .However, raw fed animals have fewer health problems, which mean lower vet bills over a lifetime. If you cannot afford to feed your pet an all raw diet, don’t deny your pet’s access to living foods throughout the day, in the form of treats. Remember, treats (even really healthy treats) should not constitute more than 15 percent of your pet’s daily food intake.

Berries are one of the best treats you can offer. Bite size and packed with antioxidants. Many cats enjoy zucchini and cantaloupe. . My favorite training treats for dogs include peas, raw nuts (remember, the only nuts you should never feed your pets are macadamia nuts).

A salad without dressing, but with plenty of dark green leafy vegetables, is also good for your cats — your pets are chewing on your houseplants for a reason, after all.

Avoid giving your carnivorous companions biologically inappropriate foods, including grains, such as oats, soy, millet, , wheat, or rice. Dogs and cats do not have a carbohydrate requirement and feeding your pets these pro-inflammatory foods creates unnecessary metabolic roadblocks to health.

Furthermore, there are certainly some foods that are toxic to feed to dogs and cats such as grapes, raisins, macadamia nuts and onions. Never feed your pets these foods.

The Optimal Choice to Feed Your Pets

I highly recommend you give your dog or cat an opportunity to experience living raw foods like fruits and veggies as treats, and feed them a biologically appropriate, balanced raw diet the rest of the time.

Remember, your pet is resilient and can eat a variety of suboptimal, metabolically stressful foods on occasion and be fine, but because it’s my goal to provide a diet that most closely fits your companion’s biological requirements, I don’t recommend a lifetime of kibble or other “dead” over-processed food.

The goal is to provide a diet that mimics your pet’s biological nutritional requirements as closely as possible … in this case it means rethinking the “lifetime of dry food” or “canned food” theory.

If you are unable or unwilling to feed your pet a species-appropriate, nutritionally balanced, raw food diet, then I strongly recommend you compromise with the next best choice: USDA-approved canned foods (and supplement with raw)

My last choice would be a dry food (kibble), made from human-grade ingredients with little to no grains, and LOTS OF WATER.

But no matter which option you choose, remember that you can treat your dog and cat to berries, leafy greens, raw nuts and many other fresh fruits, veggies and meats on a regular basis.

I hope this insight will help you feel more confident offering foods and treats to your pets that are unadulterated and fresh. They deserve the same benefit of living foods that you get, and there’s no better way to start than by sharing some of these raw healthy foods with your dog or cat today.

We have always cooked for our pets, so always find it amazing, if not horrifying, that there really are pets who never get live food and who are doomed to eat the same dry food every day and that there really are pet owners who think that would be okay!!  This myth created by the pet food industry and perpetuated by pet stores who just want to sell animals, regardless of whether the potential purchasers should be pet parents and then accepted by the “ME” generation, is another one of those practices like keeping your pets in a crate all day or all night, or shock collars, electric fences and collars with spikes etc that defy all common sense and really fall into a category of pet abuse or neglect, perhaps pet abuse light… but unacceptable pet parenting to be sure!!

Would you want to eat the same packaged food everyday?  Would you want to be locked in a cage all day or all night?  Would you want to have to wait to go to the bathroom all night or most of the day, until some lets you out and says it is okay?  Would you want to receive an electric shock when you tried to talk or walk across a boundary area… or have spikes dig into you?  Would you do these things to your kids?

When making decisions for your fur-babies, you should ask yourself, “Would I want to be treated this way?  And would I make these choices for my human children?”, and then act accordingly!!  As Dr. Laura would say… Use common sense and compassion and “then go do the right thing!”.

Posted:  Just One More Pet

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November 11, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Table Scraps

Sure, you’d like Fifi to share in the joys of the holiday table, but resist the urge to be generous. Foods and drinks you digest easily, like the following, can cause trouble for your pooch:

Dinner rolls — Dough expands in the stomach, creating distressing gas.

Onions and garlic — These flavor enhancers contain a compound that could damage a dog’s red blood cells, causing anemia.

Rich sauces — Gravy upsets the stomach and may lead to pancreatitis.

Bones — Sharp pieces of bone can choke a dog or pierce or block her gastrointestinal tract.

Alcohol — Even slightly spiked eggnog can be toxic, so don’t leave any drinks unattended.

In addition to avoiding the “no-nos”…  how much people food you share at the holidays should be gaged by whether you normally cook for your pets and their main diet is so-called people food, whether they eat only traditional dog food, whether they eat raw food, or whether they normally eat dog food with a little cooked or people food or get  some scraps here and there.  But sharing a little of your holiday food is certainly not a bad thing!!

December 19, 2008 Posted by | Just One More Pet, On The Lighter Side, Pet Nutrition, Pets | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gourmet Doggie Biscuits and Some Holiday Snacking Tips

gourmet_doggie_biscuits

For those of you who have always been curious as to how to make dog treats at home for your pet here is a basic recipe to get you started. With all the dog food & treat recalls that have caused severe conditions and even death; it is nice to know what is going into your pet.  It is also a great gift for your pet friends!!

 

I N G R E D I E N T S

3 1/2 cup all-purpose (or unbleached) flour
2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup cornmeal
 
1/2 cup skim milk powder
 
1 tablespoon (or 1 package) dry yeast
 
3 1/2 cups lukewarm chicken or meat broth (about 2- 15oz cans)

1 egg beaten with about 2 tablespoons water (for egg wash)

 

I N S T R U C T I O N S

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 

Grease cookie sheets.

Mix together all dry ingredients.

Dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm chicken or meat broth. Let yeast broth mixture set 10 min. Then stir in flour mixture until a soft dough is formed. If the dough is too sticky you can add more flour.

Roll resulting dough out 1/4″ thick. Cut dog biscuit shapes from dough. Put scraps back in bowl and re-roll out until all dough is used.

Brush biscuits with egg wash.

Bake on greased cookie sheets at 300 degrees for 45 min.

Then turn off oven and leave in overnight to finish hardening.

Makes 60 medium-sized biscuits**

 

Storing Dog Treats 
In general you should store dog treats the same way you would homemade people cookies. That being said, there are two main variables that determine storage time – the amount and type of fat in the recipe and your local weather conditions. If your recipe uses fats such as butter, or meat bits or juices then it will be more prone to rancidity than a recipe that uses some vegetable oil or shortening. Your treats may mold or spoil much faster in humid or very hot climates.

Refrigeration and Freezing – Refrigeration will prolong the life of more fragile dog treats. Make sure to store in a tightly sealed container or zip lock bag. You can also freeze most treats in zip lock freezer bags. Allow to thaw completely before use.

 

Below are a couple “Goodie” questions from the ASPCA Poison Control Center Hotline Answered by Their CVT’s and Drs.

I have a Great Dane and a Weimie, and as strange as it may sound, they love gummy bears—stale gummy bears to boot. I end up using them as bribes sometimes, but never overindulge. They never get more than one a day. We have new puppies at our house who are five months old and only weigh about 30 pounds. They accidentally got one of the gummies the other night. Can the little bit of sugar and gelatin in the gummies hurt the pups?
—Laura

Your question is not as strange as you think. I have a young daughter who likes gummy bears, and my five dogs are always fixated on her when she eats them! To answer your question, as long as the gummies are not sweetened with xylitol (which can cause seizures and liver failure in dogs), and they are not consuming more than a couple here and there, gummies are not likely to pose a poisoning risk. Of course, these chewy goodies could potentially pose a choking hazard, so do be sure to supervise your dogs and puppies when offering them the occasional gummy.

As a side note, we did manage a case where a dog became very ill and died from eating more than a pound of gummies—so please do be sure to keep these treats your dogs treasure in a secure cabinet above the counter so they do not help themselves.
—Dana Farbman, CVT


Last year, I was shopping at a pet store, and I saw some holiday treats for dogs that contained ginger and cinnamon, things I wouldn’t feel comfortable feeding them. I also saw they’re coming out with chocolate treats for dogs—are they safe since they are made for dogs? Thanks.
—Theresa

In small amounts, these treats are likely to be safe (even chocolate). Some “chocolate” dog treats actually contain carob, which is safe. If these treats make you uncomfortable, I would stick to “traditional” pet treats.
—Dr. Eric Dunayer

These are great Christmas Gifts for your four-legged friends.

November 19, 2008 Posted by | Just One More Pet, On The Lighter Side, Pets, Success Stories | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments