With fall right around the corner, the national pumpkin frenzy is about to be back in full swing. If you are looking for an easy fall inspired dog treat recipe, consider making Pumpkin Ball Treats. These homemade dog treats call for a handful of simple ingredients and are fairly easy to make. This fall inspired treat can even be enjoyed year round!
Pumpkin Ball Treat Ingredients
- 1/3 cup Oats
- 1/2 of an Apple, peeled and diced, or apple sauce as alternative
- 1/2 cup Canned Pumpkin (Not Pumpkin Pie Filling)
- 3 tablespoons Peanut Butter
- 3 tablespoons Greek Yogurt
- First, peel and de-core the apple. Be sure to remove all of the seeds. Next, dice the apple into small pieces. In a medium bowl, add the pumpkin and peanut butter. With a spoon, mix together the pumpkin and peanut butter until they are combined. Next, stir in the Greek Yogurt. Next, add the oats and mix well. Make sure the oats are covered really well with the pumpkin and peanut butter. Lastly, add the diced apples and mix until the apples are combined to create a dough-like mixture.
- Once the “dough” is formed, roll the dough into little balls and place the balls in an ice cube tray. Place the ice try in the freezer overnight. Freezing the treats overnight will ensure that they are good and solid, which will refresh your dog.
This recipes creates around twelve treats, depending on the shape and size of the ice cube tray that you choose to use. You can choose to use whatever ice cube tray you have available. If you do not have an ice cube tray, you can roll the dough into small balls and place them on a cookie sheet. Then place the cookie sheet in the freezer overnight, or until the balls are frozen. For easier storage, place the treats in an airtight container and store in the freezer.
These Pumpkin Balls are perfect for your dog’s . If you’re unfamiliar with a KONG, it is a durable toy that you can insert inside of snacks and treats to keep your dog busy. If you plan on placing the homemade Pumpkin Ball treats in a KONG, make your treats a size and shape that will fit inside the KONG.
Benefits of Pumpkin Ball Treats
If you were wondering if it is safe to feed your dog oats, the answer is yes. Oats are a great source of fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins and minerals. Vitamins found in oats include vitamin E and vitamin B. Oats also provide a source of zinc, iron and selenium. You can read more about feeding your dog oats by clicking here.
Adding Greek Yogurt to your dog’s diet has nutritional benefits. Greek Yogurt is a great source of probiotics, which can benefit your dog’s digestion. Greek Yogurt can also boost your canine’s immune system, helping fight infections, including ear infections and skin infections. However, it is important to only give your dog a small amount of Greek Yogurt; large amounts can cause diarrhea, and no one wants to deal with that mess.
Canned Pumpkin is great for your dog’s digestion as well your dog’s skin. Feeding your dog pumpkin regulates stool and helps soothe itchy, flaky skin. Canned Pumpkin is also loaded with fiber and beta-carotene. Your dog’s body then converts beta-carotene into vitamin A.
When feeding your dog peanut butter, it is important to choose a peanut butter that does not contain xylitol. Xylitol is an “all-natural” sugar-substitute that is deadly to dogs, even in small amounts. Peanut Butter serves as a source of healthy fat and protein for your canine.
Apples are full of nutrients. Not only are apples a good source of fiber, vitamin A and C, they also help clean residue off your dog’s teeth, which helps freshen bad breath. Apples are also a great source of calcium and phosphorus. However, it is important that you do not feed your dog apple seeds because they contain a toxic substance called cyanide.
Other Healthier Treats
If taking the time to make homemade dog treats isn’t your thing, there are a handful of healthier options you can choose from when giving your dog treats. Instead of reaching for processed, store bought treats, consider giving your dog an alternative, healthier snack. Consider the following list of snack and treat ideas.
Healthier Dog Snack and Treat Ideas:
- Bell Peppers
- Green Beans (Fresh or canned with no added salt)
- Sweet Potatoes
Choosing a nutritious snack over a manufactured dog treat has many health benefits. Rich in vitamin A, C, and E, bell peppers are a great sweet treat. Low in calories and high in fiber, carrots provide a crunchy snack while preventing plaque buildup on your dog’s teeth. In moderation, bananas can satisfy your dog’s sweet tooth, while providing potassium, manganese biotin, and copper in your dog’s diet. Blueberries are high in antioxidants, fiber, and phytochemicals which make them a superfood. Strawberries also contain antioxidants and vitamin C, and they also can help whiten your dog’s teeth! Green beans are a great treat option for your dog because they high in iron. Packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, and fiber, Pears are another healthy option. High in phytonutrients and antioxidants, cucumbers are a great option for weight maintenance; they are low-calorie and also low in fat. Cucumbers also have anti-inflammatory benefits. When feeding your dog watermelon, be sure to remove seeds because they can cause an intestinal blockage. Also, be sure to remove the rind before giving your dog watermelon. Watermelon is a great source of potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. Sweet potatoes are great for your dog’s digestive health and they are also low in fat.
Make the Transition
If you currently feed your dog store bought, processed treats, try making the transition to healthier treats. Your dog’s health will thank you for choosing a healthier alternative by either making your own homemade treats or choosing a fresh, healthier alternative.