Think of all those seasonal treats, from pumpkin lattes to pumpkin pancakes. The warm aroma fills your house with all kinds of deliciousness, which means you probably can’t get in one bite without Fido wagging his tail and asking for a piece of the pie. Finally, put an end to the begging by letting pup have his own pumpkin fun. After all, pumpkin is actually good for dogs.
If your pup is anything like mine, she’ll love the taste of this sweet squash! Meanwhile, you’ll love the fact that pumpkin is packed with nutrients, including carotenoids, vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc. This kind of nutritional profile helps your dog maintain a healthy coat and skin, while supporting eye health and their immune system. Plus, this fall favorite is a good source of fiber, which is great for your dog’s digestive system. If your pup could stand to lose a few pounds, the fiber — paired with low sodium and cholesterol contents — can also help keep her belly full and calorie count in check.
As you’re baking your way through the holidays, don’t forget your four-legged friend. These pumpkin dog treats are easy to make and features one of their all-time favorites: peanut butter! I used whole grain brown rice flour to make these treats healthy and suitable for dogs with allergies. And for an extra nutritional boost, I added flaxseed meal (mixed with water) as an alternative to eggs. Among its many benefits, flaxseed helps keep their fur soft and shiny.
Pumpkin-Peanut Butter Dog Treats
2 ½ cups whole grain brown rice flour
¼ cup canned pumpkin
¼ cup peanut butter (make sure the PB you use does NOT contain xylitol, a sweetener that’s toxic to dogs)
2 Tbsp. flaxseed meal
6 Tbsp. (or 3 oz) water
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, mix together flaxseed meal and water and let sit for two minutes.
- In a separate bowl, add pumpkin and peanut butter and stir to combine.
- Add the remaining ingredients, including the flaxseed-water mixture, and mix until well blended. Note: Add water as needed to make the dough workable. Generally, it should be dry and crumbly, though.
- Pack the dough into a ball. On a floured surface, roll into desired thickness. Cut into shapes with a knife or fun-shaped cookie cutter.
- Place treats on baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until crisp. Cooking time will vary depending on the size and thickness of your cookies.