Homemade dog treats are a great alternative to store bought snacks. They are cheaper, healthier, and include ingredients of your personal preference. Our recipe to single ingredient healthy homemade dog treats can be found below.

Mojo with a hand of healthy homemade dog treats
Single ingredient healthy homemade dog treats.

 

Although often advertised as healthy and tasty, the ingredients of commercial dog treats are questionable. As an example, let’s discuss Purina® Adventuros Nuggets:

Grains, glycerol, meat and animal byproducts(8%), sugar, vegetable protein, vegetable byproducts, minerals, oils and fats.

These treats are said to be ‘rich in meat’, yet they only contain 8% of unspecified meat and animal byproducts. They have a ‘wild boar flavour’ but they do not include a single gram of boar. The flavour comes from a sensory additive, and there are colourants included too.

A quick calculation shows that these treats contain 62% carbohydrates, that dogs do not need at all.

Most dog treats are made with similar ingredients, so I’ve been on the lookout for a recipe for homemade dog treats.

Mojo holding a banana
Although banana is delicious, it’s not species appropriate!

 

When scrolling through Pinterest I was sadly disappointed with the recipes I found. Most people include ingredients like oats, peanut butter, banana, flour, apple, and numerous other types of plant material.

Mojo loves the taste of these ingredients, but they are very unhealthy for an animal that thrives on a meat based diet. The sugars can actually spark yeast infections, and feeding plant material will cause loose stools.

Bowl of raw meat for a dog
Mojo consumes little to no plant material – only the occasional supplement.

 

As you know, Mojo is fed a prey model raw diet, meaning that she consumes little to no fruit and vegetables. Although we as humans are tempted by sugar and make less than clever decisions to eat unhealthy snacks, it doesn’t mean we have to feed these to our dogs.

Mojo grabbing a treat
Mojo loves these healthy homemade dog treats – these particular ones were made of wild rabbit

 

There is no need to feed sugar to a dog just because you like the taste, a dog is not a human, please acknowledge that! Yes, our dogs can enjoy a snack every once in awhile just like we do. These however don’t have to include carbohydrates. Dogs actually prefer the taste of fat and protein – or in other words: dogs want meat!

Hence, I decided to share a recipe for single ingredient healthy homemade dog treats. That’s right, they are easy to make, and all you need is one ingredient!

Jar of healthy homemade dog treats
Cutting smaller pieces is perfect when you’re looking for training treats!

 

Visit your local grocery store, or a pet store that sells frozen raw meat, and buy some meat of your preference. We mostly go for game: deer, rabbit, hare, pheasant. It’s clever to buy in bulk, so if you’re stocking up for your next meal prep, make sure to take some extra to make your own easy dog treats!

Baking tray with small pieces of raw meat
Line your baking tray with parchment paper so the treats don’t stick to the tray.

 

Here’s a video of our first try at homemade dog treats, in which we used leftover kangaroo meat from our raw food prep the day before. A week ago, we tried wild rabbit, and that worked perfectly too!

Print Recipe
Homemade dog treats with one single ingredient
500 grams of low fat meat of your choice
Jar of healthy homemade dog treats
Course Treat
Cuisine dog
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 9 hours
Passive Time 9 hours
Servings
Ingredients
  • 500 grams of low fat meat of your choice
Course Treat
Cuisine dog
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 9 hours
Passive Time 9 hours
Servings
Ingredients
  • 500 grams of low fat meat of your choice
Jar of healthy homemade dog treats
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 75degreesC (167degreesF)
  2. Cut the meat into small pieces keeping in mind that they will decrease in size as they release their moisture.
  3. Spread out the pieces of meat over a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
  4. Place the baking tray in the middle of your preheated oven.
  5. After 60 minutes, lower the temperature of your oven to 60degreesC (140degreesF) and let dry for another 8 hours.
  6. Take the treats out of the oven and let them cool down completely.
  7. Once cooled down, store the treats in an airtight container and put them in the refrigerator to keep fresh.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. One reason many of us use the ingredients you mention is because many meats lack the vitamins and minerals they may otherwise lack in their diets. You feed yours high-quality meats, including wild game. Those are animals that themselves eat things farm-raised animals do not. So we supplement treats and homemade food with oats, peanut butter, banana, flour, apples, and other goodies.

    Oats are very good for dogs. They contain vitamins & minerals and fiber that helps keep their anal glands in proper order. Dogs *love* peanut butter. I always recommend against using any that list more than peanuts on the label. Organic is better if you can afford it. Bananas? Heck yes! Flour is okay if it’s not bleached wheat. I make most non-wheat flours I use. Brown rice flour, flax meal, and others, and some store bought that are cheaper to buy than their sources (almond flour). Apple’s? I’ve yet to meet a dog that didn’t like them. No seeds, of course. I also include things such as sweet potato (cooked), dried cranberries, fresh, in-season fruit like blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and others. If I hit a good sale, I buy as much as I can afford. I’ll use some, then vacuum bag and freeze the rest. Having an upright freezer pays for itself in savings over the years when you’re on a tight budget.

    If I could afford to feed my dog the very good quality things you give your dogs, I would for sure. I’m disabled and on very limited income, but I feed my girl the very best I can. She has a much better diet than dogs a lot of people with much better means get. I still read everything I can, and I really appreciate what you’ve written and admire what you do for your dogs. If I could hunt, my doggo would feast on wild game as much as possible.

    One thing I feel you should consider adding is to recommend feeding dogs only fully-cooked venison. I learned the hard way that raw deer (and related species) is toxic to dogs. I once had a neighbour who donated deer legs for my dogs. One wouldn’t touch hers; the one that did, later got very sick. She got through it fine, but it was very scary.

    Best wishes,
    kat deville

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