It's fun and easy to make homemade dog biscuits for special occasions or every-day snacking. Homemade Bowser biscuits make good gifts to give friends with a new puppy or an old soul. It's a thoughtful friend indeed who thinks to bake for someone's pal.
Every Day Ordinaries
Feed ordinary dog biscuits every day as treats or to supplement your puppy's regular kibble: Dissolve 2 teaspoons of yeast in 1/2 cup of warm water. In a bowl, combine 5 to 6 cups of whole-wheat flour, 2 tablespoons of oregano or other dried herb -- use whatever's on hand -- one egg, and 1 to 2 cups of broth. Add 3 tablespoons of sweetener such as agave, honey or sugar. Blend in the yeast water. Knead gently with oiled hands and add more flour if necessary until you have a nice, smooth ball of dough. Roll to 1/4-inch thick and cut with a cookie cutter. For a shine, brush beaten egg white onto each biscuit. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes on an ungreased cookie sheet. Turn the cookies over and bake an additional 15 minutes. Turn off the oven and leave the cookies in the oven overnight for a nice crunchy texture.
Pumpkin Oatio Bars
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Oatios are tasty and nutritious. Gather 6 cups of oatmeal, 2 cups of whole-wheat flour, 4 eggs, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, 1/3 cup of sweetener, 1/4 cup of molasses, 1 cup of milk and 6 ounces of pureed pumpkin. Toss all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Grease a cookie sheet with raised rims and spread the mixture on the sheet. Score with a knife at 2- to 4-inch intervals. Sprinkle shredded carrots or raw sweet potato for a pretty topping and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for an hour. Turn off the oven and allow the cookies to cool in the oven for several hours.
Snoopy loves these because they are made with peanut butter. Take 1/2 cup of water or broth, 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, 2 eggs, 4 to 5 tablespoons of chunky or smooth peanut butter, 2 cups of flour and 1/2 cup each of cornmeal and oats. Mix all the wet ingredients and blend in the dry ingredients a little at a time until you have a firm ball of dough. Add more water if necessary. Drop bits of dough onto a lightly greased cookie sheet, or roll out the dough and cut with cookie cutters. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Turn off the oven and allow the cookies to cool until crispy.
If you're a vegan and Fido wants in on the act, here's a cookie you can both enjoy. Take 2 1/2 cups of white or wheat flour, add 3/4 cup of plain or vanilla soymilk, 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, 2 to 3 tablespoons of sweetener, 3/4 cup of vegetable broth, 1/2 cup of shredded carrots and a tablespoon of egg replacer. Mix all the ingredients and knead well. Turn it onto a floured surface and roll out to a thickness of about 1/4 inch. Cut with cookie cutters or cut into bars. Bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes. Turn off the oven and allow to cool for several hours.
Michelle A. Rivera is the author of many books and articles. She attended the University of Missouri Animal Cruelty School and is certified with the Florida Animal Control Association. She is the executive director of her own nonprofit, Animals 101, Inc. Rivera is an animal-assisted therapist, humane educator, former shelter manager, rescue volunteer coordinator, dog trainer and veterinary technician.