A long time ago I was just a young mom with a passion for cooking, working in an awesome veterinary hospital and recently moved from a big contemporary home filled with floor to ceiling windows, and white everything to Green Acres…oh, and then there was the beautiful Yellow Lab that I adopted as a senior who had life threatening allergies.
Knowing enough about food and nutrition to be dangerous, I also knew that the prescription food he was eating was a nasty blend of things no living thing should eat. I asked my Vet if he would help guide me toward a home cooked elimination and supportive diet for Buddy, and dear readers, the rest is history.
You see, most people start cooking and end up immersed in all things health and wellness because of an illness, an injury, dedication to a loved ones health and so on. Me’ It was a stinky, infected, AMAZING dog.
Over the last almost 20 years I made many dog treats and meals for friends and family, and also some clients here and there. When I first developed this recipe years ago it was a favorite of every dog aged horse who tired it. I was all set to send some samples off to the lab and register them to sell, but I’ve done a good deal of thinking lately and I’ve decided to start freely sharing with you all these years of recipes and experiences with animal wellness (people wellness too). Life is too short, and if just one sweet dog can eat these safely…it’s all worth it.
These treats come together quickly and require few ingredients. They aren’t messy to make and I usually bake 3-4 batches at a time because every creature on the farm loves them with the exception of my mare, Harper. She’s squarely in Camp Peppermint and wrinkles her nose at homemade treats!
As with everything I make and share here, I use organic and locally grown whenever possible, and I can’t promise that substitutions will work as well as the listed ingredients.
Lets go bake some treats, shall we’
Pumpkin Oat Dog and Horse Treats
By Colleen Cheechalk
Makes approximately 55 treats
2-3/4 cups Whole Oats pulsed into flour *see note
1/4 cup Whole Oats
1/3 cup Ground Flaxseed or 1/4 cup Whole Flaxseed *see note
1 15 oz can of Plain Organic Pumpkin
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 tsp Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1 tsp Turmeric
Using a food processor or Bullet type blender, pulse the 2-3/4 cup oats and the flaxseed into a coarse flour. *Note* You may be able to use ground oat flour and ground flaxseed in equal amounts, but it is more affordable to grind oat flour as you need it, and flaxseed is best freshly ground.
Add the spices, salt and pepper and mix to combine.
Add the pumpkin and mix until a firm dough begins to come together. Add the remain oats and finish mixing by hand until you have a stiff gingerbread-like dough.
Divide the dough in half and let rest while you prepare the pans and preheat oven to 350.
Roll each half into a log the length of about 18′ , then cut into equal slices about 1/2′ thick. You’ll have about 25+ pieces per log.
Reshape each slice into a circle, and arrange on cookie sheet(s). These do not expand while baking, so one full sheet pan should be large enough for all the cookies.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, then turn off the oven and leave them for 1 hour until dry and crunchy
These will keep in an airtight jar on the counter for about a week. They refrigerate and freeze beautifully!