Make Your Own Dog Treats, Now With More Chicken Hearts!

I’ve had people tell me that eating raw chicken makes their dog really happy, but you know what else makes them really happy? Eating used sanitary pads.
Publish date:
March 8, 2013
food, pets, fun, dogs

When you are the progeny of two veterinarians, a lot of people assume that you must also know all about fixing broken animals. This puts me in the difficult position of wanting to show off, but also not being a doctor at all.

I like to dazzle people with facts. Did you know that cats have barbed penises? These serve to rip the vaginal wall and induce ovulation. Science!

But then conversations like this happen:

Well-meaning dude friend: Claire, I’m baby-sitting my ex-girlfriend's dog.

Claire: Uh-huh.

WMDF: Her vagina is hanging out.

Claire: Your ex-girlfriend’s? The dog's? I can help with neither.

WMDF: Dog’s. Do you have something I can do at home until my ex gets back?

Claire: No. There is no DIY remedy for a prolapsed vagina. Please go to a vet.

WMDF: She doesn’t seem upset.

Claire: Please take her to a vet.


Basically, I am Not A Doctor. I really like hanging out with dogs, and I like to be bossy and tell you not to feed your dog grapes, but I am not comfortable dispensing actual medical advice.

What I will do is give you some tasty recipes for DIY pet treats! It seems like pet treats are always being recalled, so I’m not very comfortable buying them. My mom started making cookies for her herd of King Charles Spaniels after that first chicken jerky scandal and sometimes her husband eats them.

I’m going to give you some recipes I tried out, with accompanying ratings from Kira and Angie. Solaris (the cat) cannot participate as he can only eat his special food, otherwise crystals will grow in his penis. I was intrigued by this recipe and this recipe, so if anyone wants to make these and report back, that would be cool.

The first DIY treat is super easy and super good for them, for it is:

1. Raw Carrots.

There is not a lot I can say about raw carrots. My dogs go crazy for them. They are un-processed, crunchy (to clean their teeth), and full of nutrients. Just don’t give your dog a whole bag of carrots, he/she will shit all over your house.

Angie: 7 out of 10 cat poops

Kira: Palate cleansing, I would eat these in between that grasshopper I found and drinking out of the toilet.

2. The Heart of a Chicken.

Or, you know, a whole bunch of chicken hearts. This one is also very easy. All you have to do is pan-fry those a little, guys. They are also super cheap, and again, un-processed. It should be noted that this is not at all for the squeamish; these look like hearts. It’s really obvious. My husband couldn’t even deal. I think they’re kind of cute. You could also feed these to your cat -- just cut them into smaller pieces.

I noticed that a lot of people (on the Internet) give these to their dogs raw. I’m not super into this practice because salmonella. Also, I don’t want to handle a bloody, raw chicken heart every time I want my dogs to do tricks. I’ve had people tell me that eating raw chicken makes their dog really happy, but you know what else makes them really happy? Eating used sanitary pads. So maybe they shouldn’t make all of their own choices.

There was also a bonus piece of liver among the hearts. It’s like horse-meat-gate all over again.

Kira and Angie seemed super excited from the smell of these alone. I think these were the favorite, but it’s hard to verify, because they can’t talk, guys.

Angie: I would literally eat these until I puked. Literally. I’m a dog. We do that.

Kira: A stunning main course. I would serve them with a side of anything because I’m a dog and I eat anything.

3. Frosty Hearts (or cubes, or cups, or pi symbols)

Fun Fact: Dogs cannot sweat. Since I live in Florida, I like to buy my dogs those super-expensive-made-for-dogs ice creams. You know, for the summer months (January-December).

The DIY-version of these are a little more time intensive, but much cheaper, and if you make them yourself you ensure that you are not including any preservatives or whatever it is you don’t want to feed your furry babies. I used this recipe and added strawberries (good for teeth) because I had some strawberries that were about to turn.

NOTE: Please research which fruits are okay to feed dogs before adding them to the treats. Not all are.

These are easy to make, especially if you have a food processor. My food processor might be usurping the #1-all-time-best-kitchen-appliance spot from my stand mixer. I dunno, I can hypothetically make sausage and pasta with the mixer, so we’ll see. I also used novelty ice cube trays to make these, because my dogs care about the shape of their food. A pancake pen helped neatly deposit the mixture.

Angie: I liked that these were cold, so I was forced to eat them a little more slowly than I would eat a normal treat.

Kira: I got brain freeze.

4. Carrot Banana Cookies.

Like I told you before, these bitches go crazy for carrots. I used this really fancy recipe but I was less fancy about it. I didn’t have any whole wheat (pronounced as you would pronounce Will Wheaton) because I hate it. I used regular flour. It’s probably fine.

The food processor is again really helpful for this one, because of all the shredded carrots and the bananas.

The author of this recipe used adorable bone-shaped cookie cutters that she purchased off of etsy. I do not have my shit that together. I tried to find my Erlenmeyer-shaped cookie cutters, but failed. Instead, I just used a cookie-dough scoop and plopped the dough on a greased pan. I think this resulted in a softer treat than rolling them would, and since Angie is lacking all of her teeth, she really appreciated it.

Angie: *endless chewing sounds*

Kira: I wish they were bone-shaped.

I don’t know if you guys enjoyed reading this, but the dogs really enjoyed me writing it. Angie was so grateful; she rubbed her eye boogers all over my bare leg. Kira showed her appreciation by helping with clean up.

What do you guys give your pets as treats? Would you cook chicken hearts for them or am I just that gross?

Claire tweets mostly pictures of her dogs and food. Follow her, if you are into that kinda thing. @clairelizzie.