Healthy Treats to Stuff in a Kong
Your dog's new favorite treat is actually a treat for you too! Not for you to actually eat (unless you like weird food combinations), but it's a treat to get some relaxation time. If you've never given your dog a toy stuffed with frozen treats, then it's time to switch it up. Dogs get bored and need to stay busy with physical activity and mental stimulation. When your dog needs a distraction, give him/her a frozen Kong treat filled with healthy ingredients. This is easy to prepare, lasts a long time, and it's a great way to keep your dog entertained. It also slows down pups who eat too fast.
Ready to mix up your dog's treats? Find your dog's favorite Kong or any alternative toy that you can stuff with treats, freeze and easily wash. Next, combine a few of the following healthy ingredients to fill the toy. Freeze the toy for a few hours while you take your doggo on an adventure. When it's time for some distraction, surprise your dog with his/her new favorite treato! 🍦
You can get creative with stuffing recipes. Mix and match your dog's favorite foods to prepare new treat combinations. Although some of these food combinations may seem gross to you ( applesauce and beef heart.. yum? ), your dog will most likely love it! Choose from these healthy, dog-friendly fruits, veggies, meat, and freezable food options below:
Fruits and Veggies
Use these ingredients in moderation.
- Brussels Sprouts
- Sugar Snap Peas
- Sweet Potato
- Watermelon (seedless)
Liquids and Moist Foods
Include one or more of the following ingredients with your treat stuffing to use as the base. Liquids and moist foods freeze easily and helps make the treat last longer (meaning your dog will stay occupied for a while).
- Natural, low-sodium Chicken Broth
- Coconut Oil
- Cottage Cheese
- Peanut Butter (xylitol-free)
- Pumpkin Puree
Protein and Raw Foods
Is your dog on a raw food diet? There are several healthy meat and fish options that you can put in your dog's kong toy. Raw meats that seem to work best for Kong stuffing (especially when frozen) are eggs, tripe, raw organ meats, ground meats and chicken broth. Keep in mind that raw foods can get messy as they thaw. Here are a few ingredients to choose from:
- A small portion of the pup's daily meat, cut into very tiny pieces
- Green Tripe
- Freeze-dried liver
- Dried beef heart
- Beef or Lamb or Pork lung
- Dried muscle meat (like chicken breast)
- Pieces of raw liver or other organs
- Sardines or other fish
To make the Kong stuffing last longer, you can freeze it in the Kong for several hours. You can also prepare and freeze a few stuffed Kongs ahead of time to save yourself some extra work.
Avoid overfeeding your pup. Don't fill the Kong all the way up. Fill the Kong about one-quarter or half-full of food and add broth if you plan to freeze it.
You can keep your dog more interested by using a variety of treats! Switching up the Kong stuffing will also prevent you from overfeeding one type of ingredient.
Check out other easy-to-make dog treat recipes here!
As you know, not all dogs have the same diet. Please consult your veterinarian before feeding these foods to your pet.
Some of these foods and ingredients have high sugar content and need to be used in moderation. Be sure to remove bones from any meats if you plan to give your dog a Kong while he/she is unsupervised.
Remember to use these treats and snacks in moderation, especially when trying new foods with your dog. Some pups have sensitive stomachs, and the addition of new foods may cause digestive issues. Make sure to figure these treats into your dog's daily or weekly food amount to avoid unnecessary weight gain. Learn about foods you should never feed your dog here.
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