Dog Treat Ingredients: Store Bought vs. Homemade

Dog owners love giving their furry friends a treat whether it be for a trick, training, or fun. Valerie Cline, from The Whole Dog Journal, sums up treat giving very well, “Treats are fine; after all, we snack between meals! But, just as with our snacks, what treats you choose to give your dog should contribute – not take away from – the overall healthfulness of his diet.”

As dog owners, we need to educate ourselves on what is good and bad for our dogs. Heather a vet technician lists toxic foods that can harm your dog on her webpage, this list is a great start to learning what can harm your dog. The only thing I would make you aware of that wasn’t on the list is avocados. With that being said, please be careful about feeding your dog human food or scraps and if you are unsure please contact your vet.

So what should and shouldn’t be in your dog’s treats?

Notice the differences of ingredients in each bag of treats.

Notice the differences of ingredients in each bag of treats.

What should be in dog treats:

  • Whole ingredients like rice, wheat, and eggs.

  • Ingredients like vitamin C and E to help keep treats fresh.

  • Meat ingredients should be whole. For example, Lamb versus lamb by-products, Lamb is better.

What shouldn’t be in dog treats:

Dog treats are not the entire substance of your dog’s diet, if the treats have more sugar for instance they are not necessarily bad, remember it’s a treat!

Homemade treats are a really good route to take with your dog, especially because you know what your dog likes and dislikes, and what is going into each treat. My favorite place to look for dog treat recipes is Pinterest, you can follow my doggie board or find your own. Most homemade treats will include banana, pumpkin, peanut butter, oatmeal, and/or carrots. I’ve made pupcakes for Ruby and she loved them, I can’t wait to try a peanut butter bacon or oatmeal treat for her next.

PupcakesWhat kind of homemade treat would you like to make for your furry friend? Did it surprise you how many toxic foods there are for dogs?

Responsibilities of Breeding

October 23rd marked Ruby’s first birthday so only one more year until we can breed her. (Don’t worry we spoiled Ruby with homemade pupcakes and a squeaky stuffed animal.)

Happy First Birthday Ruby! 20131023_193100

Breeding a dog is a decision that should not be taken lightly by any pet owner and there are many things to consider especially with crossbred dogs.

For example:

  • Crossbred dogs can have a unique look. With goldendoodles you cannot predict their coat, color, or size exactly, but they are all very pretty dogs.
  • Careful crossbreeding can lower the chance of congenital issues if the breeder picks the dam and stud wisely.
  • It is hard to judge what size the dog will be. This can be an issue with some new owners if they have smaller living quarters or wanted a certain sized dog. Goldendoodles will range in size and are dependent on their mothers’ and fathers’ traits.
  • Temperaments can be difficult to predict. Although Goldendoodles are known for their docile temperament, that doesn’t mean that crossbreeding other types of dogs is a win-win situation.
  • There can be a potential for higher risk deliveries, mostly because the dogs are of different sizes. Sometimes the dam will have to have a c-section so her and her puppies survive.

Puppies

Some more serious things to consider with breeding are:

  • A Dam’s health is very important every step of the way. With the dam getting pregnant, there is a chance she might not make it through or there could be complications with the delivery. The dam should have a vet exam to make sure they are in a healthy condition to get pregnant, they will need pre and post-natal vitamins and care.
  • A breeder will need to dedicate at least 130 hours to raise an average litter. The mother  should not be left alone during whelping and a few days after. The breeder will also need time for paperwork, caring for the dam, puppies, socialization, and interviewing prospective families for the puppies.
  • The breeder should not be in if for the money, or lack there of. I found a great website that breaks down the cost of the breeding process, take a look here.

To become a reputable breeder I will need to look into each perspective owner that wants a puppy. They will need to fill out a puppy application and sign a puppy agreement form. If for some reason the new owner does not think the puppy fits with their family anymore or they want to sell their puppy, I will be the first person they contact and take the puppy back. I am responsible for these puppies and making sure they have good homes and a incredible life to live.

Would any of you think about breeding, why or why not?