★Helping you and your pets live healthier, longer lives★ by Dr. Margo Hunt
Yesterday morning I decided to give my cats a treat…. you see, they rarely have treats because Sapphire (on the right) has a million food allergies, so she can’t have commercial cat treats. Scarlet (the tuxie) doesn’t have any allergies, but, as any mama knows, you can’t give one baby a treat without giving each some…. so they usually just get their “food” food…. and not other things.
So, I went to the internet for some great cat treat recipes, but I didn’t find any that wouldn’t trigger Sapphire’s allergies, so I decided to combine what I know of nutrition, cats, and cooking, and give it a try. I am no Pioneer Woman in the kitchen, but I figured, “why not?”
I went through the pantry and grabbed a little of this and a little of that…. and I laid out my ingredients:
Parsley, organic egg, duck-pea canned food, IsaPro*. I immediately got “help” from Sapphire.
The recipes I had been reviewing online called for flour of one kind or another. But, since cats are carnivores, it didn’t make much sense to add extra carbs to the mix. Healthy cats thrive on high-protein diets, so I opted to add IsaPro as the thickening agent and sneak some extra protein into their treats as well.
(*IsaPro is a premium un-denatured whey protein powder that people use, and is great for use in pets as well, to add additional protein to a diet. If you don’t have this exact product, you can purchase it here (or message me on my fb page and I’ll help you place an order). Please do not substitute a different brand of protein powder, as the other brands could potentially harm your pet. Instead, you could substitute 1-2 Tbsp of organic rice flour to help thicken the mix if needed.)
Next, I combined everything in a bowl and stirred until combined. (I also added some coconut oil here, but forgot to get a picture, you’ll imagine it, won’t you?) Healthy fats are essential to metabolism, skin and coat health as well as nerve and brain function. The egg and coconut oil are healthy ways to add these fatty acids to your pet’s diet.
Then, just spread it around on a cookie sheet until the goo is about 1/3″ thick and roughly in a rectangle. It’s a good thing my kids weren’t here to comment on my rectangle-approximating skills… and the cats will not care.
Baked it for 15 minutes at 325-degrees F, then sliced it into small 3/4″ x 3/4″ pieces using my favorite utensil, a plastic pizza wheel that won’t scratch pans. What’s more fun than having kitchen gadgets? I digress…
Once the giant treat was cut into smaller pieces, I returned the cut portions back onto the cookie sheet, flipping them over in the process, and baked for an additional 5 minutes. This let them get a little toasty on the opposite side as well.
When they were finished, (and my whole kitchen smelled of cat food), I piled them on a plate….. gotta say, they didn’t look tasty to me! But, that is a common misconception in cat food and treats. Commercial companies actually use dyes, colors, and special shapes to make a pet food or treat look appealing to us. When, in actuality, the dyes/colors are bad for our pets…. just like they are for us. Do not think that just because it is approved for human consumption that it is beneficial to your pet.
Toxin exposure is a concern for us and our pets.
By avoiding dyes/colors/additives, you will set your pet up for success and a longer, healthier life.
Scarlet and Sapphire loved my creation! They each grabbed one and ran off, to eat their prize in solitude (cats are funny that way…. future post to explain that!). But, they kept coming back for more, so eventually I got a picture. Yummy!!
And now they’re stalking me as I wouldn’t give them the whole pile of treats!! So, I’m considering this a success!
Thanks for following my first adventure in Cat Baking. I’d love to hear how your cats (or dogs) liked these treats. You can quite easily substitute dog food for the cat food and make your pooch a happy dog! See the full recipe below.
To your health~
Margo Hunt, D.V.M.
© 2013 Margo Hunt, D.V.M.