Pumpkin dog treat recipes are always a hit with my boys, and I love knowing that those goodies they're scarfing down are packed with healthy, nutritious ingredients.
Fresh pumpkin flesh has a mild, sweet flavor, is nutrient dense, fiber rich, and low in calories. It's rich in vitamins A , C and E as well as being a good source of calcium, iron, zinc and potassium. Pumpkin seeds are also packed full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and beneficial fatty acids.
That's a whole lot of goodness in one fat, orange vegetable!
I always use fresh pumpkin, homemade pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin puree (not the pie filling variety which contains sugar and other ingredients) in my pumpkin dog treat recipes.
Never use a pumpkin which has been sitting around as part of your Fall decorations as these have time to grow bacteria and mold which can be dangerous to your dog!
Fresh pumpkin can be used raw or cooked (either steamed, baked, boiled or roasted). When feeding pumpkin seeds, it's important to clean and cook (roasting is quick and easy) first. Don't feed them raw.
Pumpkin is so versatile it can be used in conjunction with a whole host of other ingredients and in both sweet and savory dog treats. Pumpkin seeds can be ground or used whole. I hope you and your dog enjoy these recipes as much as we do.
Because pumpkin is so versatile there are other ways to add it to your dog's diet in addition to directly in his meals, or baked treats.
You can make delicious frozen dog treats by adding mashed or pureed pumpkin to either melted coconut oil, natural yogurt, almond milk or bone broth and then freezing them in silicone molds or ice cube trays.
Get creative and add other ingredients like mashed banana, peanut or almond butter, pureed strawberries, blueberries, or baby food.... mix and match flavors to suit your dog's individual taste. For more ideas and tips on making frozen dog treats check out THIS PAGE.
You can also roast chunks of fresh pumpkin to offer as treats or add to your dog's meals, or use a dehydrator to make healthy, chewy and nutritious long lasting treats.