The fact that dogs have fewer taste buds than us doesn’t mean that they can’t taste delicious food. They respond to bitter, salty, sour, umami, and sweet tastes.
So don’t think you can fool your dogs into thinking that they are eating a delicious treat when in reality it’s unpalatable. They’ll know, and you’ll see the disappointment written all over their faces—followed by a low rumbling growl signifying the feeling of betrayal!
In today’s post, we’re going to share with you some of the recipes that you can use to prepare a dog-friendly “popsicle” for your fur baby. Don’t make the mistake of giving them human treats, as they are usually packed with sugar and additives that are toxic to canines.
Top 10 Dog-Friendly Popsicle Recipes
Important Considerations: You can substitute the stick in each popsicle with a dog treat or offer popsicles without sticks, like flavored ice cubes, or hand feed them to your dog to avoid them ingesting the popsicle’s stick or handle.
1. Chicken Broth Popsicles
Let’s just call this the “chicken brothsicle” recipe because the name sounds more appropriate. And as you might have guessed, the main ingredients are shreadded chicken and broth. We prefer the homemade broth to the commercial option, seeing as sometimes the store-bought broth is high in sodium. Simply shred some chicken breast, cook it in a broth, and freeze it for your pooch.
Nonetheless, this is an incredible option for any dog owner who wishes to avoid dealing with issues related to dehydration on a hot summer afternoon.
According to vets, your dog’s daily water intake is supposed to be an ounce per body weight. That’s to say, an 80-pound Labrador Retriever will require 2½ quarts per day, depending on the weather and level of activity.
2. Beef Popsicles
An experienced dog owner will attest to the fact that dogs have different tastes and preferences. Some like sweet treats while others gravitate more toward the savory kind. If your dog falls in the latter category, these are the type of popsicles that you should be offering them.
Like the chicken recipe, simply boil up some small cuts of beef in a pot, and freeze them for your pooch to enjoy.
3. Strawberry Popsicles
Strawberries are one of the healthiest fruits for both humans and dogs. Besides the fact that they contain enzymes that help whiten the dog’s teeth, they also provide vitamin C antioxidants that help protect their cells and repair damaged tissues.
Chop up some fresh strawberries, freeze them with water, and serve to your pup frozen.
4. Yogurt-dipped Frozen Fruit Popsicle
If you’re going to make some homemade popsicles for your dog using yogurt, it should be the plain variety. Dogs usually react negatively to added sweeteners, even if they are natural.
The upside to offering your dog some yogurt-dipped-frozen-fruit popsicles is that they get to supplement their diets with protein and calcium.
Use the same strawberry recipe above, but replace the water with yogurt.
5. Kiwi Coconut Popsicles
We’ve always known kiwi as a tasty fruit that often promises to deliver an abundance of nutritious benefits whenever it’s added to any meal.
They are usually loaded with potassium minerals and contain more antioxidants than oranges. When coupled with coconut, the popsicle ends up offering a wide range of health benefits, seeing as your dog will also be consuming a fruit that serves healthy fats, and electrolytes. Simply freeze chopped fresh kiwi fruit with some sliced coconut and water.
6. Molasses Pops
Molasses is the viscous, dark syrup produced while refining sugar beets or sugarcane. Contrary to popular belief, this substance is more nutritious than sugar, as it’s naturally rich in minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium, and iron, as well as antioxidants. There’s also more than enough evidence to support the fact that it aids in the management of anemia and supports bone health.
If you’re going to serve your dog some popsicles made of this ingredient, serve it in moderation. Excessive consumption can cause diabetes, obesity, stomach upsets, or dental damage.
7. Banana Bites
To make these bites even more delicious, coat the banana slices with peanut butter. It’s no surprise that many pet owners love using bananas to prepare treats for their dogs since this low-calorie fruit contains more than enough copper, fiber, biotin, vitamins, and potassium, to cater to our furry friend’s daily nutritional requirements.
Make sure the peanut butter doesn’t contain Xylitol or any other sweetener that’s toxic to dogs. Xylitol can irreparably damage their vital body organs, such as the liver, so avoid it at all costs.
8. Watermelon Popsicles
Packed with magnesium and potassium, watermelon dog treats have always been considered a healthy option for anyone looking for low-calorie popsicles that are easy to make. You’re guaranteed that this fruit will help your dog stay hydrated, as it’s filled with fluids that are rich in vitamins A and C.
Simply slice the watermelon into small cubes and freeze them for a delicious cold pupsicle.
9. Mango Sorbet
Mango sorbet is a great option for those who own dogs that are lactose intolerant. Mango is high in fiber, antioxidants, and several other minerals. While working in tandem, they’ll boost your dog’s immunity, maintain their heart health, and mitigate the risk of developing various chronic diseases.
Blend some sliced mango with water, freeze, and serve to your pooch.
10. Layered Popsicles
If you’re planning to have a party of some sort, these are the kind of popsicles that will complement its general theme. They are often aesthetically appealing and layered using different colored ingredients. You can make a two-, three-, four-, or even five-layered popsicle if you have the time. If you’d like the layers to be sharply defined, you’ll have to freeze the blended mixtures at different intervals.
For example, let’s assume we’re trying to make a two-layered popsicle. We’ll fill up the pop-mold cup with the kiwi mixture above, and freeze it for 30 minutes to make it firmer, before adding the mango sorbet.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Are Frozen Treats Safe for Dogs?
Dogs don’t usually regulate their bodies the same way humans or other animals do. They do so through panting, which is a moderate to rapid open-mouth respiration. This natural activity also helps them get oxygen into their bloodstream when cool air passes over the lungs.
Dogs love consuming frozen foods. And it’s okay to serve them some, as long as the ingredients used to prepare the said food are dog friendly. Other than ensuring your dog gets the much-needed hydration, popsicles often help them cool down faster.
Is Greek Yogurt Considered a Dog-Friendly Ingredient?
Yes, Greek yogurt is a healthy and safe treat option, if it’s Xylitol-free. We normally like to use plain yogurt while preparing yogurt pupsicles, but given the choice, we’d rather work with a protein-rich variant that also contains calcium and probiotics. Calcium is important in maintaining bone health, while probiotics promote the absorption of nutrients by the body and gut health. Of course, moderation is key.
Can My Dog Eat Pedialyte Popsicles?
No, unless required by your veterinarian, please don’t give your dog anything that has Pedialyte in it. That oral electrolyte solution is only meant for human consumption, and that’s why the sodium levels in it are higher than the recommended level for dogs. Pedialyte also has a lot of sugar, meaning it has negative effects on diabetic dogs and dogs that are overweight.
Dogs love popsicles as much as we do, but we just can’t share our commercially produced treats because they contain lots of sugar, additives, and several other ingredients that are unsafe for canine consumption. If you’d like your pooch to cool down faster on a hot summer afternoon while enjoying their favorite treats, get acquainted with any one of these recipes.
Featured Image Credit: Merrimon Crawford, Shutterstock