It’s the middle of July, and as we brace ourselves for the next heat wave, I’m thinking of ways to keep my pup cool, too. The evening news features footage of zookeepers serving frozen treats to captive animals – from frozen bananas and fruit juice to whole frozen fish and bloodcicles (awesome if you’re a tiger, I suppose) none of the animals deny a frozen treat for a few minutes of relief from these oppressive temperatures. So, what can we offer our pets at home?
- Start with a clean container that you can fit into your freezer. You can use anything from ice cube trays to plastic jugs, rubber toys (kongs work great) – muffin tins and popsicle forms also work great.
- Next formulate your mixture. It can be as simple as natural or low sodium chicken or beef broth, peanut butter & oatmeal, non-fat plain yogurt, lactose-free milk or cottage cheese.
- Fill the container of your choice.
- For and extra special treat add some kibble, training treats or even some cooked lean meat. Most dogs have a taste for fruits and veggies, too. Add sliced, chopped or pureed bananas, apples, pumpkin, sweet potato, carrot parsley or pineapple.
- Pop them into the freezer.
- Insert a bully stick or jerky strip when the treats are half frozen to make it a true pupsicle.
- Put back into the freezer until frozen.
- Serve to your pup! Frozen treats should be served outside to save you the melting mess inside.
If creativity and food prep isn’t your thing, we have options for you too.
- Plain ice cubes or crushed ice can be a refreshing addition to the water bowl.
- Frozen marrow bones.
- Many companied, like Frosty Paws, are now creating doggie “ice cream” that’s ready to serve in portioned cups. You can often find these or similar products in many pet stores and even in some grocer’s freezers.
Next time you sip a shake or smoothie, be sure to have a frosty treat ready for your four pawed friend, too, you may be surprise how much they appreciate it!