TOUR OF NATURAL DOG TREATS
Treats – like dessert for us humans – aren’t really necessary, but they are a delicious and fun part of the pet’s life. And there are so many types out there that can help in training, but also contribute to their everyday well being. So what are the different types of treats? Here’s a quick Kriser’s rundown.
Training Treats – small but mighty, and highly desirable to your pet! You’ll want to find something that is high value – lots of protein/meat, but are of a size that you can feed in multiples. So that means keeping them to 3-5 calories or pieces of larger treats. Remember the store of Pavlov’s dogs? These are intended to make your pup be good! Take a look at new Plato Small Bites at Kriser’s. These are one of Brad’s new favorites.
Freeze Dried – These are great as training treats, too, often made from a single-source of protein. Freeze drying helps the meat retain its nutrient value so your pet is not getting empty caloric content. Plus they are light and easy to transfer. Grandma Lucy’s or Primal both make great options.
Fruit & Veggie – These are good for pets who need some weight management, but who you still want to reward with a yummy! And they are great for pets with food sensitivities. (And they taste great – Brad even eats them.) Check out options like dried green beans, sweet potatoes, carrots or banana chips, dried for a crunchy texture. The only real difference from the ones you might eat is that yours may have some added sugars for flavor!
Jerky – Dogs love jerky. Period. It’s a fact proved every day with piles of drool. There are a couple of options – whole muscle slices or more composite meats and veggie squishes into a slice, which is sometimes a little less expensive. Be careful not to overfeed jerky, because these products are calorie dense – it’s like giving them a dried steak. And, where possible try to avoid jerky coming out of China.
Biscuits – These “cookies” are great in moderation and are often the most economical. They are great crunch for dogs that like the crunch of a good cookie. When shopping for a biscuit, look for ingredients that are what you’d eat yourself. Limit sugar in general and where they exist, look for honey, cane sugar, and molasses versus sucrose, fructose and dextrose. Whole grains are a plus!
Chews – How aggressive a chewer is your dog? Are they a heavy chewer? Try a bully stick, a dried and stretched bull part. Are they a less aggressive chewer? Perhaps a lamb ear is in order. Want to give you pet a rawhide chew? Look for USA products where possible that are formaldehyde free. Also makes sure your pet is at least six months old for rawhide, since it’s harder to digest. The key with any of these chews is to pick a part that is right-sized for your pet – bigger than their mouth. Always monitor them while they’re chewing and take it away when the chew gets too small. And don’t forget, no cooked bones. They can splinter! Want something alternative to meat? Try a Himalayan Chew – made out of aged yak milk – or a sweet potato like Sam’s Yams.