Agility Classes

Ben and Woody do agility. I am new to the agility world and will share things I learn and about trials!

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Strawberry Banana Peanut Butter Smoothie Treats

Because Benny has such strange allergies, and I tend to buy fruit that I can’t finish, I started making my own dog treats. 1. I know exactly what is in them and can eliminate things I think Benny is allergic to. 2. I don’t waste as much fruit or yogurt because the boys help eat it! 3. At one point Benny was on a food trial and was eating a Kangaroo based food. To make him treats, I had to literally crush the food, add some water and bake it. Have you ever baked Kangaroo dog food? It smells disgusting. Don’t do it. Also, It’s cheaper for me and they are pretty tasty!

What you need:

2 cups strawberries

1/8 cup plain low fat yogurt

1/2 banana

1 big spoon of peanut butter

1 squirt of local honey (gives it a sweet taste)

1 cup + of oat flour (or any type of flour just watch the consistency of the smoothie)

Steps:

  1. Blend everything but the oat flour. You can use any fruit combination but sometimes citrus fruits may upset dog’s tummys. Sometimes they don’t. I also add a little water if the smoothie won’t blend. I worked at Planet Smoothie for awhile and picked that little trick up. TIP: **PLEASE read the label of your peanut butter. Many companies are using xylitol now because it make the PB less caloric. This is toxic to dogs. It’s what’s in sugar free gum. I use the self serve station at the grocery store where you literally just press a button and it crushes the peanuts. No salt or sugar added. 
  2. Taste the now smoothie for flavor. I may add some extra PB if I think it’s too strawberry tasting or banana tasting. Sometimes I add extra honey. Whatever tastes good. Let’s be real, everything will be good to the dogs.
  3. Pour the smoothie into a mixing bowl.
  4. Make oat flour by taking oatmeal and blending it (separately). This is the cheaper way. You can use any style of oatmeal to make oat flour. Alternatively, you can buy oat flour for a premium.
  5. Start with about a cup of oat flour and pour it in the mixing bowl with the smoothie. Using a SPOON, gently stir in the oat flour. TIP: **Sometimes I need more oat flour than other times. I think this is due to the type of strawberries I use.Currently, I use frozen strawberries because it’s cold out and fresh ones are more expensive.**
  6. Once your mixture seems like it could hold a circular shape on a cookie tray, you can stop adding oat flour and start making circle shaped treats on the pan. Mine generally hold a circle like shape with little running on the tray. It may take a few times to get a feel for your mixtures but even if they run together a little, they break apart nicely in the end. See the picture below.
  7. Bake for ten to fifteen minutes and then flip the treats over. Again, sometimes they need a little more bake time on each side dependent on how thick your smoothie is. My rule of thumb is that they should be a little brown on the pan-side-down side prior to flipping. They also should flip with your fingers or with a gentle nudge from a flipper tool. Bake on the other side for an additional ten to fifteen minutes.
  8. Go ahead, taste one. They are not that bad 😉

Pictures are worth a thousand words:

 

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In case you noticed, on the finished tray there are a few less than on the pre-bake tray. I actually had enough batter to make a few extra so when i flipped them over I transferred a few to the smaller tray that wasn’t full. For me, I know that if my consistency is perfect I should make exactly 7 rows of five  on my tray. So this batter pictured should have had a little more oat flour added. But they still came out just fine. The thinner the batter the easier it is to burn them. Enjoy!

What’s for dinner?


Hi! I’ve been racking my brain about what my first post should be. So I thought about what people ask me the most about and came up with dinner. Not about what we feed the boys so much but how we feed the boys. It’s a process and when I dog sit for “normal” dogs who get to eat out of a “normal” bowl and get a classic “scoop” I bask in the moments of simplicity.

We use cupcake tins. All four have their own but recently we upgraded Ben and Riley to toys for dinner but more on that later. Cupcake tins are great. You put a little in each spot and it slows down the intake so they don’t choke. You could buy pacer balls or put down five mini bowls but this does the trick.

We have dinner toys as well. It started with Ben because he is so puppy like that we wanted to exhaust him. We have the Kong Wobble, a ball, a teeter totter, and a spin disc for Ben. These are pretty basic– they role the toy, or hit the toy in such a way that a kernel of food pops out. It’s also hilarious. The teeter totter made by Toys R Us is not my favorite because he doesn’t really seem to “teeter totter” it. Also Ben eats in the bath tub because I don’t want his food flying all over the place into another dogs territory or fall into a place where another dog may find it later and they have an argument. I’ve been considering getting him a play pen to be honest.

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Riley has this toy that looks like grass. You spread the food out and he has to use his nose and tongue to work it through to get it out. I knew with Riley being a little OCD and crazy that he would not be a candidate for toys that required a lot of focus, or physical movement with his hands. Because he is a terrier he gets very set on things and I just knew that if it wasn’t easy enough for him to “win” he would become more frustrated and high strung. This puzzle is nice because he can see his progress. riley

So what’s with the two regular bowls? The boys also receive fish oil, bananas/other fruit, and local honey every night. So because of the toys we can’t just top their food so they have it a la carte.

Local honey is really good for dogs with allergies. If you think about it, the dog is simply ingesting the local pollen that are causing their itchiness. They begin to build a tolerance for the pollen because of this. A lot of humans actually eat local honey too!

They also get Nature’s Logic fish oil. It’s really good for their skin and helps keep skin healthy. Ben gets two fish oils because he has such bad skin. Having both gives him different levels of Omegas and I have seen a small amount of improvement. Ben is the only one who gets this fish oil because it is a bit more expensive.

On my Products I Use page I link you to the food I use. We feed 3 dogs Orijen fish blend. It’s expensive but with the allergies, it saves us a lot on vet bills! Peter eats California Natural and it is a pretty great food as well!

One thing I’ve learned about dog food is that you should always be skeptical of the bag’s suggested serving amount. They want you to buy food more often and thus they may suggest a higher serving amount. I always use the “less active” amount as a starting point and adjust from there. Feeding amounts can change during different seasons as well so make sure to watch your dog’s body! If you do any mix ins take that into account as well and reduce the dry food!

We also have pill time at dinner. Woody and Benny get an antihistamine(morning and night). Riley gets  Prozac (in the morning he takes Clonidine to help with the crazy), and Peter gets Dasuquin which is a joint medication.

 

So there we have it. My first blog. Dinnertakes some time but it’s worth the 5 minutes they aren’t following me around at night!