By B.L. Ochman
Yesterday I bought Benny Bix Ochman Labradoodle Puppy a bag of Charlee Bear Treats and in big letters, in a starburst on the label is the message “Made With All US Ingredients”.
That’s a message you’ll likely be seeing on more and more products from the $35.9 million pet industry. Pet owners are still reeling from the poison Chinese pet food scandal.
Lots of us, including me, are cooking for our pets rather than trusting commercial brands with the health of our furry children. My make your own dog treats recipe is below.
My guess is that you’ll see the US ingredients boast on packages from smaller companies rather than the Purinas of the world. Why? Money of course. Big companies are still going to buy the cheapest source materials they can find. And US laws allow “all-natural” to be interpreted in so many different ways that the phrase is meaningless.
So who can you trust? I’ll start with Charlee Bear. But I also bake for Benny, and the recipe is below. You’ll see how much this vegetarian loves her dog when you see what’s in the recipe.
Smaller companies can build premium brands by touting non-Chinese ingredients. And the smart ones will soon grow their market share with this tactic.
I’ll pay more for that peace of mind and I’m sure I’m not the only pet owner who will.
Toy companies would be wise to follow their lead. Are you listening, Mattel?
Benny Bix Ochman Labradoodle Dog Cookie Recipe
5 pounds ground beef
5 cups wheat germ
5 cups oatmeal flakes
1/2 cup molasses
I usually add a little honey too.
Mush it all up together in a big bowl. Spoon it onto cookie sheets, flatten it out, place and bake at 375 for about 20 minutes or so.
You are basically making meat brownies here. I cut them into squares and freeze them in batches.
I usually add cheese. Be creative. You can alter the recipe anyway you like the most important ingredients are the meat, eggs and oats.
They are high protein and dogs love them. If you don’t have wheat germ you can use whole wheat flour. In fact, not just your dog, but every dog in the neighborhood will follow you home with these in your pocket.
Those meat brownies sound tasty! Have you tried them, B.L.?
Martha – As I said in the post, I’m a vegetarian. But my friend’s husband ate them when she left them in the refrigerator after I gave her dog a bunch for Benny’s birthday.
He asked “where’d we get those delicious cookies.” and she told him “they were dog cookies.” so I guess they taste pretty good.:>)
Thanks for blogging about this. Your posts about Benny Bix are great and building awareness of the dog food issues is important.
In our product selection of foods at FetchDog (www.fetchdog.com), we’ve used only those manufactured in the USA and for which we get full detail on ingredient country of origin. As it should be, country of origin is fully disclosed in the product detail.
There are non-US ingredients in some of our line—like lamb from New Zealand or quinoa from Canada and South America.
The one vexing issue we’re dealing with is taurine—which research says is an important ingredient for large breeds—and so far only available from Chinese sources. In that one product, it is subject to extensive testing before use.
Our diet and nutrition section (http://www.fetchdog.com/learn-connect/dog-resource-library/nutrition-diet/D/300220/P/1:5:55:602) contains lots of good information on food issues, including articles by Sabine Contreras who knows as much about this as anyone.
Our partner Whole Dog Journal is also a fantastic source on food issues. (disclosure–I am a principal of FetchDog.)
Peter – thank you so much for your comment and helpful information.
I am a long-time subscriber to Whole Dog Journal and, after checking out your site, a new fan of yours.
Manufacturers owe it to pet owners to level with us about their products. After all, when our pets stay healthy and live long, we all win.