With the new year comes new changes. I’ve personally been re-vamping my exercise routine, de-cluttering my apartment (and life in general), trying out more natural beauty recipes, and learning how to cook up some healthier meals. Of course, when you also have two little fuzzballs to take care of, you can’t help but transfer some of your new healthy habits over to them.
One major change I’ve made lately when it comes to taking care of my pets is switching up their diet. For starters, I’ve replaced their store-bought treats for some healthy homemade oat ‘treats’.
Oats offer a long list of health benefits for our pets (and us as well). They are high in protein, soluble fiber, iron, manganese, zinc, and B vitamins, yet low in gluten, starch, and GMOs. They also contain b-sitosterol (an antitumor compound), aid in digestion due to their high fiber content, and help soothe the nervous system.
Combine oats with two simple yet super-beneficial ingredients – banana and coconut oil – and it makes a tasty and healthy treat for dogs and cats (and also hamsters, guinea pigs, humans…the list goes on). Here’s how to make these tasty niblets:
Banana Oat Pet Treats
- 1 ripe/over-ripe banana
- 2 TBS coconut oil
- 1 cup rolled oats (plain 1-minute oatmeal works fine)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine oats, banana, and coconut oil. Mix together with a spoon (smashing down the banana as you go).
- Take about 1 tablespoon of the mixture and form it into a ball. Place on a lightly greased cookie sheet and flatten slightly.
- Place tray into the oven and bake until the edges are golden brown (about 10-15 minutes).
- Let the cookies cool completely.
- Store in airtight container and give out whenever your furry friend has earned a treat!
*Original recipe found on here on Dogvills.com.
Taking things a step further, I’ve even swapped out my pets’ daily meals with Freshpet, an all-natural, refrigerated pet food made with only fresh ingredients (you won’t find any artificial or chemical preservatives, or mysterious fillers like chicken meal in the ingredient’s list). It’s essentially a home-cooked meal for your pet that gives them all the benefits of a fresh diet.
My pets have been more than happy to make the switch too. I can only guess (because I haven’t tried it…yet) that Freshpet tastes amazing, because both of my pets go absolutely crazy as soon as I open the fridge to grab their meal. Harley will look up at me with those wide eyes and almost trip me (by accident I think…) as she circles around my legs. Six-year-old Oliver will jump around with all the energy of an uncontrollable little puppy, and gobble it all up in record time. Needless to say, meal time has turned into quite the exciting event around my apartment!
And just like when us humans make a change to a healthier diet, I’ve already begun to notice the impact it’s having on my pets. Even after just one week, their energy levels have increased, and they’re spending more time playing around and exercising. (And when they’re exercising, I’m exercising too, so it’s a win-win!)
Do you have a furry companion at home? What are your favorites ways to treat and care for them?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.