For your dog’s well-being, nutrition and diet is the key. But how will you know if the food you are giving has the best nutritional value? With varieties of dog foods available in the market, it is hard to find the option that is apt for your pet’s needs and matches your lifestyle.
Another option that has recently gained popularity and is in demand among pet parents is dehydrated dog foods. Busy pet owners often select this option to offer their dogs high-quality meals without giving up nutrition.
Not heard of dehydrated dog treats yet? You are not alone if you have never encountered the term dehydrated dog treats. This type of food has been on the market for many years, but recently it has gained enormous attention from pet parents. Let us first learn.
What are dehydrated dog treats?
Dehydrated dog treats are a healthier alternative to processed food treats. These food treats are nothing; but meat, fruits, and vegetable from which the moisture has been removed; through a cooking procedure.
Meats are the most popular dehydrated dog treat item compared to fruits. You can dehydrate all meat types- chicken, turkey, ground beef, and organs like liver or gizzard. The nutrients present in the raw meat can be kept intact through the procedure.
Applying low heat, you need to dry the ingredients slowly to remove the pathogens. As you apply heat to the ingredients, it is no longer raw. Therefore, while serving the treat, you can add hot water to rehydrate it. Some pet parents even add broth to make it tasty and healthy.
Why do pet owners include dehydrated foods in their dogs’ diets?
There are several reasons why many pet parents prefer dehydrated foods for their dogs. These are:
Dehydrated foods have much more nutrition than many other heavily processed food varieties. Since dehydrated foods slow down the process and low temperatures are used, most nutritional values remain intact. Only the moisture from the food is removed gradually.
Once rehydrated, it will provide the same benefits as fresh foods, better than that, as all the harmful chemicals, by-products, or preservatives are removed in the dehydration process.
These foods are easier to digest and do not contain any fillers, preservatives, or by-products. Hence, dogs with digestive issues can easily consume them.
Easy to prepare
The dog treats recipes are simple and takes minimum time to make. Wash, peel, and arrange the ingredients on the tray or baking dish. Put it in the oven or the dehydrator. Fix the temperature and walk away. After the stipulated time, the treat is ready to be stored or eaten.
Longer shelf life
One of the main reasons why pet owners choose highly processed store-bought food for their dogs is for their convenience. It can stay good for longer, and no effort is required. You need to fill up your pet’s bowl with it. The food can be stored anywhere. There is no need to refrigerate.
Dehydrated foods have a much longer shelf life than processed store-bought varieties. The dehydrated foods also take up much lesser space as these can be stored in compressed boxes.
The only thing you have to do with dehydrated foods is to add hot water every time you serve the food to your dog. Since you are adding water, a small quantity of dehydrated food can last a long.
Convenient to carry on a trip
If you love traveling and you leave behind your canine friend, thinking you will not be able to provide the right amount of nutrition on the go, dehydrated foods can be an excellent option. It will take up minimum space in your luggage, and carrying it in lesser quantities will also last many days. You need to add water, and a healthy and tasty meal is ready anytime and anywhere.
Are dehydrated dog treats beneficial for your dog?
We have already mentioned that dehydrated dog treats are nutritious, convenient, cost-effective, and have a longer shelf life. So, if you are looking for a pet food option with all these benefits, dehydrated dog foods can be an ideal choice. But it is always best to consult your dog’s vet before making any dietary changes.
Can dehydrated dog treats be homemade?
Making the best-dehydrated dog treats at home is simple. You will need a regular oven or a dehydrator and the ingredient. The variety of ingredients that you can dehydrate is huge. Most dog-safe foods like fruits, vegetables, fish, and meat work great.
When you are dehydrating meat, make sure all the skin and fat are removed from the meat.
With them, the dehydration process becomes lengthy and difficult. You can marinate the meat with dog-friendly herbs before the process. Low-fat sausages also make tasty and chewy dog treats when dehydrated.
The veggies that can be dehydrated are as follows:
- Bell peppers
- Green beans
- Sweet potatoes
The fruits that you can dehydrate are:
Fruits and veggies that contain too much water or are small in size cannot be dehydrated.
The best meat that you can dehydrate are the following:
- Lean beef
- Organ meat like hearts, livers, and kidneys
To completely dehydrate most of the meats take around 8-10 hours.
How will you know that dehydration is complete?
The best way to understand if your dehydrated treats are ready is by looks. They should look completely moisture free and crispy. If unsure, cut one of the treats, preferably a thick slice, and check if it is cooked. You may have to adjust the time and keep it dry completely.
Read Also: Signs Your Dog Is Dehydrated
How can you store homemade dog treats?
Dehydrated dog treats can be kept fresh for the longest time. After you are done with the dehydration process, you can store the treats in an airtight container. It can be a glass, plastic container, or zip lock pouch.
If you are considering using the treatment for more than a month, keeping them in the refrigerator is good. Otherwise, store them in an airtight container in a cool and dry place.
Dehydration help preserve the nutrients and increases the shelf life of food items. The procedure helps remove any germs or pathogens usually present in raw meat.
There are innumerable dehydrated dog treat recipes that you will get to see over the internet. These recipes give you a clear idea of how you will slice the ingredients and how long you need to dehydrate that.