Recipes for You and Your Pet

My dog Preston was recently diagnosed with allergies. He had been itching for a while, but when he started pulling his hair out I knew it was time to have the vet run some tests. Unfortunately, we found out he is pretty much allergic to the outside world … and some certain foods. This left us with the difficult task of finding foods and treats that he wasn’t allergic to but would still eat. Since Preston is very picky, this proved to be quite challenging. I did what many people would do – I turned to the Internet for help. Luckily, the people in our online Dogster community were very helpful and suggested I try cooking for him. The first thing I thought was that I barely cook for myself, now I was going to cook for my dog? It sounded crazy! After doing some research, I quickly realized that with a few simple changes I could cook for my dog and myself at almost the same time!

Does this sound like something you would like to try? If so, before you start making your pup a second plate of that dinner you cooked, there are a few ingredients you need to know about that should never be given to your dog or cat.

The following ingredients can be deadly:

  • Seeds from fruits
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee
  • Garlic
  • Grapes and Raisins
  • Hops
  • Macadamia Nuts
  • Onions
  • Mushrooms
  • Walnuts
  • Xylitol
  • Yeast Dough

I learned that it is important to always buy “human-grade” meat, not “feed” grade. This means you should purchase any meat you plan to use for your pets at a human grocery store, not a feed shop. Also, always make sure to take proper handling precautions when handling raw meat. While dogs and cats may not be able to get salmonella, we can, so it is very important for your health and safety.

One last thing to consider is storage. Homemade food and treats will not stay good very long since they don’t have the preservatives found in commercial store-bought products. If you don’t plan on feeding the rest to your pup in the next couple of days then you should freeze any leftovers.

Below is Preston’s favorite dog treat recipe – Doggie Pumpkin Squares – for you to try out the next time you are in the kitchen. Also, with a few extra ingredients you can whip up some Pumpkin Cream Cheese Squares as dessert for yourself at the same time!

Doggie Pumpkin Squares


  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 Tablespoons smooth peanut butter
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mix together the eggs, flour, pumpkin, smooth peanut butter, cinnamon, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  3. To make the dough knead-able, add water as needed.
  4. Roll the dough out and cut to your desired size and shape
  5. Bake for about 30 minutes or until hardened.
  6. Let cool, then serve to your pup!


Pumpkin Cream Cheese Squares



  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  • 8 ounces cream cheese (room temperature)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Using a whisk, beat the eggs and gradually add in the sugar.
  3. Blend in the remaining ingredients.
  4. Spread onto a greased, wax-papered jelly roll pan.
  5. Bake fifteen minutes at 350 degrees F.
  6. Once cool, cut cake into desired shapes.
  7. Filling: Blend all filling ingredients thoroughly.
  8. Place filling in between two pieces of the pumpkin cake.
  9. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving.
  10. Enjoy!

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