I still love cats, but I finally switched over to the other side when I got Ellie Bear, a shih tzu/bichon frise mix, for my birthday during my last year of grad school. I was living in Birmingham at the time and wanted a little companion that could travel back and forth with me when I came home. I initially tried to adopt from a shelter because there are so many homeless pets out there in need of a home, but was turned down from shelter after shelter because I was a student who didn't own my own home. Seriously?! As frustrating as that was, I'm so glad that everything worked out and that Ellie was the pup that I ended up finding from a family who lived relatively close to my hometown.
I can honestly say that I love Ellie more than I do some people :-/ I know that sounds terrible, but the love and companionship that she brings is next to none. She's always right there with you, following you from room to room, like a shadow. Pets truly do become part of your family and you love them as such.
The day I brought Ellie home back in 2009.
Of course she had to be in a few wedding shots as well.
This past weekend my family celebrated Ellie Bear's 3rd birthday. Her actual birthday was August 11, but this was the first chance we had to all get together. I already knew I was going to make some banana bread brownies (coming soon!), but I also wanted to make Ellie something that she could eat. This little fluff ball means the world to me, so I wanted something that she would enjoy but that would also be relatively healthy.
These treats were incredibly easy to throw together and I must say that they passed the taste test with flying colors! Ellie, my husband's English bulldog Moe, and his mother's poodle Gin Gin all approved.
I used a doggie bone shaped cookie cutter for these, but you could use any shape you like.
You can cut down the baking time on these for older dogs who need
a softer texture.
She might have had a little help blowing out the candle :)
Homemade Dog Treats adapted from Dog Treat Kitchen
1 medium ripe banana
1 C shredded carrots, chopped*
1/4 C unsweetened applesauce
1/8 C water, plus more if dough is too stiff
1 1/2 C whole wheat flour
1 C rolled oats
*You can buy shredded carrots prepackaged. Use a knife to chop them further so that they blend into the batter better. You could also pulse them a few times in a food processor.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease large baking pan and set aside.
Mash ripe banana in small bowl. Add carrots, applesauce and water. Mix well.
In separate medium bowl combine oats and flour. Make well in dry mixture and add banana/applesauce mixture into the well. Stir until combine and use hands to form dough.
Roll dough to 1/2 inch thick on floured surface. Cut out in desired shaped and place on prepared baking sheet.
Bake 25 minutes (dough will not spread or rise). Cool completely before serving.