Friday Fun: Frozen Summer Cooler Snack

Now that warmer weather is here, all of us are looking for great ways to keep our dogs cool!  Air conditioning can certainly help, but with the 4th of July coming up….there will be family gatherings and trips to the park and lake, backyard barbeques, and that sort of thing.  All of us enjoy summer fun, but the warm temperatures can be downright dangerous for our furry friends, and we need to consider that when we plan our outside events.

There are so many great things that you can do to help cool your dogs, and today, I’m going to give you a great frozen snack idea that can be used at home or easily transported to anywhere you like.  It’s easy to make and not expensive!  And best of all, you know what goes into it, so you can feel really good about giving this to your dog.

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The ingredients can include anything you’ve got leftover in your fridge that are safe for your dog to eat!  Here are some ideas for you…bananas, cheese, apples, peaches, strawberries, blueberries, carrots, broccoli, green beans, etc.  I used some strawberries that were just a bit over-ripe, and they worked great for this recipe!

I started with a base of chicken broth.   You can use beef broth or even vegetable broth as the base if you prefer.  I typically try to get lower sodium recipes when it’s available, and if it’s not available, I just dilute the broth with some water.  For the recipe I made today, I used 1 cup of water and 3/4 cup of broth.  If you like, you can bypass the broth altogether and just use water.

When I’m thinking of the container to use for freezing, I always consider how long Rugby will be out and about.  There are many choices available that will work:  a dog dish of varying sizes, empty milk or juice jugs with their tops cut off, empty water bottles with their tops cut off,  or ice cube trays, etc. to freeze your treats in.

A clean bucket will also work if you will have multiple dogs in attendance.  For larger containers, I start with a water base rather than a broth base, and add fruits and veggies to that.  When I’m using a large container, I like to make a frozen parfait.  I start with a small amount of water, toss in the fruits and veggies that I’m using, and freeze it.  When it’s frozen, I add a few more fruits and veggies, and more water and freeze again.  I repeat this until my container is full.  That way, there will be fruits and veggies frozen all throughout the ice chunk, to provide continued fun for your dog.

I just wanted to make something small for some everyday backyard fun, so I used ice cube trays for this blog.  But, if you needed something larger, you really could freeze broth ice cubes, and then once they are frozen, add them into your larger container of water to freeze in your parfait creation.

 

I mixed the water and chicken broth and then filled an ice cube tray with the mixture.  I had already cut up some strawberries, so I added those to the ice cube tray, and popped it in the freezer for the day.  Once they are frozen solid, you can pop them out and save them in a closed container in your freezer to dole out as you like.

If you are using larger containers, you can easily transport your frozen treat to your event in the container, and pop it out once you arrive. Larger containers  provide a frozen ice lick for your dog, or a nice cold teething treat for a growing puppy.  The colorful fruit and veggies which are frozen inside will be an added surprise for your dog to nibble as they work down to them.

The sky is the limit to what you can create, and it’s a great way to use up excess dog safe fruit and veggies that you have on hand.  Rugby approves!!

 

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