Pumpkin spice and everything nice…isn’t that the way the saying goes? Or is it sugar and spice and everything nice? Either way, these Organic Pumpkin Spice Cookies for Dogs were mandatory because things have not been so nice over here in Cavalier King Charles Spaniel kingdom.
It started two weeks ago when Stella struggled to get up from a nap, then limped and wouldn’t put pressure on her rear back leg. She was holding it up and hobbling around. At first, I thought maybe it had fallen asleep and it just need to get some blood flowing. Happens to me all the time.
She got it moving and things seemed fine.
And then it happened the next day. Twice. Suddenly, she seemed to have something wrong with that rear leg.
Checked her paws to make sure there was nothing lodged. Bent her knee to make sure she didn’t yelp in pain. Nothing.
Off to the vet we went, thinking maybe she had a little sprain.
X-rays and a further test for hip dysplasia while sedated revealed that my poor little Stella Bean does in fact have hip dysplasia. And while not the end of the world, and while not a candidate for surgery without first trying to medically treat it, I was so upset.
Who wants to give their dog pain medication “indefinitely”?
But we trudged forward adopting this new routine of daily joint supplements and pain meds.
- 1 cup oat flour
- 1 cup brown rice flour
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 egg
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- ¾ cup canned pumpkin (organic or fresh, pureed pumpkin)
- up to ½ cup water
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Combine all ingredients (minus the water) together. Add the water slowly, a little at a time until a dough forms. (If the dough is too dry, add more water, too wet add more flour). * You may not need to add the full ½ cup of water. I live where it's super humid and needed about ¼ cup.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, or a non stick baking mat and drop by rounded tablespoons onto the cookie tray, or you can be fancy and roll them into balls, flatten and make a paw print imprint.
- Unlike human cookies, these cookies aren't going to rise or flatten.
- Bake for 18-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container or in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Tucker (my most recent rescue) shrieked in pain hopping off the upholstered bench coming down from the bed Saturday morning. Refusing to bear weight on his hind leg, I thought holy crap, another dog with hip issues?! And while hip dysplasia is not super common in small dogs, and it’s not like Tucker & Stella are related- that was my first worry.
On Sunday, I monitored the situation but knew we’d be heading to the vet first thing Monday morning when he had two episodes of screaming in pain for apparently no reason.
My Tucker Bear slipped a disc, pinched a nerve and is at the mercy of Degenerative Disc Disease.
He’s 8 (or so the best guesstimate indicates since he was dumped at a shelter and have no idea for certain), so while not entirely as much of a shock as Stella’s hips- it has wrecked havoc on our world.
He was in doggy ICU for 3 days last week. Came home on Wednesday evening and on Thursday morning I was back at the vet’s office for additional meds to help with his poop situation. Friday resulted in a phone call that I just didn’t think the oral medications were working. Saturday trip for another observation, and sure enough, he wasn’t responding to the oral steroids. Updated plan of medications, and the addition of more pain medication prescribed.
He’s been better this weekend, highly medicated, and still stiff when needing to walk to go potty but he seems to be responding a bit better. He’s on absolute crate rest, and because he panics being confined, I’m writing this now, on the floor in our living room pillow fort. We start laser therapy this afternoon and I’m crossing fingers and everyone’s paws that it helps him find some relief.
Murphy and Milo are happily at day care so I can run what I’ve jokingly referred to as the Broussard Rehabilitation Resort for Stella and Tucker.
Administering meds all day long, and keeping my two frail snails calm and quiet.
With all the medications Tucker is on, I wanted to make a treat he could enjoy but that would include pumpkin to aid in some of the digestion issues he’s having. These Pumpkin Spice Cookies for Dogs are perfect for including your pets in something deliciously pumpkin spice, too!
Despite his pain, he’s still eager to snack so I want to keep him as happy as I can.
A couple of notes when making the dog treats.
I have small dogs, and weight management is always a concern for us. I made them heaping 1/2 teaspoon size balls and flattened them out a bit. Use a knuckle for the bottom and the end of a lollipop stick to make the paw imprints.
For a softer treat, they were probably done in about 15 minutes. I wanted them crunchier to last a bit longer, so baked them for about 20 minutes.
Homemade dog treats are not going to last long at all, due to the lack of preservatives. Baking them crunchier (they will only look burnt) will buy you a couple more days than a soft cookie will.
You’re still going to want to store them in an airtight container and toss after about a week, or when you start seeing mold.
I have so many dang dogs that we go through a batch before that ever happens, and since Murph & Milo are doing daily daycare I’m sending them with a jar to share with their fur-iends.
It helps extend a thank you to the staff taking such great care of them during the day.
Here’s hoping your week is going better than mine!
Another pumpkin recipe for dogs you might enjoy: Pumpkin & Brown Rice Flour Dog Treats