Dogs can benefit from the vitamins in juices too
Did you know that dogs can benefit from the vitamins and minerals packed in fresh fruits and vegetables? This recipe from a doggy bakery owner will provide energy and nutrition in a natural way
By Alex Kennedy
I recently got into juicing and am in fact in the process of doing a 5 day detox (so am surrounded by fruit and veg) So why am I doing it? Well, one to improve my health – sometimes your mojo disappears and you need something to bring it back into line again. Also it’s a natural way of being energized and it helps you lose a bit of weight. It’s a win-win situation.
However something total unexpected happened the other day when I was preparing a juice. I was putting the produce into my juicer and my dog Amber came over looking interested. Given that she loves food it didn’t surprise me very much. Once I had juiced everything and sat down to drink it she was still interested so I let her have a finger-full. To say she liked it would be the understatement of the year.
So I thought about creating a recipe that you could make for both yourself and your dog to enjoy together. The recipe below is a mixture of sweet and sour and is packed full of minerals and vitamins. Unlike artificial juices, which will give you and your dog a roller coaster of a ride on refined sugars, this juice will provide energy and nutrition in a very natural way.
The Green Energizer
you may have to double up if you want to make one for you and your dog.
¼ medium pineapple (I remove the skin and cut it into medium pieces)
1 large handful of spinach (see tips section)
¼ medium cucumber
½ medium courgette/zucchini
1 medium carrot
15 sugar snap peas
1 small handful ice cubes (for the human version, not the dogs)
Tips for preparing and juicing
Get the right juicer – There are lots of juicers on the market and it’s difficult to tell which one is the best. The juicer I use is a fusion type which has a low induction motor, meaning you get more and better quality juice. There are a number of other types out there so if you haven’t got one at the moment then I suggest you do a bit of research to see which one will suit you best. Here’s one that is similar to Alex’s on Amazon: Jason Vale Fusion Juicer – Centrifugal Juice Extractor with Bonus Booster Blender, Black
Remove the seeds from the fruit and veg if you are juicing for your dog. This is particularly important in the case for apples. Whilst many dogs love apples, which is great, as they contain calcium, vitamin K, vitamin C, and pectin (soluble fibre) the seeds and stems in fresh apples contain cyanogenic glycosides which can cause tummy upset and more serious problems if consumed in large quantities.
Juicing leaf vegetables (spinach, kale etc.) To get the best amount of juice from a leaf veg roll it gently into to a ball and then when putting it into the juicer wedge it between two harder pieces of fruit.
Can I grow these ingredients in my garden?
Yes you can grow all of them bar the pineapple (not unless you live in a sunny climate).
Things that might surprise you about the ingredients
Pineapple contains calcium and potassium. Frozen pineapple, in small quantities, can be a fun summer treat for your dog. It can also help in stopping your dog eating its own poop – not very pleasant.
Spinach contains vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B, vitamin K, beta-carotene and plant crude fibre, which can promote gastrointestinal peristalsis and improve defecation. Vitamin C and vitamin K can promote healthy bones for dogs. If you have an anaemic dog, feeding spinach may be more helpful, because spinach is rich in foliate and iron, which can improve blood circulation and treat anaemia.
Cucumber provides a good low calorie filler with meals and an excellent treat.
Courgette (zucchini) is actually great as it is low in fat, and has many nutrients, it is a great food to give to dogs.
Carrots are safe for your dog and make excellent low calorie filler with meals or as a treat. Only use ever raw or frozen raw carrots as canned carrots are loaded with salt.
Sugar Snap Peas (mangetout) are a great source of vitamins A, C thiamine, riboflavin and niacin.
Other ideas for the juice
Ice Lollies – If you and your dog are feeling a tad hot you can make lollies or ice cubes!! It’s fun for both you and your dog and it’s also a natural way of getting the vitamins and minerals for you both. Beware of recipes out there that recommend fruit juice you buy in your local store they tend to be full of sugar.
Don’t throw away your pulp – Make some handmade dog treats with it: mix about two cups of pulp, an egg and a half cup of oats, until you get a reasonably stiff mixture. Press it flat onto a baking sheet and cut it into squares using a pizza cutter. Bake the treats in the oven for two hours at 100 degrees C or 200 degrees F. Allow to cool before storing in an airtight container.
Warnings Juice is not a substitute for fresh drinking water, which should be available to your dog at all times. As this is a fresh juice recipe it should be consumed pretty much after it’s been made. It can be stored in the fridge for a day but any longer and they should be frozen.