I didn't meet her until she was twelve years old. Icing Troll came with two dogs, Remeford and Sadie. Remeford is Icing Troll's buddy, an overly affectionate and sweet labrador mix; the 'Winnie the Pooh' of the dog world: cuddly, always hungry and of very little brain. Sadie, a whippet-rhodesian ridgeback mix, I was told was a shy dog that kept to herself, spending much of her time on her pet bed chewing her antlers and bones. I was told she wouldn't sleep in the bed with me, didn't play games with toys like fetch, didn't like typical dog petting such as belly rubs, and hates to be picked up. Within the course of a few weeks she made a liar out of Icing Troll, except for the picking up part (but honestly she is a bit too large in frame for picking up anyway). The first night we met we went on a walk and that night she slept in the bed with me, head on pillow with blanket pulled to her snout. She abandoned the pet bed, something Remeford now enjoys. Within time, I discovered she not only knows how to play fetch (without being taught to bring back the toy), she enjoys tug-of-war with toy ropes or, on walks, the leash as well if she's feeling frisky. Belly rubs are not just tolerated, they are appreciated as she stretches her hind legs.
Now Sadie is fifteen years old and just as high energy as when I met her. Her fur has become mostly peppered with gray and I often call her 'Poivre' (Pepper), a shortened version of 'Long Nail Pepper Skin,' as the whippet breed in her allows for a long nail bed, nails she likes painted pink. I've been told since I've come into her life she is a changed dog, unrecognizable in behavior. But, I believe the 'new behavior' to be what was repressed until she found a buddy she trusted and was comfortable around to express her true self. When we go to an animal shelter, like where Poivre and Remeford came from, or a breeder, we chose the dog. I often wonder now, given the choice, would the dog choose us too?
I make my dogs homemade treats, as I find the number of chemicals, artificial flavorings, and preservatives in commercial dog treats deplorable. Poivre is also allergic to something found in commercially available products, but what that something is is unknown. Upon meeting her the first time I noticed her skin and fur was lackluster, flaky, and oily. My suspicion was a food allergy as my childhood dog, Ginger, had the same skin issues. But it was the 1980s and dog food choices weren't as plentiful as they are now, catering to pets with various nutritional requirements. I changed Poivre's food to one where meat, not by-products, and fruits and vegetables were highest on the list of ingredients. I also supplemented her meals with a squirt of salmon oil fortified with omega-3 benefits. Similarly, I won't feed her or Remeford a treat I wouldn't put in my own mouth, so this recipe incorporates flax seed, also a source of omega-3, lecithin (aids in vitamin absorption, another source of the omegas, and helps reduce skin irritations) and bacon, because bacon is what they really care about.
Spoiled Rotten Hound: It's Bacon! Dog Cookies
I am not a veterinary professional, nor are the recommendations from my veterinarian necessarily the same as another. It is recommended you consult your veterinarian before feeding your dog any type of homemade treat.
Makes approximately 60 cookies sized 1 inch x 1 inch for small-sized dogs; 30 cookies sized 2 inches x 1 inch for medium-sized dogs; 20 cookies sized 3 inches x 1 inch for large-sized dogs.
It's Bacon | Dog Cookies
470 g all-purpose flour
70 g ground yellow cornmeal
35 g flax seed
100 g bacon, fried crisp, drained, and chopped fine
340 g beef broth
110 g olive oil
Preheat oven to 350 F (177 C).
Line a cookie tray with parchment paper or a silpat/non-stick baking mat.
It's Bacon! Dog Cookies | Preparation
Sift the flours, cornmeal, and flax seed in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on low speed for 1 minute to combine.
Switch to the dough hook attachment. Add the bacon. On medium speed, slowly add the oil followed by the beef broth. Mix for 1 minute to allow all ingredients to fully incorporate into the dough.
Baking | Final Assembly
On a silpat or non-stick baking mat, roll out the dough into sausage-sized lengths of approximately 6 inches each. The diameter of the sausage should be adjusted based on the size of the dog cookies you will be making
With the roll lying lengthwise on the mat, use a pizza cutter or a knife to make slices 1 inch apart from each other.
Using your fingers, shape the edges.
Place the cookies on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper spaced 1 inch apart.
Bake at 350 F (177C) for 35 to 40 minutes for small cookies, 40 to 45 minutes for medium cookies, or 50 to 60 minutes for large cookies or until firm to the touch and lightly golden brown.
Remove from the oven and place the pan on a wire rack to cool to room temperature. The cookies will harden as they cool to room temperature.
Serving | Storage
Serve the cookies to your pet only after they have cooled to room temperature.
The cookies can be stored in an air-tight container for up to 21 days when stored in the refrigerator.
Dog cookie recipe by The Confection Witch | Photography by The Confection Witch & Icing Troll