How many times have you heard how dangerous it is to feed “people” food to your pet? The reason generally given is that human food is too hard for animals to digest. With more and more pet foods going the natural route, though, one would have to wonder if our animals can benefit from some foods that we eat ourselves.
Now, let’s answer the question at hand. The answer, simply, is yes! As we mentioned, most “human” foods are said to be difficult for pets to digest. However, honey has already been digested…by the bees! This means that your dog will have no problems enjoying the same manuka honey that you love.
Do Dogs Benefit from Manuka Honey?
Absolutely. Many of the benefits we enjoy are just as useful to our dogs. For instance, honey has natural carbohydrates, which will offer a burst of energy for your pet. Today, many of the specialty foods on the market for pets are extremely high in protein, which can make them lethargic over time, just like we feel after that big turkey dinner on Thanksgiving. It can also improve the overall health of their fur and skin. One more additional benefit is that honey will fight “bad bacteria” in your pet’s digestive tract.
Concerns about Giving Your Dog Honey
Just like humans, dogs can be diabetic or be allergic. Before giving your dog honey, make sure he or she has a checkup with your vet to ensure giving your pet honey is safe. If it is okay, you want to make sure that you never give the dog too much, as this can also be dangerous. Depending on the dog’s size, about one tablespoon a day should do the trick. Again, consult with your vet just to make sure.
If you want your dog to enjoy the benefits of honey but do not want to feed him honey right out of the jar, consider making these homemade dog treats with honey.
Homemade Peanut Butter and Manuka Honey Dog Treats
2 T Manuka honey
1 c natural peanut butter
1 c water
1 t baking powder
2.5 c flour (can use whole wheat, rice flour, or coconut flour depending upon dogs allergies, if he or she has them)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. While oven is warming, combine baking powder and flour. Mix until combined
3. Beat egg and add into flour mix, mix until combined
4. Fold in remaining ingredients and mix to create dough (this works best if you do it with an actual mixer that features a paddle attachment for making dough)
5. Spread some flour on a flat surface and roll out dough to desired thickness (don’t make them too thick)
6. Cut dough into desired shapes (use cookie cutters to do this – make for great gifts around the holidays for your friends that also have dogs)
7. Place cut outs on sheet pan and place in oven for about 20 minutes
8. Remove from oven and allow to cool before serving
9. If you are going to keep them for some time, put in airtight container or wrap in a sealable bag so they remain fresh (such as a sandwich bag)