Monday, September 22, 2014

Ernie's Treats: Mint and Parsley dog treats

About a month ago, my sweet, caring, biggest-hearted-human-on-earth cousin Maggie got terrible news about her beautiful golden retriever.  Before I get to the sad stuff, let met tell you first about Ernie.

Picture the biggest goofball of a dog you can imagine, and that was Ern.  Ernie: the dog who was diagnosed with canine ADHD, who was happy even when he was at the vet, who loved walks on the beach.  He would literally "smile" when you walked in to their house, and would frantically try to please you by bringing you a present.  These presents ranged from socks to mittens to sometimes mouthfuls of your own shirt.  All of this would occur while he squeaked with excitement.

This was a dog that loved life, loved everyone, and loved everything (maybe except for going outside; he was pretty content to relax inside).  This was a dog who was best friends with a tiny chihuahua; he would let her take naps on his tail.  He  never get annoyed with all the other crazy animals Maggie brought home for him to meet, whether it was a deer fawn, a goat, a sheep, or a rat.

Ernie was a love, and his family loved him very much.  This made it so much harder when they found out that even though Ernie was a young pup, they didn't have much longer with him.  I don't have to get into the details, because I was more interested in sharing the healthy Ernie with you.  I am also interested in sharing what Maggie and I decided to do with some of the precious time we had left with him: we decided to bake him some homemade dog treats.
Dog treat dough galore!

It sounds simple, but we made a day of it, and it was a beautiful day.  We decided to bake three different types of dog treats to feed our own dogs, but also to sell at our town benefit.  All four of our hounds -  Daisy, Delilah, Ernie and Ruby Sue - were going to be our taste testers, but Ernie was our mascot.   Maggie printed up tags with a gorgeous picture of Ernie on the front, and wrote "Ernie's Treats" on them.  We then baked up a storm here at my house for a whole afternoon, packaged them up, and had Mark take a basket of them to the Neighbors Helping Neighbors Town Benefit, which is an awesome little thing our town does to raise money that is used to help each other out in times of need.  Our dog treats were sold in the bake sale area, and were nearly sold out by the time I went to the fair to see how they were doing!  It made Maggie and I happy to know we were feeding lots of dogs some treats made with love, and that Ernie was living on in these happy hounds.

Ernie passed away a couple weeks ago.  It was hard and sad and awful.  His family will always miss him - even though their new pup Arlo definitely has a little Ernie in him, and has helped dull the pain a little bit.  I will be sharing the three Ernie's Treats recipes over the next three dog posts, starting with these easy mint and parsley treats (we called them Breath Savers!).  I hope you try some new dog treats out for a dog that you love.  Just think of Ernie when you make them <3


mint and parsley dog treats
from Live in Art

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup oats
2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) Mix oil and water.  Slowly add flour, and then all other ingredients.

3) Roll dough out on a flat surface to desired thickness.  Cut out with cookie cutters.  Reroll extra dough and continue cutting cookies until dough is gone.

4) Place on cookie sheet; bake for 35 minutes.  Treats can be frozen, or can last for about 1 month in an airtight container.

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