Safe Diabetic Dog Treats

If you have a dog with diabetes, finding safe diabetic dog treats is of utmost importance.  All dogs love treats but with diabetic dogs, feeding snacks in between meals is more than just a treat or a training tool.  It can be vital in stabilizing blood sugar levels or even used as a reward or tool to help with insulin injections. But, here's the important bit, it must be a safe treat that doesn't affect the blood sugar levels of a diabetic dog.  That's the challenge but luckily there's a solution that I can help with.

Dog laying on his back, looking up at his owner

Managing Diabetes In Dogs

To manage diabetes in dogs you MUST consult with your veterinary and follow their guidelines on what to feed your dog if they have diabetes. Your dog's food should have the same quantity every day and consistent of a certain amount of carbohydrates and not fluctuate. It is important that dogs with diabetes are fed at the same time every day, preferably twice a day. 

Any treats that contains sugar or carbohydrates are likely to affect your dog's blood sugar levels and throw off their insulin levels.  Sugar can be listed as many things such as fructose, dextrose, molasses, cane molasses, corn syrup or malt syrup. Store bought treats that are soft or are semi-moist usually contain sugar or one of the alternate sugars listed.  Same goes for the store bought jerky-type treats, so be careful and read the labels and always check with your vet if you're in doubt. 

What You Need In a Diabetic Dog Treat

We've looked at what you DON'T want in diabetic dog treats but what about what you DO need!  In a nutshell, you need a treat that doesn't raise or even affect the blood sugar levels, satisfies your dog's hunger, helps with training, keeps your dog at a healthy weight, and most of all, is tasty!

Meat-based treats, whole grains, or vegetable treats are best.  Fruits are acceptable too but need to be in moderation. We do have some fabulous recipes for you to try further down the page!

Dog with a roast chicken.



Treats made with meat or vegetables are the best treats for diabetic dogs.

Dog with healthy fruit and vegetables.

Read The Label Of Diabetic Dog Treats

If you buy diabetic dog treats, it is vital that you check the label. Don't be fooled into thinking that because the label says 'diabetic dog treats' that it is in fact safe for your dog, still read the label to ensure that it doesn't contain the following:

  • Sugar
  • Fructose
  • Dextrose
  • Molasses
  • Cane Molasses 
  • Corn Syrup
  • Malt Syrup
  • Corn
  • Soy
  • Propylene Glycol

Turning Your Dogs Food Into A Treat

If you'd rather not add additional treats to your dog's diet, you can adapt their current food into a tasty treat.  This changes the texture and subtle taste changes which makes the food more enticing and interesting to your dog but keeps the calorie and carbohydrate content relatively the same.

All our dogs deserve a treats! If your dog is on restricted diet, using your dogs food as a treat is a fabulous way to make them feel special. Here's a few great recipes for making your dog they own diabetic dog treats.

Treats Using Dry Food

Place 2 cups of your dog dried food in a blender and grind the food so it becomes a powder consistency. Mix the grinned dried dog food with 1/4 cup of cold water until it forms a dough. Shape the dough into cookie shapes, using the back of a wooden spoon or fork flatten them down a little and place them onto a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Make sure you let the cookies cool down before serving them to your dog. 

These cookies can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week in a sealed container.

Treats Using Canned Food

Open a can of your dogs food and cut the loaf into 1/4" thick slices. To make it fun, use a small cookie cutter to cut out individual pieces of the loaf. If you don't have cookie cutters, you can cut the loaf into bite-sized pieces instead. Place the cookies on a non greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degree for 30 minutes or until crispy.

These treats can be kept in an air tight container in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Refreshing Frozen Canned Food Treat

Try rolling the canned food into small bite sized balls and place them in the freezer. A few hours later you can serve these frozen treats to your dog, it's a great refreshing treat to help keep your dog cool in the summer.  

Best Homemade Diabetic Dog Treats

If you're looking for the best diabetic dog treats then homemade is absolute the best way to go.  You'll be able to keep an eye on the ingredients and ensure that it's tasty.  The best ones are meat based treats.  I like, or rather my dog (Lady) likes, homemade dehydrated chicken, beef, or liver.  These are super simple to make, contain NO sugar or carbohydrates, last a long time, and you can make them as soft or as hard as you choose.  I prefer to make them on the harder side so they take a little longer for Lady to eat.  Too soft and it'll be gone in a second!  These are similar to the very popular jerky treats sold in store.  But be warned, the store made ones often have sugar added and frequently come from China and are on many recall lists.  See here for more information about dangerous dog treats.

Dehydrated Turkey, Spinach, Carrots and Pumpkin Jerky

Diabetic Dehydrated Jerky Turkey Treats"Turkey, Spinach, Carrots and Pumpkin Jerky"
Nesco FD-61WHC Snackmaster Express Food Dehydrator All-In-One Kit with Jerky Gun

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 1lb chopped meat (turkey, chicken or beef)
  • 1 tbsp. pure pumpkin (Pumpkin decreases blood sugar and increases levels of insulin in the blood).
  • 1/4 cup fresh spinach, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh carrots, grated
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon (Cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar after meals and increases metabolism).

METHOD:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix together.
  2. Spoon mixture into Jerky gun.
  3. Using the jerky gun form rows of stick-like treats directly onto dehydrator pan.
  4. Set dehydrator for 6 hours on 160F or overnight on 125F.

Chicken, Asparagus and Broccoli Bake

Chicken, Asparagus and Broccoli Bake cooking the saucepan.
Chicken, Asparagus and Broccoli Bake - Cooked and cooling down in a glass dish.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 chicken breasts (no skin or fat)
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly chopped 
  • 1 cup asparagus, cut into 1/2 inch pieces 
  • 1 cup raw broccoli
  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon fresh parsley
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice 

METHOD:

  1. Slice up the chicken breast into 1 inch pieces.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine the garlic, asparagus, chicken, chicken stock, parsley and broccoli bring to a boil.
  3. Simmer for 1/2 hour or until the vegetables are tender.
  4. Add the cooked brown rice to the saucepan and mix all the ingredients together. (Add more brown rice if it seems too soupy)
  5. Pour the mixture into a glass dish and cool down, before serving.

Fishermen's Seafood Treats 

A great diabetic dog treats. Sardines might be small, but they're packed with health benefits and nutrients such as omega-3, vitamin D, vitamin B12, amino acids and coenzyme Q10. Many dog owners worry about mercury in fish.The best thing about giving your dogs sardines is because they're small - their life cycle and diet makes them much safer and are likely to not have more than trace amount of mercury. 

  • Great for dogs skin and coats (especially in the winter)
  • They keep dogs immune systems strong
  • Help with muscle and connective tissue development
  • Beneficial to dogs with allergies 
  • Acts as an anti-inflammatory, great for dogs who suffer with arthritis. 
  • Perfect treat for puppies and senior dogs as this treat is great for the brain

When buying sardines for your dog, always buy wild caught, packed in water - There's no need for more oil, salt or any other ingredients that could be harmful for your dog. Sardines are a soft-boned fist, and dogs can safety digest the bones with no issues.

Chopped sardines, ready to go into a homemade dog treat.
Cooked Fishermen's Seafood Treats. A great treat for dogs who suffer with diabetes.
Chopped up fishermen's Seafood Treats.

My dog went absolutely crazy for this! She loved it and couldn't get enough! The great thing about this treat is that it only contains four ingredients, which you may already have at home. You can always include this in your dogs food to make dinner time more exciting.

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 2 3.75oz can sardines (in water, no salt)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh or dried parsley
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1/2 cup vegetables (optional) or 0.25 cup pumpkin puree (optional) 

This makes a small batch. If you would like to make a larger amount - double the ingredients. 

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Coat a small sized casserole dish with non-stick spray. 
  2. Drain and chop the sardines, then mix with parsley and vegetables (optional) or pumpkin puree (optional)
  3. Pour the sardine mixture into the casserole dish and spread evenly. 
  4. Crack each egg onto the top of the sardine mixture.
  5. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes or until the eggs are cooked.
  6. Cool before serving to your dog. These treats can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days or can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

Tip: Don't throw away the water from the sardines. You can use this as a gravy on your dogs food, plus a teaspoon or turmeric, which has great health benefits for dogs.

Cinnamon & Almond Butter Pill Pockets 
(No Baking Required)

Many dogs that suffer from medical problems have to take medication on a daily basis and this can sometimes be a battle for you and your dog. These homemade pill stuffers can easily be made at home, using simple and safe ingredients. Even if your dog doesn't need to take any medication, you can still make these, but without the holes!

INGEDIENTS: 

  • 1/3 cup unsweetened natural almond butter
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 2 drops of water
  • 1 pinch of cinnamon (Antibacterial/anti-fungal can assist with arthritis and muscular inflammation in older dogs)

METHOD:

  1. Slowly add the water to the almond butter mixture, until you get a thick paste. (Adjust the water if needed)
  2. Add the oats into the mixture and stir well.
  3. Divide the mixture into balls (The size of the balls depends on the size of the tablets and your dog)
  4. Using your finger, poke a hole in the center to form a hole. This hole will be for the tables.
  5. Place them in an airtight container and store in the fridge.

Best Store Bought Diabetic Dog Treats

If you don't have time or just don't want the hassle of making your own dog treats, there is a way of ensuring your providing healthy choices for your dog. Look for a treat that has meat or whole grains as the main ingredients(meat should always be the first ingredient listed). Freeze dried meats are perfect but again, check with your vet if you are unsure. Other good examples are:

Old Dog Cookie Co -  Natural Diabetic Dog Treats

The Old Dog Cookie Co have created the perfect cookies for dogs who suffer from diabetes. They are made in the USA, contain no additives, chemicals, dyes or other by-products. They have carefully selected ingredients that are known to help reduce blood sugar, slow the rate of metabolism and help manage insulin requirements.   

There is no added sugar in these treats, only natural sugar in the apples - which is one of the ingredients. Many dog owners are restricted when it comes to giving their dog diabetic/low glucose treats as there are not many on the market and can be very bland in flavor. You will not be disappointed in these diabetic dog treats!

100% Natural Dehydrated Chicken Feet

These tasty treats from The Healthy Companion Company are in the USA and only contain one ingredient and that it chicken feet. When looking for chicken feet treats for your dog, make sure they are dehydrated and not cooked/roasted. When bones have been cooked/roasted there is more chance that they will splinter - which could cause your dog an injury and no-one wants that! These treat are safest option because they are dehydrated and 100% natural.

They are a great reward for good behavior, a treat for a friend, for training purposes or just to supplement a healthy canine diet. If your dog is on a raw diet, make a trip to your local butcher and buy some fresh chicken feet - raw chicken feet are 100% safe for all dogs. 

Final Word On Diabetic Dog Treats

I know it may be overwhelming when your dog has been diagnosed with something like diabetes but just remember, diabetes responds pretty well with dietary changes and required medication from your vet.  Luckily you are in total control of your dog's diet so there's no chance of them sneaking a crafty candy bar while you're not looking, or at least there shouldn't be!! LOL.

If you have time, making your own meat-based diabetic dog treats is the best and most economical way to go. You can always try making their existing dog food more interesting by converting them into treats and remember, if you are going to buy commercial dog treats, check the labels carefully and discuss all issues or concerns with your vet.


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ABOUT ME

Hello, I’m Sarah, the owner of Pure Dog Treats! I started my website in 2016 when myself, my husband and our border collie ‘Lady’ moved to the US from the UK.

My passion is making a variety of wholesome, natural, tasty dog treats in the comfort of my own home. I provide a range of homemade recipes and recommendations for healthy, diabetic, homemade, organic,  vegetarian dog treats and much more. I have learnt that it can be confusing and challenging to find healthy dog treats, and would like to pass on my knowledge and passion onto other dog lovers.

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