I give Gretel a stuffed Kong when I leave the house to help with her separation anxiety. In an attempt to reduce her calorie intake, I switched from peanut butter stuffing to making my own low-calorie stuffing. Each small stuffed Kong holds 2 Tbs so each Kong was almost 200 calories when filled with peanut butter. My goal has been to get it down to 50 calories per Kong.
I knew my first attempt failed when my dog would not eat it. I have been trying several different recipes since then. I was trying to make the stuffing with all kinds of beneficial supplements but I know they didn’t all taste that good. I decided to go back to basics and slowly add stuff in. I finally found one recipe that is worth sharing.
Low-calorie Peanut Butter, Banana, Coconut Kong Stuffing
- 1 – 15 oz can Butternut Squash (unsweetened, unsalted)
- 2 medium Bananas
- 1/2 c fresh-ground peanut butter
- 3 Tbs (15 grams) CocoTherapy Coconut Chips
- 2 packets Honest Kitchen Pro Bloom Instant Goat’s Milk
- 2 Tbs Diggin Your Dog Pumpkin Cranberry Firm-Up Flakes
- 2 Tbs Kelp Flakes
Directions: Blend all ingredients in a food processor until they form a paste. Transfer the mix into a condiment dispenser bottle for easy filling of the Kong and put it in the fridge (freeze what you are not going to use in two days*). Fill a Kong and freeze overnight before giving to your dog. Makes approximately 3 1/2 cups. 2 Tbs serving = 54 calories.
The pumpkin flakes and kelp in this recipe are primarily used so the mixture is not so runny. However, Pumpkin is known aid in digestion and kelp contains a lot of vitamins and minerals.
The star of this recipe is the Honest Kitchen Pro Bloom Instant Goat’s Milk. It’s a shelf-stable* instant goat’s milk that will keep until you are ready to mix it with water and use it. It also acts as a binder in this recipe but contains important digestive enzymes and probiotics that support a healthy digestive system. Raw goat’s milk such is also known to have cancer fighting properties and it is believed to help many other illnesses.
*Once the goat’s milk is mixed with liquid, it must be used within two days. Freezing of the goat’s milk does not kill the good bacteria (I know because the dog Mom from MyBrownNewfies asked) so you can freeze the part of this mix that will not be used within 2 days.
Part of the problem with my first batch of Kong stuffing that did not go over well was that Gretel really likes peanut butter and it didn’t contain any. Here I added enough back in to give her the taste but keep the calories to a minimum. She likes this mixture much better. I am going to keep experimenting though and plan to share other successful recipes.
An interesting side note: After giving Gretel reduced calorie Kong stuffing for 2 months, she has lost over 1/2 lb. That may not sound like a lot but it matters when you only weight 10 lbs 🙂