I heard on the news recently that consumers should prepare for sticker shock at the grocery store, as due to short supply, the price of pumpkin - both in gourd form and in the can - is about to go up. In fact, they made it sound like there might not even be enough of the canned stuff with which to make a traditional pumpkin pie over the holidays. Can you imagine?! (Thanksgiving without pumpkin pie is just another turkey dinner at my house!) More on this development in a bit, but first...
Have you seen all the pumpkin stuff in the grocery store lately? I mean, not only is every food item known to man suddenly compatible with pumpkin spice flavoring (and/or coloring), but even the non-edible stuff, too: air fresheners, soap, candles, cat litter... YES, CAT LITTER! (OK, maybe it's "crisp autumn air"-scented, but still. What cat needs to poo in an autumn air-scented toilet?? On second thought, don't answer that...)
|Spotted during a recent trip to Target. I could not make this stuff up.|
Sheesh, with so much pumpkin available for mass consumption, no wonder it's in short supply! We'll have to eat pumpkin pie flavored pop tarts for Thanksgiving dessert! Thanks a lot, food and scented-stuff makers!
Alright. So the reason I'm telling you all this - contrary to what it may seem - is not to frustrate or alarm you (or make you hungry for pie), but to show you how EASY it is to get pumpkin (the pure, good stuff**) into your dog's diet, in comparison!
|Exactly what is it, ma?|
But back to that pumpkin shortage...Look, I don't know if it's true or hype - pumpkin is certainly NOT scarce where I shop, nor has the price gone up - but just in case it might, RUN! Go to the store and buy some pumpkin (either a couple of the small, pie pumpkins or 2-3 15-oz cans)! Your dog will thank you later (when he accidentally eats some OTHER animal's "choco-pie" in the yard/box, for example, and gets an upset stomach)!
|But I didn't eat the poo.|
Like that one time (and the several subsequent other times) when Jon Farleigh had a problem. I just gave him a couple spoons full of canned pumpkin on top of a bland diet, and
*** Do NOT EVER do that! (Slice a dog pie. Oh, the horror!)
** In addition to dietary fiber, pure pumpkin (including the seeds) is loaded with beta-carotene, vitamin A, iron, potassium, magnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc. It is also a good source of antioxidants. Only one or two spoons full of pumpkin is recommended per feeding, however, as too much can cause an unhealthy build-up of certain nutrients in your pet. More scientific information here.
My Top 2 Ways to Obtain Pure Pumpkin for Feeding
1. Buy a small, PIE pumpkin (they'll be labeled as such) - NOT a carving, Halloween pumpkin - at your grocery store, or produce stand. Then, follow this RECIPE FOR FRESH PUMPKIN PUREE from the Pioneer Woman. (Don't worry, it's simple.)
|Great Scott! It's a PUNKIN!|
2. Buy a can of pure pumpkin in the grocery store. This is my preferred method.
(Note: DO NOT buy the Libby's Pumpkin Pie Mix in the giant can! It is loaded with sugar, fat and spices, because it is PIE filling, and by that I mean the EDIBLE kind. Just make sure your pumpkin is pure.)
|I love you with every fiber of my squash-colored being! |
(Note: Do not give your dog the can. This photo is only for show.)
How to Store Extra Pumpkin So It Doesn't Go to Waste
If you're using pumpkin to correct your dog's occasional pie issues, you won't need to use a whole can, nor a whole pumpkin's worth.
When I have leftover pumpkin, I just divide it into freezer bags/containers, freeze, and then pull it out as needed. No need to even thaw (if you've frozen in single servings). You can also spread the leftover pumpkin in an ice tray and freeze it in cubes.
Use Leftovers to Make Yummy Pumpkin Dog Treats for Another Day!
And you're in luck, because our blog friends at Rubicon Days just published this curated list of 10 healthy pumpkin treats for dogs! (Go see; you and your dog will drool!)
Now, if you'll excuse me, I think I hear a Krispy Kreme pumpkin spice cake doughnut calling...
|((Ring)) "Hello." |
"You need some fried pumpkin spice cake in your life."
"OK, be there in 20 minutes!"
Do you give your pet pumpkin regularly? (Or irregularly, to combat irregularity? ☺) Do you have any "serving" tips to share?
* The first time I ever published a post about feeding my dogs pumpkin, I referred to their "chocolate pie" as "Hershey." I decided to go a little less brand-name this time. Especially since Halloween is coming up, and hello? Reese's PB Cups! (Hershey product.) Those are sacred, y'all.
|Does not (and better not ever) contain actual pumpkin. ♥|
(Do not feed to your dog.)
But like whoever heard of someone handing out chocolate pie on Halloween? No one! (But in the rare event someone does, RUN FOR YOUR LIFE! They're trying to kill you! ☺)
P.S. Pure pumpkin is great for cats, too. If you can get them to eat it.
P.P.S. Halloween is in the air and you'll wanna stay tuned (to the blog and/or Facebook), because tricks, treats and a HUGE giveaway are coming next week!