Ice Cream Party!

I’m not exactly a crafty person who spends my day baking and doing DIY projects. But sometimes, Pinterest makes me think I could be this person. I’ve pinned a lot of dog recipes and projects, but most of them seem a little above my skill level. I saw an easy one recently though: DIY 3 Ingredient Dog Ice Cream Recipe, so I thought I’d start easy and give this a try.

I am very careful about what Hunter eats, and I never share my food with him, but since it’s his birthday week (yes, I am celebrating a day he has concept of for a week, don’t judge), I thought I’d make him something special. The good thing about making something for a dog is that chances are good they will eat it no matter what it tastes like, so there’s really no stress about messing it up.

I wanted to make the strawberry ice cream, but coconut butter is pretty expensive (and extremely hard to find) so I decided to skip that one and do two modified versions of the second recipe. (Also, I don’t like coconut, so Hunter probably doesn’t either.) I made the pumpkin-peanut butter one (substituting Greek yogurt) and improvised on the second one, blending pumpkin, blueberries, a little bit of honey and Greek yogurt.

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One tip: unlike me, you should follow the instructions to put your mixture into self-serve cups (this is why I’m not a great baker, I don’t like to follow directions). After it freezes, the “ice cream” will be very hard to scoop out, it pretty much just becomes frozen pumpkin. Since I didn’t want to give Hunter the full bowl, I had to defrost it for a while before I could give Hunter any. I think putting it in an ice tray would be a good really idea.

Pumpkin is actually really great for dogs (pure pumpkin puree with no sugar). It’s a good source of fiber and can help dogs with digestive issues. You don’t want to give your dog too much since it is high in Vitamin A, but a tablespoon or so should be ok depending on your dog’s size. I was careful to start out slow and only give Hunter a little bit just to make sure nothing irritated his stomach.

If you do want to make ice cream for your dog, it’s a good idea to check if the fruit you want to add is safe for dogs. Here’s a good list to refer to: http://www.dogchannel.com/dog-food/fruits-for-dogs.aspx

I think it was a success! Hunter seemed a little unsure at first but then dug right in. Think I might need to have a dog ice cream party now!

Do you have any good recipes you like to make for your dog?

Dog Friendly Spotlight: Brunch

This past weekend I went to brunch to celebrate Hunter’s birthday a little early (it’s next Sunday, but I’ll be out of town) at Wine Bar Rocky River.  We invited some pom friends since Hunter loves a pom party and enjoyed Sunday’s great weather on one of the best patios in Cleveland. Hunter loves people watching and attention, so I’m pretty sure it’s exactly what he’d want to do for his birthday.

The only time dogs are allowed on Wine Bar Rocky River’s patio is on Sunday for brunch (from 10-1). The wine bar has a really great patio, one of the prettiest in Cleveland in my opinion, so I’m happy they allow dogs there at all even if it’s only for Sunday brunch. There were quite a few other dogs there on our visit, so it got a little chaotic (lots of barking) at a few different points. The patio is pretty spacious though, so the dogs were able to stay out of each other’s way for the most part.

As you can see from the photo above of Hunter, he was pretty excited about his pom brunch birthday party.

I highly recommend Wine Bar Rocky River’s dog friendly brunch. The beautiful leafy patio is the perfect setting to enjoy some good food and drinks (I recommend trying the pomegranate mimosa). And of course I love when a restaurant designates a special day to welcome dogs.

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After you’ve checked out their brunch, here are some others to try before the summer is over:

Luxe – This Gordon Square restaurant is always dog friendly, but on Sundays they host a “Bow Wow Brunch.” It’s a pretty popular spot for dogs and every week the restaurant chooses a Bow Wow Brunch dog of the week to feature on its Facebook page.

Nighttown This Cleveland Heights restaurant/jazz club has a special patio dedicated to dogs, so it’s a good place to hit up for some brunch and dog time.

Lucky’sI love Lucky’s for brunch, so I highly recommend it as one to check out this summer with your dog.

Also, side note: one of Hunter’s pom guests, Rayne, is looking for a home! She was an awesome brunch companion, very calm and so sweet. Read more about her here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.552497571485674.1073741920.203914489677319&type=3

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Happy Birthday Dog!

My dog’s birthday is Saturday. He turns 2! Last year, for the big 0-1, I bought him his favorite treat and took him on a special outing to the park. This year (since he is so grown up) I have invited some friends to go to a dog friendly brunch. I think it’s fun to do something special to celebrate your dog. Of course I realize that my dog isn’t aware it’s his birthday, but I do think all dogs appreciate having a day that they get extra-special attention even if they don’t understand what it’s all about.
If you’re looking for something to do for your dog’s birthday, Dogster posted this article recently with some fun ideas for your dog’s big day. It even has a recipe for a dog-friendly cake.
If you’re not really the dog-cake baking type, don’t worry, you can get one from a local dog bakery! Grateful Dog Bakery in North Ridgeville bakes up all kinds of special treats for dogs. In addition to cookies and donuts, they bake dog birthday cakes. Grateful Dog also offer catering services, and you can rent their “Paw”ty Room for a 2-hour celebration, which includes a 6” birthday cake.

 

A cake from the Grateful Dog Bakery (photo credit)
One Lucky Dog in Medina also bakes dog cakes and cookies, and has a great selection of dog gifts and cards to make the day extra special. You can even order online, but still support a local business, which is kinda great.
One Lucky Dog Cake (photo credit)

What fun stuff do you do for your dog’s birthday?