See ‘Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Biscuit’ Recipe (below)
There’s no denying fall has arrived. Although we will miss the summer sun and days spent on the Lake, we look forward to enjoying the splendor that comes with this new season. Colourful leaves to run through and roll around and frolic in, and the cooler, fresh autumn air – preferable to some dogs depending on their coats. Fall presents new ‘sniffing scentsations,’ and the gorgeous, bountiful (fall) affair made available to us by our local farmers. Including squash and pumpkins!
Pumpkins are delicious and provide a generous source of nutrition for people and their pets!
The Health benefits of Pumpkin (source)
- low calorie vegetable. 100 g fruit provides just 26 calories and contains no saturated fats or cholesterol
- rich in dietary fiber, anti-oxidants, minerals, vitamins. The vegetable is one of the food items recommended by dieticians in cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs.
- contains many anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-A, vitamin-C and vitamin-E.
- The fruit is a good source of B-complex group of vitamins like folates, niacin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin and pantothenic acid.
- It is also rich source of minerals like copper, calcium, potassium and phosphorus.
- Pumpkin seeds indeed are an excellent source of dietary fiber and mono-unsaturated fatty acids, which are good for heart health. In addition, the seeds are concentrated sources of protein, minerals and health-benefiting vitamins. For instance, 100 g of pumpkin seeds provide 559 calories, 30 g of protein, 110% RDA of iron, 4987 mg of niacin (31% RDA), selenium (17% of RDA), zinc (71%) etc., but no cholesterol. Further, the seeds are an excellent source of health promoting amino acid tryptophan. Tryptophan is converted to GABA in the brain.
The healing properties in pumpkins are often used to settle stomach upsets, constipation, or diarrhea in dogs (and cats). Simply add a tablespoon of pureed pumpkin into their normal meal.
Substituting pumpkin with a portion of your dog’s normal food, also aids weight loss without loss of nutrition. Pumpkin is low calorie and rich in fiber, giving the ‘full’ feeling as well as helping to regulate digestion.
There are also healing properties in the oil found in pumpkins and their seeds. Dogs suffering from joint discomfort or urinary conditions may benefit from having pumpkin added to their diets. To avoid choking, hand-feed pumpkin seeds as a treat one at a time (in moderation), or grind the seeds and add a small amount in with your companion’s food.
Pumpkins are also extremely hydrating as they consist of ninety percent water! Foods that dehydrate your companion contribute to upset stomachs. It is good practice to monitor your pet’s intake of water. Knowing if there is an increase or decrease in consumption may be helpful information for your veterinarian.
We would like to share with you one of our favorite recipes. We simply substitute a portion of the peanut butter with pumpkin. Due to allergies, we also use Brown Rice Flour.
Pumpkin is available in a can all year long! Be sure to choose an all-natural brand that does not have added sugar or other preservatives.