It's September. Summer is over. The traffic gets heavier. The days are shorter. The gutters get plugged with fallen leaves. Costco has all the Christmas-y things out because Christmas is only 112 days away! (You're welcome.)
OH YEH...and it's back to school for the kids!
I don't have kids, but I'd imagine the conversations that happen between parent and child are pretty much similar, if not the same conversations I have with Kona. Did you go pooh? What's in your mouth now? Finished your dinner? Stop eating dirt!! Thankfully, our neighbour next door is aware that we don't have kids as I'm sure on occasion, she can hear me screaming, "COCO! STOP HUMPING YOUR SISTER!!!". Freaking cats.
So in the spirit of back to school, I wanted to share with you one of my all time favourite dog treat recipes. Because dogs go back to school too. Whether you're taking puppy classes this fall or working through reactivity issues with your dog; using food in training is one of the best ways to create positive associations and teach new behaviours in any animal. Enter TUNA FUDGE, (I did not invent this recipe but I'd like to high five the person who did). I love this recipe so much because it's simple, cheap, makes bag loads, and requires only 3 ingredients. These treats are soft and will not crumble between your fingers, which is preferable when trying to get in high rates of reinforcement. Waiting for a dog to finish chewing his treat between repetitions? Ain't nobody got time for that!
This is what you'll need:
Whole wheat flour, 2 cans of flaked tuna, 2 eggs, and some massive pipes for mixing. OR if you're lazy like me, a stand up mixer is most ideal. Seriously, folks. 3 ingredients, that's it. If you want to get all Rachel Ray, you can even add some parmesan to the recipe. The powdery ghetto kind that sits unrefrigerated on grocery store shelves. Yum.
Mix the ingredients up, spread it out onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes. Watch the cable guy make Funky Smell Face when he walks through the door to fix your PVR.
Let the slab of fudge fully cool when it comes out of the oven. Once it's cool to touch, cut up the slab into treat-sized pieces. I like to use a meat cleaver for this part because I'm Chinese and Chinese parents buy their children meat cleavers when they move out. Not sure if that's fact, but mine did anyway.
This recipe makes a Ziplock sandwich bag STUFFED with Tuna Fudge. You can even freeze batches of it and pull them out of the freezer when you need them. I do highly recommend keeping these treats stored in the fridge when you are using them during the week. Since they are soft treats, they do hold moisture and are susceptible to mold if not stored properly. You have been warned.
So there you have it! Treats that are easy to make and won't break the bank. Your dog(s) will love it and with all the extra money you end up saving, you can put that money towards more dog things your dog really doesn't need because that's what dog people do.
Full recipe below.