Four Feet and Food (now with some training too!)

Doing our best to keep our furry children healthy by being vigilant about what we feed them and how we also keep them mentally stimulated.


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Chile’s Chicken Jerky

Yesterday I finally got around to making some homemade chicken jerky.  It was very easy and turned out pretty good for a first try.  Just like the sweet potato chews this is probably much faster with a food dehydrator but the giant cupboard in the garage where I keep my kitchen gadgets is approaching maximum capacity and an oven seems to do the job just fine.

The instructions are as follows:

  • Pre-heat oven to 210 degrees
  • Cut boneless, skinless chicken breast pieces into 1/4 inch (or preferred size strips)
  • Lightly grease a cookie sheet with olive oil to prevent sticking.  I covered the cookie sheet with foil for easier clean up and brushed it lightly with some EVOO.
  • Place chicken strips in a single layer on the cookie sheet as spread out as possible.

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  • Place cookie sheet on middle rack of the oven and check on the strips after about thirty minutes. (The “recipe” I found online said 20 minutes, mine were not even CLOSE to being jerky at 20 mins).
  • Continue checking on the strips every thirty minutes until they are firm and look chewy.  I had VERY small strips and pieces, it took about 3 hours and 30 minutes. 

The pieces did harden up a bit after I turned off the oven too. 

I’ve stored them in the refrigerator because I’m not sure how long they will last at room temperature without any preservatives. 

Chile absolutely loved them and I don’t have to worry about any recalls !

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Homemade Sweet Potato Chews

With all of the circulating reports of dogs falling ill or even dying after eating jerky treats, I no longer feel confident feeding Chile most store-bought chews.   She is a dog, however, and loves to have chewy treats to gnaw on and I like them because they keep her busy if we are out at a restaurant with her or shopping, etc.   I decided to try making some sweet potato chews at home and it was actually pretty simple.  Chile loved them and my husband and I even ate some as a snack ourselves.

I made them in the oven so it tsweet potato treatsook a few hours but if you have a food dehydrator that would probably be faster.

The “recipe” is as follows:

  • Pre-heat oven to 250° F
  • Scrub the sweet potato (I used one large, organic sweet potato), no need to peel.
  • Cut the sweet potato into the desired size, I cut them into chip-sized discs because Chile has a smaller mouth. The ones you see sold in stores are usually cut lengthwise to make them look like jerky. The thinner you cut the slices the shorter your baking time.
  • Place the slices in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake at 250° F for three hours (slightly chewy) or longer for crunchier.  Keep an eye on them because your cooking time will vary depending on your oven and the thickness of your slices.

One single, simple ingredient that’s delicious and nutritious!  (Much cheaper than buying a bag at the store too!)