Monday, February 10, 2014

Tallow Tabs for Dogs

It's a delicious treat...

it's a healthy supplement.

These are the players...  

Take 2 very large, heaping tablespoons of alfalfa and put it in a small dish.  Pour 2 or 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar over it and stir, incorporating well.  Use more apple cider vinegar, if needed, to be sure the alfalfa is completely saturated, but not puddling.

While the alfalfa is soaking up the apple cider vinegar, pause to enjoy the view from the window of your workspace.

Place about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of soaked alfalfa in each mold cup (I use a silicon mold that makes 24 1 to 2 tablespoon tabs).

Next, combine the melted tallow and coconut oil in a measuring cup or bowl.  Use whatever ratios you prefer.  This time, I did half and half.

Spoon a tablespoon of tallow/oil into each mold cup.  You may want to give each a gentle stir to be sure the alfalfa is well incorporated.  Place in the fridge or freezer till solid.

While it's hardening, take another moment to appreciate the sunny day; then realize how much it makes the dust stand out on your lovely Finnish window ornament... go get the dust brush and take care of that.

Pop them out and, voila... store in the refrigerator.

My 60-ish pounders each get one tab a day.  Little Ada Janey gets just half.

Here is how each of the ingredients can benefit your pup...

Grass-fed Tallow:

It's beefy and provides an excellent base to make the other ingredients palatable to my furry kids.  Tallow, which is rendered suet, comes from the kidney/loin area of the cow.  It is an excellent source of niacin, vitamins B6, B12, K2, selenium, iron, phosphorus, potassium and riboflavin.  Grass-fed beef tallow contains high ratio of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) which is a cancer-resistent agent, and also contains a small amount of vitamin D.

It's important not to overdue the amount of fat your dog eats.  That pile of fat pushed to the side of your dinner plate that you trimmed off your steak... it's best not to let Fido have that.  But a bit of healthy, grass-fed tallow?  Go for it.

Coconut Oil:

Coconut oil is a wonder food for humans and their pets.  It has antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal properties that protect against disease and infection.  It will improve you dog's skin and coat, aid in digestion and nutrient absorption, and reduce allergic reactions.  It aids in arthritis and ligament problems, helps reduce weight and increase energy, and (applied topically) promotes the healing of cuts, wounds, hot spots, bites, stings, dry skin.

The coconut oil in our home is as much for the dogs as it is for us.  We use it regularly.

Raw Apple Cider Vinegar:

Again, apple cider vinegar is great for people and pets, alike.  It's a great way to balance the alkaline/acid levels in your dog's body, as well as help with digestive health and allergies.  It will even help with parasites, such as ringworm, fleas, ticks, fungus and bacteria.

You can add a teaspoon (and up to 2 T, daily) to your dog's food and water... but good luck with that.  My dogs don't care for the taste of it and will snub it if the food I'm adding it to is too subtle in taste and smell.  For example, I've tried adding to their water, but they won't touch it.  So, I have to be creative.  That's why I'm now hiding it in their tallow tabs.  They don't get nearly the daily dose they could safely take in just the tallow tabs, so I also try to hide it in other places, too, such as the chicken and vegetable bits discarded from the bone broth - but that's not a daily occurrence.


Alfalfa contains a broad spectrum of nutrients and is high in chlorophyll which serves as an antioxidant in the bloodstream.  It's also one of the best known herbal treatments for arthritis and may reduce pain associated with it, and is said to promote mental vigor.  It's a recommended herb, particularly, for geriatric animals.  (source)

And there you have it.  Tallow Tabs for Dogs... mine love them!  

If I had just one or two dogs, they would likely get this twice a day.  But, I have eight!  So, mine get one per day; otherwise, I'd be making tallow tabs constantly!

Keep those tails wagging!

Sharing with the Homeacre Hop and The Sunday Social, Clever Chicks Hop


Kristiina said...

Great post! I need to make these for my girls!

Marie at The Homesteader School said...

What an awesome idea! I have grassfed suet to render for the kitchen but I will be making some of these for our 120# giants (Maremma sheepdogs :)

Helen said...

Can you make these for cats?

Pam O'Brien said...

I've read conflicting opinions on the alfalfa (the other ingredients are fine for cats). Some say that alfalfa is toxic to cats, others say it's fine and they've had no problems giving it to theirs (in very small, supplemental amounts).
Erring on the side of caution, I'd find an herb that is irrefutably good for cats. The reason you want to include an herb, at all, is to soak up the ACV. Otherwise, it would not incorporate with the fats and just puddle when the liquid oils harden.

Jessica said...

I don't have tallow, but I do have lard from organic pastured pigs...would that be a good substitute?

Pam O'Brien said...

Hi Jessica,

My gut reaction is that lard would be a good substitute, however, I do not have lard as readily available to me as I do tallow, so I have not explored the health benefits of it (for people or pets) the way that I have for tallow.

Nancy Wolff said...

No wonder your dog's tails are wagging! What a wonderful dog treat! Thanks for sharing on the HomeAcre Hop, hope to see you again tomorrow! - Nancy The Home Acre Hop

LoveMyLife said...

I love this....but I have a only one Chihuahua (5lbs). So how much would I give him?

Lola The Pitty said...

These sound great! find Tallow.