It’s that time of year! Pumpkin and Pumpkin Spice everything floats around flavors everything from water to coffee to candles to dog food and treats. Dog food and treats? You bet! Pumpkin is a fabulous ingredient for dogs, and one of our favorite ingredients of Bernie’s Perfect Poop too. We’ve got a great Pumpkin Treat recipe you’re going to find so versatile, your dog just might ask for it every day of the year. (Shhh, go ahead and give it to him! It’s good for him!)
Why is pumpkin good for my dog?
First things first. It’s important that you know that a pumpkin is a fruit. Yes, a fruit. It comes from a seed-bearing structure of flowering plants in the squash family and it’s a fruit. Because it’s more savory than ‘fruity’ it is often thought of as a vegetable, but it’s a fiber-packed fruit.
Fiber-packed, you read? That’s right! The main reason we use pumpkin in Bernie’s Perfect Poop is that it’s wildly full of digestion-regulating fiber to help your dog’s gut be its healthiest. It also is loaded with water content and keeps Fido feeling hydrated.
Often veterinarians will recommend some pumpkin to help settle a tummy or if your dog is suffering from diarrhea or constipation. That’s because the soluble fiber content in pumpkin is what adds bulk to your dog’s fecal matter as it’s being digested. This helps make it shoot through the poop chute easier as it’s absorbed more water and it also can help firm your dog’s stool up to keep pooplosions at bay. Hence, digestion-regulating.
But what you maybe didn’t know about pumpkin was that when it ferments in your dog’s gut, it fuels your dog’s cells! It’s true! It creates helpful fatty acids that boost your dog’s cellular energy and that keeps him nice and frisky for you. Pumpkin also helps your dog absorb maximum nutrients and probiotics to create a flourishing microbiome by lowering the pH level in your dog’s large intestine. 
Not to mention, pumpkin is a superfood for your dog! Packed with Vitamins A, C and E, as well as beta-carotene, zinc and iron, pumpkin adds nutrition to your dog’s body to fuel him for all those frisbee chases!
But my dog doesn’t have a tummy ache?
Your dog may not be suffering from gastric distress, but pumpkin is STILL beneficial. Not just for the vitamins it contains, but for the antioxidants that help give your dog overall immune support. As a maintenance ingredient, pumpkin can help your dog’s skin and eye health be in tip-top shape, and can even work to keep his muscles well-maintained. There’s also tons of heart health that pumpkin may bring, and most important to dogs, it tastes delicious! All those qualities make it a perfect ingredient for Bernie’s Perfect Poop!
Pumpkin casserole for my dog?
Yes. Pumpkin casserole for your dog!
Even better, though, is that this is a mix you can add to dog food for some extra deliciousness, stuff into all the Kongs or bones you have for extra treat enjoyment. You can also just give them a little dollop here or there as a treat, freeze it for a frosty yummy or use it on a lick mat. We sometimes place spoonfuls on a cookie sheet at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes and voila! Dog treats full of power!
What will you need for doggy pumpkin casserole?
Basically, not much! We use Steel Cut oatmeal, but you can use old-fashioned or even instant. Just be sure not to use any that has flavoring or sugar added. You’ll need about 42-50 oz.
You can use canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling; just pumpkin) or you can cook and mash your own! That’s a lot of work, so kudos if you do, but we typically stick with a can. Two and a half cans, to be exact (though you don’t have to be) or three medium pumpkins, cooked and mashed.
You’ll want a dozen eggs (we’ll use the shells too) and some coconut oil. Yes, a dozen.
They’re good for your dog, so trust us on this.
We also put ½ tsp of organic garlic powder (NOT SALT!) and ½ tsp of ground cinnamon for taste (neither will hurt your dog, but some dogs find cinnamon a little strong. Just adjust for your dog, as you know him best).
You’ll also want four cups of fruits and vegetables. At this time of year, we love using kale and apples. You can use spinach too, though it might be pricier. You’ll want to cut and coarsely chop both.
Bernie’s Perfect Poop is the last (but most important!) ingredient.
Okay, we know we’re biased, but it really is the basis of what makes this a super awesome and healthy treat! Check out some homemade treat recipes here.
You’ll need about a cup, give or take.
Once you have all the ingredients together, you’re going to need an 8-qt. or bigger stock pot. You’ll put in the water that’s recommended for the oatmeal (usually a 2:1 ratio of water to uncooked oats, but add more water if you need. You get to decide on the consistency for your needs). Cook the oatmeal over medium heat until the water begins to simmer. Then put the fruit and veggies in to cook as well.
As that mixture simmers, break the eggs and add in.
You’ll want to stir so the shells get broken but how much depends on you and what your dog likes. Some dogs love lots of crunch, others not so much. Many start off with low-crunch and then shake it up once their dog’s learned how much they love this mix! There’s lots of health benefit in eggshells!
You’ll cook this for about 2-3 minutes, until it’s looking a bit firm and set. Then, add the pumpkin and Bernie’s Perfect Poop and stir it all over low heat as it returns to a low boil.
The goal is to cook the oats and soften the Miscanthus grass bits some, and you’ll want to stir rather quickly as it will thicken. As it cools, it’ll thicken even more, and it’ll be sticky. That’s what makes it such a great Kong filler!
Once it’s cool, it’s yours to do with as your dog pleases. Our guess is that your dog will be going crazy with the delicious scents, so be ready to give him a bit to try. Save some for topper, freeze some and even bake some–he’ll love it all the same!
The best news is that with every bite of his specially made pumpkin blend, you’ll be giving him an incredible source of great gut health. All of the ingredients work together for maximum nutrient absorption, but it’s the pre- and probiotics and digestive enzymes (in addition to the miscanthus grass, inulin, xylooligosaccharides and pumpkin) of Bernie’s Perfect Poop that will help give him good dog gut health as well.
Working together with the other ingredients, Perfect Poop will help your dog absorb maximum nutrition. It’s an autumn treat that will not just make your dog fall all over himself (see what we did there?), but better, it’s incredible nutrition packed into every bite! That’s what Bernie calls a win-win!