Yogurt Dog Treats: An Easy Pupsicle Recipe Dogs Will Love
Pupsicles. Pup cups. Froyo. No matter what you call them, this easy two-ingredient yogurt dog treat recipe is favorite with our a pack! In fact, Chloe (my red Goldendoodle sidekick and happy taste tester) loves frozen pupsicles so much, I’ve made them for her birthday in place of a dog birthday cake.
If you’re looking for a super-simple, no equipment needed, no clean-up required, two-ingredient frozen yogurt dog treat, we’re happy you’re here. We’ve stirred up two versions of pupsicles for you.
Can dogs eat plain yogurt? A veterinarian explains
First, let’s talk yogurt. I learned about plain yogurt pupsicles from Dr. Julie Buzby, a friend who is an integrative veterinarian with 20+ years of dog expertise under her stethoscope. As part of her dog nail trimming course, she recommended freezing plain yogurt to give as a distraction during dog nail trims.
Chloe was definitely up for enjoying this special treat as I learned how to safely cut her black nails.
I thrilled to learn about this treat, but wanted the 4-1-1 on yogurt. It is ok for dogs? What are the health benefits? I reached out to Dr. Buzby to learn what makes yogurt different from other dairy products. As a veterinarian, she offered this explanation:
“Many dogs would be considered “lactose intolerant” because they don’t produce very much of the enzyme needed to break down lactose. So, in general, I don’t recommend dairy products for dogs.
However, yogurt is a fermented product. As a part of that process, lactose gets cleaved into smaller components so there’s actually not much lactose in yogurt. Even so, I would not recommend it as a “staple” in a dog’s diet. But plain yogurt makes a great treat because it is safe, potentially beneficial, and generally dogs love it!” – Dr. Julie Buzby, DVM, CAVCA, CVA
Chloe gives a paws up and couldn’t agree more!
Since plain yogurt frozen in a cup is on my short list of high-value treats, I experimented by adding finely diced strawberries and mashed bananas to the plain yogurt pupsicle.
And spoiler alert: Chloe’s favorite concoction is plain yogurt topped with diced strawberries sprinkled on top. It’s her “berry” favorite! 🍓
Pupsicle preparation tips: check the yogurt label
Next, let’s dive into what to look for when choosing yogurt. It’s important to check the label. Here are some things to look for:
✅ Choose plain yogurt.
The yogurt I used only had one ingredient listed on the label: cultured nonfat milk.
✅ Do not choose flavored yogurt. Flavored yogurt is loaded with sugar. Also, flavored yogurt may include xylitol, which as I explain below, is highly toxic to dogs.
✅ Do not choose any yogurt that contains xylitol. This artificial substance is HIGHLY TOXIC to dogs. Let me say it another way: it can kill dogs. 😭
BTW…I try to avoid bringing any food, gum, or candy containing xylitol into our home. The risk is just too great. If you’re wondering what items contain xylitol, check out Preventive Vet’s 700+ products that contain xylitol.
What about fruit?
What about fresh strawberries or bananas for dogs? Here’s what I learned:
✅ Washed strawberries and peeled bananas are a treat for dogs who don’t have any pre-existing conditions. Plus, fresh strawberries and bananas offer health benefits and both contain vitamin C. For more information on fresh strawberries or bananas as a treat, check out PetMD’s article Which Fruits Dogs Can and Cannot Eat.
Chloe has no pre-existing conditions and she’s not overweight, so strawberries and bananas as a treat are a healthy choice for her. Of course, since fruits contain sugar, moderation is key.
How to make pupsicles: Frozen yogurt dog treats
Disclaimer: Pupsicles are not a replacement for a dog’s meal, they are treats. If you are unsure about any of the ingredients, you can substitute with another ingredient that you’re comfortable giving your dog. As with all treats, moderation is key. If you have any questions about what to give your dog, always talk with you veterinarian.
Now that we’ve gone over the importance of choosing the right foods, here’s how you can make easy, 2-ingredient frozen yogurt dog treats.
What you’ll need:
- Finely diced strawberries or mashed bananas.
- Non-fat plain yogurt (I prefer non-fat plain Greek yogurt since it has lower levels of lactose. )
- Small paper cups such as Dixie® cups. Or, you can use dog bone or paw print-shaped silicone molds.
1️⃣ Wash, stem, and dice strawberries. Set aside.
2️⃣ Spoon plain Greek yogurt into Dixie® cups.
3️⃣ Sprinkle finely diced strawberries or mashed bananas on top of the yogurt. Smooth the top.
4️⃣ Place in the freezer for approximately five hours or until frozen.
If needed for stability, place the filled cups on a baking sheet before setting inside your freezer.
5️⃣ Try to explain to your pupper why she has to wait for the pupsicles to freeze.
This is the hardest part of making these tasty yogurt treats…
6️⃣ When ready to serve, peel the paper away from the lip of the cup. Holding the paper cup in your hand, let your dog lick the treat.
Continue peeling the paper away and supervise your dog as she licks the treat so she doesn’t eat the paper cup.
7️⃣ While the paper cup helps contain the mess and gives you something to hold, pupsicles are still messy…
…which makes for an adorable photo op!
8️⃣ I usually make six frozen yogurt dog treats at a time.
Chloe and Little Bear each get one treat at a sitting. In fact, sometimes Little Bear finishes his first and enjoys a lick or two from Chloe’s treat…
9️⃣ Extras may be stored in the freezer for later.
Tip: Write the expiration date of the yogurt on a sticky note and slip it into the freezer container along with the frozen treats. It will save you from quizzing yourself later on how long you’ve had them in the freezer.
When to give your dog yogurt dog treats
What are some times you might want to whip up these yogurt yummies for your dog? Here are a few ideas:
🐾 If you’re looking for dog birthday ideas that your dog will love, pupsicles are an easy (and still cute) alternative to a homemade dog birthday cake.
🐾 Are you planning a backyard staycation? Pupsicles make a cool treat after an afternoon of playing games with your dog. (If you’re searching for fun things to do with your dog, check out my article: 14 Games to Play With Your Dog.)
🐾 Need a treat that’s so tasty it distracts your doggo? I use pupsicles as a high-value treat to keep Chloe occupied and happy during her nail trims.
- Finely diced strawberries
- Non-fat, plain yogurt. I prefer non-fat, plain Greek yogurt since it has lower levels of lactose.
- Wash, stem, and finely dice strawberries. Set aside.
- Spoon plain yogurt into small (3 oz. or less) paper cups.
- Sprinkle finely diced strawberries on top of yogurt.
- Place on a tray in the freezer for approximately 5 hours or until frozen.
- Serve to your dog by peeling back the paper lip on the cup.
- Securely hold the pupsicle in your hand while your dog licks it.
- Continue peeling away the cup as your dog licks the treat so that your dog doesn't eat the cup.
- Store extra pupsicles in the freezer for future.
Not a fan of strawberries? Substitute with finely diced banana.
It’s been a treat!
It’s a joy to share this pupsicle recipe with you. Whether you and your doggo are in the kitchen whipping up treats or just hanging out together, we hope you and your furry pal enjoy endless fun and friendship.
Thanks for stopping by. Hugs and happiness to you and your pack!
Do you enjoy making treats for your dog?
We’d love to hear! Please comment below.