Thinking about treating your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day? Don’t forget about that special someone who shows you the true meaning of unconditional love every day of the year – your four-legged sweetie, of course!

Although they may not understand the meaning behind the holiday, your pet will surely appreciate the extra love and attention. Also, if you are like many pet owners, you may be more inclined to spoil your furry sweetheart more than the human loves in your life. There is simply no comparison to the loyalty and friendship that comes from a devoted animal companion.

Why not return the love this Valentine’s Day? Any dog or a cat would most likely be happy with an extra snuggle or scratch, but giving them a homemade treat would likely make their day. They also make great gifts for the extended family companions in your life. Your efforts will surely be repaired with sweet kisses, lovey eyes and wagging tails. Here are two basic recipes that will make your pet’s day extra special.

Dog treats

Ingredients:

1 cup flour
1 tablespoon honey
1 egg
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup mashed banana or pumpkin

Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Mix all wet ingredients until smooth. Add in flour until combined. Roll dough to desired thickness and cut into shapes. (Bonus points if you use a heart cookie cutter for Valentine’s Day!) Bake biscuits until they turn a golden brown, or a little longer than you would bake a sugar cookie. Your pup will appreciate the crunch.

Want to ice your cookies? Mix one part peanut butter with three parts yogurt until smooth. Decorate on cooled treats, and don’t forget to refrigerate.

Cat treats

Pampering your feline friend works best when you already know their favorite food. Tuna, wet cat food or even meat-based baby food will make a great treat.

Ingredients:

1 cup flour
12 ounce can preferred meat of choice
½ cup milk
2 tablespoons oil
1 egg

Directions: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour into meat base. Stir in milk, oil and egg until completely blended. Roll mixture into balls. Bake for 10 minutes. Treats should be chewy.

Pet treats are fairly simple to whip up, so feel free to experiment with the recipes based on what you have sitting in your cabinet. While many people foods will work great in this recipe, it is always a good idea to research what is safe for your animal before watching him gobble it down. Any flour will work for the recipe, but wheat flour is generally considered healthier. Oat flour makes a great substitute for animals with gluten sensitivities.

It won’t take much to impress your pet, and you likely won’t even have to make a trip to the store. Whether you have plans this Valentine’s Day or plan on staying home, why not show your pet some love with a treat and an affectionate belly rub. –Brittany Powell

Photo Credit: George Hodan