Puppies and Peanut Butter

Regardless of how old your puppy is, you likely need peanut butter. For example, my nearly 16 year old “puppy,” Sky, needs twice-daily meds. For years, I’ve been transferring peanut butter to a small resealable container and using a mini Milkbone to scoop up a tiny bit of peanut butter. The pill is smooshed into the peanut butter, where the willing little guy will happily gulp it down. This works great when the container is really full, but by the time it gets down to the bottom, it looks gross and I invariably get my fingers in the peanut butter smeared on the edges.

TheOldWay

Not only is this unappetizing, it gets peanut butter on my hands!

About two months ago, we adopted an 8 month old puppy, Cooper. He needed Kongs filled with peanut butter during crate time when I leave the house. The obvious way to fill it (to me) was to take a large scoop on a knife and try to putty it into the Kong. This does work, but it doesn’t allow going back for a little more with the same knife. Nor does the knife get very clean, and wiping peanut butter off of the knife is yet another piece of work I find annoying. [Note: I have a collection of plastic kid’s knives from Ikea. They aren’t sharp at all, and have a wider blade, making them a nice putty knife. Then I can put that one down for Sky, who is now occupied while I get Cooper crated. Unfortunately, if I forget to pick up the knife when I return, Cooper will find it and deem it a wonderful chew toy.]

After seeing the extremely expensive cans of treats to squirt into Kongs, and then visiting my daughter who decorates cookies with a myriad of pastry bags for icing, I put two and two together and came up with an inexpensive way to manage the peanut butter mess. Just put it in icing bags! And it works great.

Disposable icing bags are available at your local craft shop — be sure to find a 40% (or more) coupon, and get the 100 count for probably $20. You can find them online much cheaper, like less than $4 per hundred, but you’ll have to wait up to two weeks. The Wilton ones (at the craft shop) are much thicker and can likely be reused a time or two (provided they aren’t too messy), but the cheaper ones are quite thick enough and are larger. You can even find reusable piping bags at grocery or discount stores — these are fine, but cleaning them is a pain.

Here’s the best way I’ve found to fill the bags:

  1. Microwave the peanut butter for a few minutes to get it nice and runny. My 40oz jar takes about 2:00 on power level 5 (of 10), with a quick stir, then another :30 (and I’m impatient by now and do that on high). Don’t get too impatient, as you can melt the jar, which can become misshapen and ooze hot peanut butter all over your microwave! Try to be patient, and use half power in minute increments until it’s pourable but not too hot.
  2. Find a pint glass or some container that is similarly shaped.  This will become the holder for the bag while you fill it.GlassAndBag
  3. Put the icing bag on your hand like a puppet, then push it into the glass. You want to displace the air in the glass with your hand so the bag is open.HandInGlass
  4. Carefully remove your hand, leaving the bag in the glass. Cuff the bag over the glass so it’s held open.ReadyToFill
  5. Pour the peanut butter into the bag. There should be about 3″ of a cuff, so you can fill it to the very top. Give the glass a gentle shake or two to release any air bubbles and top off if needed.Pouring
  6. Using a twist tie, rubber band, or piece of string, tie the top of the bag closed. You want the top closed tightly, so when you squeeze it, it doesn’t ooze out the top.

Repeat until the peanut butter jar is empty. A 40oz jar fills about three and a half bags.

AllFilled

To use, snip off a tiny bit of the point. To spritz some on the end of tiny biscuits, you might want to snip where the width is about 1/8″ to 1/4″, depending on how large the pill is, and whether you need to cover it or just glue it to the treat. To fill a Kong, you might want to go to 3/8″, which pumps in a nice, thick ribbon of peanut butter.

You’ll note that on one of the bags in the photo, I’ve added a coupler. The coupler is nice if you’d like to use a tip, which is easier to keep clean. I gave up on that, because I go through them so quickly. A quick wipe with a part of a paper towel will keep it clean. Another use for a coupler is to use a tip cover. Useful if you need to travel, but not necessary.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s