Having a friend as faithful, affectionate, and caring as a dog will inevitably bring much joy to your life. But, when you adopt a pet, you need to first understand that you are taking up the responsibility for the well-being of a living, breathing creature.
Any loving and thoughtful dog owner will know what a bully stick is. As many renowned vets and animal experts recommend bully sticks for canines, it is little wonder that so many pet parents would be looking for less expensive ways to get ahold of their pet’s favorite treat.
So, how do you make your own bully sticks? Well, you certainly can make your own bully sticks, but you’ll first have to find a butcher or slaughterhouse which can provide bull penises. Once you have them, there’s a pretty arduous process for cleaning, cooking, and drying your bully sticks.
But, before we get into the discussion of how you can make bully sticks at home, let’s take a look into what bully sticks are and what purpose these treats serve.
What Are Bully Sticks?
Bully sticks are a single-ingredient, easily digestible chew stick for canines. These chewy snacks are commonly made from bull penises. And yes, you heard that right. Bully sticks are made only from bull penises, and despite their rather repulsive origin, these treats are a general favorite among most dog breeds.
If you’re unfamiliar with the term ‘bully sticks,’ then you might have come across treats by the name puzzle sticks, puzzles, bull sticks, or bull puzzles.
As dogs love to chew, pull, and tug at literally everything, bully sticks provide your pet with hours of entertainment, satisfy their taste buds, and supply them with the benefits of meat-based protein. As mentioned earlier, these puzzle sticks are easy to digest, so your dog won’t suffer from any gastrointestinal issues after chowing down on one.
Bully sticks completely break down in your dog’s stomach, preventing any blockages in the intestines or causing pain to your dog during excretion. So, these treats can be granted not just your adult dog but puppies too.
Additionally, bully sticks are made of beef muscle which is full of amino acids. Amino acids are essential for the development and growth of your dog’s muscles, brain, skin, and coat. Another advantage of allowing your dog to chew on bully sticks is that these snacks are very low in carbohydrates and calories.
Most pet guardians often face the dilemma of keeping their pets off snacks or treats to prevent them from getting obese. But, when you give bully sticks to your fur baby, you don’t have to worry about your pet gaining much weight.
There’s a stronger probability that they will actually burn calories chewing, munching, and chomping on bully sticks, as tough as they are.
It is rare to come across a doggo that is allergic to beef. So, is the safest snack you can present to your pet without fear of allergic fractions. You can even get bully stick options that are completely organic, free of additives, preservatives, and artificial chemicals.
Moreover, the process of chewing on bully sticks itself helps your pup with their buccal health. Bully sticks are considered safer than rawhide-based treats because they don’t splinter, so giving your doggo a bully stick is fundamentally saving your pet from choking hazards.
So, bully sticks are a super healthy and safe treat for your dog, as they are 100% natural and long-lasting.
How To Make Bully Sticks
In order to make bully sticks at home, you must first acquaint yourself with the method of how bully sticks are made conventionally. While the mass production of bully sticks differs from manufacturer to manufacturer, bully sticks are typically drained of all liquid and then cooked.
The process of cooking bully sticks can include two common forms of cooking – smoking or baking. You should know about the techniques used to dehydrate beef muscle and smoke or bake the ingredients.
Making bully sticks at home:
- Acquiring The Raw Materials – You might think that it is a challenging task to acquire a bull’s penis. But, there are many pet guardians out there that make bully sticks at home, so you can simply call up your local slaughterhouse or butcher to get what you need. There are even organic meat shops that will sell you bull penises from animals that are raised on 100% natural feed.
- Preparation – Cleaning a bull’s penis is a three-step process. Initially, you have to trim away any excess fat that you can see on the muscle. This is done to ensure that the calorie count of the muscle fat is reduced considerably. Then you need to cut right through the center of the bull’s penis to release all of the liquid such as urine that might still be inside. Finally, you have to soak the meat in clean water and then thoroughly rinse it multiple times to prepare the meat for cooking.
- Cooking The Bully Stick – Most people don’t have access to a smoker, so once you get your hands on one, you can stick the bully stick into one and cook it through smoking. But, when you take the baking option, you will have to cook your bully stick for several days (at least three-four days) at 170°F. Cooking the meat for so many days and at this temperature ensures that the muscle is entirely dehydrated. By doing so, you will make the bully stick last longer. The more dehydrated the meat, the chewier it becomes.
- Chopping Down – The preferable size for most bully sticks is 6-9 inches in length. You don’t want to hand all of the bully stick to your fur baby all at once; the piece that you do give will last a fairly long time and the other piece can be stored for later.
If you’re looking to make bully sticks at home, then may you have the very best of luck at making the treats for your beloved pet.
But, you should prepare yourself for the arduous challenge that you have set for yourself, as making bully sticks at home requires hours of hard work and some serious dedication.
What Are The Alternatives To Bully Sticks?
If you aren’t happy about offering your fur baby a bully stick, say if you’ve just found out what they’re actually made of, then you can just as easily look for other healthy alternatives. Moreover, some dogs have very delicate stomachs and are unable to digest beef.
Pet parents of such doggies have to look for wholesome alternatives. Here are a few examples of wholesome snacks that will keep your fur baby happily occupied with chewing for hours.
- Chicken Chews – you can take some boneless chicken thighs, place them on paper-lined baking sheets, and bake the chicken at 180°F for 2-4 hours. You simply have to ensure that the chicken is completely dehydrated, and if it is, it’ll serve to be a delicious and healthy treat for your fur baby.
- Carrots – There’s no denying that your doggo might not appreciate a carrot stick as much as a bully stick. But, it is a super healthy snack and it serves to improve your pets’ skin, nails, and vision.
- Deer/Elk Antlers – These snacks are perhaps the most long-lasting and delicious treat that you can offer your four-legged friend. But, you must remember to be present when you offer deer/elk antler to your fur baby. Antlers like bones can splinter and cause choking hazards.
- Cow Ears – Another natural, single-ingredient and healthy treat for your fur baby are cow ears. These too are readily available from pet stores if you wish to buy them for your faithful companion. Or, you can make them at home too and cow ears are free of artificial chemicals or smoking agents.
- Lamb Weasand – All natural gullets from US free-range lambs. These treats are very nutritional and about 8-10 inches in length. These snacks are high in glucosamine which is greatly beneficial for buccal health. However, these are not very long-lasting chewable snacks.
Being a pet parent means that you ensure that your fur baby gets the very best of care that you have to offer. When it comes to providing snacks to your doggo, it’s a smart move to present a natural treat that satiates your pet’s taste buds, soothes their urge to chew, provides dental benefits, and makes your dog stronger and healthier.
But, there are many pet parents out there who prefer to make bully sticks at home rather than buy some commercially-made bully sticks to prevent offering a treat to their pet that might contain chemicals, additives, or preservatives.
If you’ve made up your mind to make bully sticks at home for your fur baby, then you need to make certain that the bull penis is completely dehydrated, thoroughly cleaned, and baked for long hours to make sure that the bully stick you’ve made lasts long and brings your fur baby endless hours of munching and chomping.
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