Doggie Bags

DIY Project

Between 5 and 7 million animals enter shelters each year. Animals can become homeless because they are abandoned, lost or never had a home. These strays go to animal shelters to be housed. Your family can help by making and donating doggie treats.

Note About Volunteering at Home:

The impact of COVID-19 continues to change our daily lives and routines, but the volunteers that nonprofits rely on are more important than ever. The following project can be modified to do at home and delivered via mail or drop off to adhere to the social distancing guidelines set by local and national authorities.

We encourage you to connect with the nonprofits and NGOs in your area for the most impactful ways to donate and any specific safety guidelines they may have. To get started, you can check out your local Points of Light Global Network affiliate or Points of Light Service Enterprise, or search the web for local 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations. Be sure to ask:

  • “Would your facility be open to receiving this project I’m working on at home once it’s complete?”
  • “Are there others way I can help?”

What You Need:

  • Ingredients for homemade dog treats (see below, or use your own recipe).
  • Plastic bags (to put the treats in)

Ingredients (Makes about 5 dozen)

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/4 cup brewer’s yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium canned chicken stock, plus more for brushing


  1. Call a local animal shelter and ask if they would be willing to accept your treats.
  2. Consider getting other families in your community involved! Send invitations to neighbors or friends and ask them to join you in making and donating doggie treats.
  3. Buy ingredients and supplies.
  4. Make the dog treats. You can either use this recipe or one of your own.
  5. Cooking instructions:
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, wheat germ, yeast, and salt. Set aside.
    2. Place oil in a large bowl. Add stock and flour mixture in three alternating batches, beginning and ending with stock. Mix well.
    3. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out dough. Shape biscuits using a dog-bone-shaped cookie cutter or by cutting around a store-bought dog bone with a butter knife.
    4. If desired, you can spell out a message in the dough with a toothpick (wet the toothpick first so it won’t stick).
    5. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets. Repeat with remaining dough.
    6. Bake biscuits for 10 minutes. Brush with stock; rotate baking sheets, and bake 10 minutes more.
  6. Turn off oven, leaving door closed. Let dog biscuits stand in oven to dry completely, about 1 1/2 hours. Wrap as a gift, or store in an airtight container at room temperature.
  7. Clean up.
  8. Donate the treats to the shelter you selected.

Reflection Questions:

  • Have participants connect after the project is over. Challenge each family member to come up with five words that describe the day’s experience in response to the questions below. If more than one family is involved, consider forming teams.
  • Why was it important to do this project?
  • How did you help?
  • What was it like to volunteer with your family?
  • What was the funniest part of the experience?
  • What volunteer activity would you like to do next?
Download The DIY Project PDF