If your dog loves crunchy treats, these Homemade Himalayan Yak Cheese Dog Chews are a tasty snack for your furry friend.
Even if you’ve never heard of a Himalayan yak chew before, you’ll be able to make natural chew with food in your pantry. Lots of pet parents love these natural treats for their pups, and you will too!
FYI – This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
- What Are Himalayan Dog Chews?
- Are Himalayan Dog Chews Safe?
- Benefits of Yak Cheese Chews for Dogs
- Benefits of Dog Chewing
- Why This is the Best Himalayan Dog Chew Recipe
- Himalayan Dog Chew Ingredients
- Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Equipment Needed
- How to Make Himalayan Dog Chews
- How to Soften Yak Chews and Make a Himalayan Cheese Chew Puff
- Serving Size
- How to Store
- Can People Eat Himalayan Yak Cheese for Dogs?
- More Dog Treat Recipes
- Himalayan Yak Cheese Dog Chews
What Are Himalayan Dog Chews?
Himalayan dog chews are basically dried cheese. It’s called Chhurpi or Durkha and is an ancient recipe developed by the people in the Himalayas (the Himalayan regions of Nepal around Mt. Everest). It was created as human food but folks discovered it’s a great chew treat for dogs.
Chhurpi comes in two varieties, hard and soft. The soft version is used in cooking. The hard version is so hard it’s famous for being the hardest cheese in the world. People enjoy it as a snack, putting it in their mouth to soften it with saliva and then will chew on it like gum. The hard version is also the long-lasting chews that dogs just love.
The traditional Himalayan cheese recipe uses yak milk but it’s not easy to find in the United States. The good news is that it can be made with any animal milk, including cow milk.
The good news is that you don’t have to use traditional methods to make a yak cheese dog chew. You can make them in your kitchen.
Are Himalayan Dog Chews Safe?
Yes. Himalayan yak cheese dog chews are safe for dogs. However, aggressive chewers could bite off and swallow large chunks which could be a choking hazard.
If you have a power chewer, it’s best to supervise and watch over your dog while chewing on the yak bones for dogs.
See below for how to make a soft Himalayan cheese chew puff in the microwave with any of the bits from the treat.
Benefits of Yak Cheese Chews for Dogs
There are so many benefits of making natural chews for dogs. These are just a few of the reasons you’ll enjoy making your pet a hard cheese chew.
- Loaded with Nutrients – Yak cheese chews are rich in calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants. It’s also rich in Omega-3 fatty acids that can enhance the health of your dog’s skin and coat.
- Natural Dog Chew – Homemade yak cheese contains no additives, chemical flavorings, or commercial preservatives. There are only 3 natural ingredients.
- Fully Digestible – Rawhide chews are bad for dogs in so many ways. Rawhide chews can be a choking hazard or cause an intestinal blockage and both are life-threatening. Himalayan dog chews are completely digestible.
- Gluten-Free – Homemade Himalayan Yak Chews are completely gluten-free and contain simple natural ingredients that are great for dogs.
- Virtually Lactose-free – Lactose is almost completely eliminated in the process of making Himalayan yak chews. Lactose is primarily in the liquid whey which is drained out and discarded.
- High Protein – Yak cheese is naturally high in protein which is great for dogs. Protein supplies amino acids to build and repair muscles, skin, hair, nails, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. Protein provides energy and assists in creating hormones and enzymes needed for normal function.
- Low Salt Content – While salt is used in making this cheese, the chews are low in sodium. There is only a tiny amount of salt in each chew.
- Long-Lasting – If you make the chews with skim milk to be hard ones, they can be a great long-lasting chew for your dog.
- Odor-Free Treat – Some pet chew treats mix with canine saliva creating a stinky smell. Bully sticks have a strong smell and are notoriously stinky. The same with cow ears. Yak chews are a great alternative because they are odor free and won’t smell up your house.
- Great for Dogs of All Ages – Yak cheese treats are great for puppies, adult dogs, and older dogs. Depending on if they are hard or soft, they can be great puppy teething chews or soft chews for senior dogs or dogs with no teeth.
Benefits of Dog Chewing
Hard Himalayan chews are a great dental treat because they can help remove plaque and promote good oral hygiene. It’s great for maintaining your dog’s teeth as they age and improving breath by cleaning the crevices around their teeth.
Chewing is a favorite activity for dogs, especially a teething puppy. It’s important to keep them chewing on the right things instead of other objects around the house or in the yard. Chewing can also help with anxiety, boredom, and undesirable behaviors.
Why This is the Best Himalayan Dog Chew Recipe
You don’t have to go to the pet store to buy something that will last a long time. If your dog is an aggressive chewer, make the dog chews harder and crispier. If your dog is older or doesn’t like things that are too hard, make them softer.
These are the best chews to make for dogs because they are so easy! All you have to do is boil, stir, press, slice, and cook.
Plus, they are so good for your dog. When you use natural products, you know you’re making some special chews that are good for your dog’s health.
Himalayan Dog Chew Ingredients
Here are the three simple ingredients you need to make tasty yak sticks for dogs. All of them can be found at regular grocery stores. Here’s the ingredient list:
- Milk is the main ingredient. See notes for which type to use for harder or softer treats.
- Lime Juice curdles the milk. Fresh-squeezed is best.
- Himalayan Sea Salt is a preservative.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
It’s best to use animal-based milk for these dental chews. You cannot use plant-based milk such as almond or soy milk because they don’t contain casein and will not separate into curds and whey.
So, when you’re making cheese dog chews, use cow, goat sheep, buffalo, camel, or yak’s milk. Yes, lactose-free milk works too! Use any kind of cow’s milk – lactose-free, whole milk, low-fat, or skim milk.
The milk you use will affect the texture of the final chew. The higher the fat content, the softer the chew will be. Higher-fat milk can also make the chews crumbly.
Use skim milk for hard chews and whole or low-fat milk for softer chews.
If you use buttermilk, it will change the flavor but it will work too.
If you don’t have lime juice, you can use lemon juice instead. Lemon juice is not as acidic as lime juice, so it will affect how the chews turn out.
If you use vinegar, only use white vinegar. Other kinds of vinegar do not have enough acidity to curdle the milk.
- Large Pot
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- Large Cooking Spoon
- Slotted Spoon or Spider Strainer
- Cheesecloth or Kitchen Towel
- Cutting Board
- Baking Sheet – if baking the cheese.
- Dehydrator – if dehydrating the cheese.
How to Make Himalayan Dog Chews
These are the recipe steps and photos of the process of making yaky chew treats. I hope they help you make this homemade Himalayan dog chew recipe!
You can scroll down to the bottom of this article for a printable recipe card.
- Pour the milk into a large pot. Place it over medium-high heat.
- Bring the milk to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent the milk from scorching.
- Once the milk is boiling, remove it from the heat.
- Add the lime juice.
- Add the salt and stir and stir it in.
- Continue to stir for 2 minutes while the milk separates. Don’t skip the constant stirring during these couple of minutes.
- Allow the milk to sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Scoop out the curds with a slotted spoon and place them in a clean dish towel or several layers of cheese cloth.
- Twist and squeeze out the excess liquid a couple of times to squeeze out as much as you can.
- Place the cloth filled with the squeezed curds onto a dish and put something really heavy on top of the curds. Let it sit for approximately 4-6 hours.
- Remove the pressed curds from the cloth and slice the cheese into your desired lengths and sizes.
- Place the pieces on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet to bake in the oven or a dehydrator rack to dehydrate.
- Oven: Bake at 150°F for one hour. Transfer them to a wire cooling rack to cool and continue to dry for 24 to 36 hours.
- Dehydrator: Dehydrate at 150°F for 12 to 20 hours, turning them after 6 hours. Transfer the dried chews to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Homemade yak chews will not be quite as hard or perfectly shaped as store-bought ones.
How to Soften Yak Chews and Make a Himalayan Cheese Chew Puff
When dogs are chewing on a yak chew, the end of the treat could potentially become a choking hazard. You can take this final chew end piece or any small pieces and turn them into soft yak cheese puffs.
Here’s the easy microwaving yak chew trick:
- Soak pieces in a bowl of water for about 10 minutes.
- Put the soaked pieces on a microwave-safe plate.
- Microwave on high power for 30-45 seconds or up to 1 minute (but no longer than 1½ minutes) and it will puff up into a larger size.
- Let it cool completely before giving it to your dog.
Yak cheese puffs are great because they are soft enough for all dogs to enjoy.
Even though yak cheese is good for your dog to eat, it is still a treat. Pay close attention to the size of your pet when deciding how much to give them. Small dogs should only eat one or two of these chews a day. Larger dogs can eat more. It all has to do with the total calories they are eating that day.
You can also adjust the size of the chews by cutting them in different sizes. Large pieces for a large dog and small pieces for smaller dogs.
Any time you introduce a new food or treat to your pet, watch for signs of an upset stomach, just in case they are sensitive to one of the ingredients. Start with small parts of it.
Be sure to have plenty of fresh water available for your dog to drink after enjoying a chew.
How to Store
Store homemade yak cheese dog chews in airtight containers in the refrigerator. If the chews are completely dried throughout and hard, you can store them at room temperature in a dark place such as a cabinet or pantry.
How long do Himalayan dog chews last?
How long the homemade chews last depends on if they are hard or soft and how much moisture is in them. Soft chews will have more moisture and last up to 2 weeks. Hard chews can last up to 1 year.
Can People Eat Himalayan Yak Cheese for Dogs?
Yes, they sure can! Yak cheese was invented long ago for people and folks still enjoy it today. Give these cheese sticks a try and see if you like them for a snack too.
📌 Pin this to save and share 📌
More Dog Treat Recipes
Do you want to make some more tasty treats for your spoiled hound? Take a look at these:
- Applesauce Dog Treats
- Cranberry Dog Treats
- Dehydrated Sweet Potatoes
- Gluten Free Dog Treats
- Peanut Butter Pumpkin Soft Dog Treats
Himalayan Yak Cheese Dog Chews
- 1 gallon Milk Cow, Sheep, Goat, or Yak
- ½ cup Lime Juice or Lemon Juice or White Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Himalayan Sea Salt
- Pour the milk into a large pot and heat until boiling. Stir constantly to prevent scorching.
- Once the milk boils, remove it from the heat and stir in lime juice and salt.
- Continue stirring for 1 to 2 minutes while the milk separates.
- Allow the milk to sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Scoop out the curds with a strainer or slotted spoon and place them in a clean dish towel or cheese cloth.
- Twist and squeeze out the excess liquid.
- Place the dish cloth filled with the squeezed curds onto a dish and put something heavy on top. Allow it to sit for approximately 4 hours.
- Remove the pressed curds from the cloth and cut it into your desired lengths and sizes.
- Place the pieces on a dehydrator rack or on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet to bake in the oven.
- Dehydrator: Dehydrate at 150°F for 12 to 20 hours, turning them after 6 hours. Transfer the dried chews to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Oven: Bake at 150°F for one hour. Transfer them to a wire rack to cool and continue to dry for 24 to 36 hours.