All About Marie

Animal Files columnist of the Orange County Register from 1992-2016; Emmy Award winning producer of Educational Television Programming; Host of "The Pet Place Radio Show" heard world-wide at; click the player below to listen. Producer/Director/Editor/Co-host of "The Pet Place TV Show" during the 19 years it ran on KDOC TV in Los Angeles and Orange Counties; Wife, Mother of five kids, Grandmother of two baby boys and one baby girl, and pet parent of two cats, one dog, many fish, and a cockatoo.

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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Pet Therapy & Peanut Butter Treats

Dear  Marie:
I have adopted a five year old Papillon mix named “Mikey.”  He’s only 13 pounds; but I see a lot of potential in him and I plan to socialize and train him and use him as a therapy dog.  I think that there is a therapy dog association in Orange County.  Do you know how I can get in touch with them?  Also, I can’t find a recipe for healthy peanut butter dog treats.  The recipes that I have seen call for lard and bacon grease and awful stuff like that.  Do you know of a good recipe?

Shauna, Brea

Dear Shauna:
Orange County Paws 4 Healing is an organization that provides “pet therapy” for patients in care facilities in this area.  Their website is  PAWS, Orange County SPCA is another great group to look into and they are always looking for volunteers.  Visit their site at

The Delta Society’s Pet Partner is more national in scope, but they can still provide a lot of resources to get you pointed in the right direction. They can be found here:

It is wonderful that you plan to do this.  Individuals confined to convalescent hospitals and other long-term care facilities greatly enjoy and benefit from visiting pets.  Animals provide a special “therapy” that doctors and drugs can never give.

As far as healthy peanut butter treats...try this one out:

(Preheat over to 400 degrees)

1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup soy flour
1 tbs. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup peanut butter (sugar free; smooth or chunky)
3/4 cup milk.

Combine wheat and soy flour, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, whisk together peanut butter and milk until well combined and smooth.  Fold peanut butter/milk mixture into dry ingredients.  Mix well to form a soft dough.  Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface.  Knead easily.  Roll dough out to 3/8”-1/4”.  Cut with a bone shaped cookie cutter or make small squares with a knife.  Place biscuits 1/2” apart on an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake fifteen minutes or until lightly browned.  Store cooled biscuits in refrigerator.  Share with your canine friends, ....mmmmm! (And healthy too!)

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