What Bones are Safe to Give to a Dog?

By Sandra Petersen


Owners have fed their dogs bones for years and delighted in seeing how their pets seemed to enjoy their treats. However, questions have recently arisen over whether raw bones are safe or if dogs need bones at all.


If the dog chews off large chunks of bone, swallows them and has to have surgery, it can cost the owner hundreds of dollars in veterinary bills.


Proponents of the BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food, or Bones and Raw Food) diet believe a dog can have raw beef bones. Some veterinarians say a dog should have no animal bones, but allow for synthetic bones made of rubber, nylon or rawhide.


According to Dr. William Fortney with the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University, the owner should consider whether his dog is a chewer or a large chunk swallower.


An owner may think a raw bone gives her dog some nutrition, but the bone itself and the collagen in the bone cannot be digested, according to experts at Dogs do not require bones for good dental health either.


Bones from poultry can splinter and lodge in a dog's throat or cause internal tearing in the digestive tract. Pork chop bones have sharp ends which can do the same thing. Round steak bones can accidentally slip over a dog's lower eye teeth.
Comments (57)
Aug 9, 2009 nmeza84
Ya I think its better not to give your dogs any bones so you wont have problems.
Aug 13, 2009 Saul
i agree because i have bullies and if u give them any bone they could get constipated
Aug 15, 2009 kidzrule551
I thingk is ok to give your dog bones from the pet shop
Aug 15, 2009 Shadowmonkey
Raw hide bones seem to be just the ticket for my lab. The nyla-bone makes a mess in the house and patio.
Sep 2, 2009 Wally2007
Well, dogs have eaten bones for centuries w/o any problems because it's natural! and recently vets decided they should not... Give me a break! It is more to push people to buy expensive chemical-made fake bones then increase their margin, more than to care about our dogs' health, I think. My 2 dogs have a beef bone once a week. I boil it before just to kill any germs or whatever, and they love it!
Oct 27, 2009 Vichka
This article is so full of crap! Dogs evolved eating bones! Just because they live in houses and sleep on couches does not mean they need to eat processed food laden with chemicals! You tell me that a Nylabone is better for my dogs then a chicken back! My guys have been eating raw meat and bones for over a year and the diet has done wonders. Not every bone is appropriate for a dog. The marrow bone are indeed bad for the teeth, but raw chicken, turkey, rabbit and some others are wonderful. All the talk about how dogs can't eat bones is just an marketing scheme full of lies to get you to buy a crappy product that does nothing but harm to your dog! Then once the dog is sick, it is taken to a vet, so in the end, the pet food/toy/chew manufacturer is happy and so is the vet - they only losers are you and your poor dog! Also, almost every kibble/wet food fed dog develops dental issues by the age of 2 - This is horrible! Appropriate raw bones clean the teeth like no other artificial bone ever would.
Dec 2, 2009 Ashleyalice
i think the only the bones that id give my dog are always from the pet shop.
Dec 13, 2009 Brigite
Well!Well. What ever all of you dicide to give bones or not it's all up to you. Even if you never give your dog a bone it will not be less then what it is. My dogs don't get bones and they are not misable. They are there unconditionaly.
Dec 15, 2009 DogoMama
My dog has a sensitive stomach. Although he loves to chew rawhide bones, he throws them back up hours later. He throws up ALL bones. He's a large-chunk swallower too. I have to get him smaller bite kibble 'cause he tends to scoop & swallow. One woman told me that raw bones were better than cooked/dried ones because they don't splinter as bad. I've given up on giving him bones in general, his stomach just can't handle it. Surprisingly though, his stomach is okay with bullysticks and moo-tubes, snouts & ears. Go figure. BTW, anyone who says that a synthetic, rubber or nylabone full of chemicals is better than a natural one, has got to be out of their mind. Seriously, that's like saying food from a vending machine is better for you than an organic meal.
Dec 28, 2009 wolvesrule4ever
I agree with Wally2007. Just don't feed them chicken bones, that can cut their insides......
Dec 31, 2009 dogworld93
I've been feeding my dogs raw bones for as long as they've had they're adult teeth! Look at it like this. Dogs are really just domesticated wolves, and wolfs eat raw bones. You may have it all backwards if I do say so my self. I once tried feeding my dog cooked bones to find they splintered and gave them loose poo. As for the nylon bones. That thing is horrible! When they chew it they are going to digest some of it! I've seen a lot of sensible articles that suggest the nylon my create very serious health problems! Once again I must impress in you that if the dog really is just a domesticated wolf then they may eat what wolves eat...and that includes raw meat and bones! If you read this whole thing and still don't believe me then I feel very sorry for you're dogs...
Jan 13, 2010 Imanidog
Acually straught raw bones are just fine most of the time. However it's cooked bones that cause problems. They get softer and may splinter and get laughed in their throughts or bellies causeing what can be serious problems. And feeding dogs bones may not be a problem but theres no harm in skipping the bones...
Feb 8, 2010 Silverfox
I feel it's a bit ridiculous to feed our dogs bones because their wild relatives eat them. Have you seen a wild animal up close? They are diseased, parasite-ridden and live shorter lives than our domestic companions. We shouldn't be feeding raw bones for the same reason we don't eat raw meat- concern for bacterial and protozoal contamination. Even if it doesn't make you sick, they can pass it to you-there have been scientifically documented cases of humans becoming very ill or even dying from this, and thats not counting the dogs who have died of bacterial infection such as salmonella and e coli. I just don't feel it's worth the risk. I'd way rather have my dog work a treat out of a Kong-while yes, it's rubber- bearing in mind they are not consuming the rubber, just chewing it. Cooked bones aren't worth the risk either. I've seen bowel perforations occuring in dogs that is immediately life threatening and requires expensive surgery to save the dog's life. not worth the risk, in my books.
Feb 8, 2010 dogworld93
Silverfox I found your sentence saying "We shouldn't be feeding raw bones for the same reason we don't eat raw meat- concern for bacterial and protozoal contamination" not making much since. I mean dogs are a different species from us humans. Just because WE can't eat raw meat doesn't mean dogs can't eat raw meat! You also said that dogs in the wild are "diseased, parasite-ridden and live shorter lives". Well, the fact that they are parasite-ridden and diseased as nothing to do with their diet and the same goes to shorter lives. They live shorter lives due to predators which includes us humans. I will continue to feed my dogs raw bones and will do so for as long as I live. NOTE: I am not trying to offend anyone. I am merrily stating facts.
Feb 15, 2010 sylviad
If you want to give your dog bones, choose the round beef bones, known as knuckle bones. They are less likely to splinter than all other bones. Also, avoid lamb bones. I made the huge mistake of giving them to my dog until he chucked up a triangular shard once. Imagine if he'd swallowed it, the damage it could have caused. So knuckle bones it is. Ask your butcher if you don't know what they are.
Apr 12, 2010 Waterlemon
I think dont give any dogs any bone just to be on the safe side XxX
Jun 18, 2010 vianne09
even chicken too...the splinters of it is small and your dog might choke...
Sep 25, 2010 pups'n'me
Give your dogs bones, or don't... They don't know the difference. Yes it is a natural thing. I don't think all bones are bad for your dog, but I definitely agree with the poultry thing, they splinter way to easy, chicken/turkey bones are VERY dangerous for dogs. But like many of you have said, dogs have lived with bones over thousands of years, I'm sure there is some reason they are so attracted to them, not just for meat but its instinct. There is a natural upside to why they are doing it, else they wouldnt do it. Like Sylviad said above, knuckle bones are safe, and common bones from cows are good, its a solid chunk of bone that won't splinter and harm your dogs stomach... Or if you don't want to, don't feed your dog bones, its simple as that...
Oct 6, 2010 DogoMama
Doesn't matter what type of bone I give my dog, he throws them all up. Then he gets severe diarrhea. I won't even tell you how the t-bone steak bone came out... after many attempted painful tries. So, I've sworn off all bones for my bub.
Oct 16, 2010 pablocordova626
I wonder if either the author, or the people commenting have ever had to take their dogs for a dental cleaning. If you have, then you probably feed your dog some form of kibble, or let them chew on solvent cured rawhide. Scienti fic or anecdotal debate aside, Anthropology doesn't leave much room for debate. You see, our well coddled poochie friends, Canis lupus familiaris, is in fact only cosmetically different than it's progenitor, Canis lupus, the wolf. That being said, all of this non sense about raw bones or raw meat being bad for dogs is simply that, non sense, that comes from sources that have obvious motives to lie about the subject...the dog food industry. Why would the people that are involved in the manufacture of a product that is SUPER INEXPENSIVE to produce with hefty profit margins not be involved in spreading disinformation about the food that's actually beneficial to your dog? Look, the point is simply. Wolves are carnivores, and they eat raw meat, organs, and bones. They don't eat rice, oats, wheat, or vegetables, and are in robust health. Your dog is biologically no different than a wolf. Anyone else that tells you different is a scumbag that's trying to make money off the fact that you own a dog.
Oct 18, 2010 kian
Raw Marrow Bones are just fine to give. Dogs do well with it and digest the raw meat and marrow just fine. I never worry about problems with the raw meat as it never sits long enough to rot. They clean the bone in one sitting and my butcher actually feeds his own dogs the bones. Never ever cook or boil, it can cause the bones to weaken and splinter. DW is correct in her posts. As for teeth, it most certainly helps the tartar that forms. My Aussie was getting some tartar and now it is gone and YES my vet supports this.
Nov 4, 2010 mazodvm1
I am a vet, and NO, the advice I am about to give has nothing to do with making a profit off you or your dog. (How insulting!) I have seen dogs on raw diets become VERY ill from bacterial infections, dogs with bones caught in their throats, dogs with intestinal perforations due to bones. You wouldn't give a dangerous toy to a child just because he or she enjoys it, why would you do that to your dog? Yes, bones will keep your dog's teeth cleaner, but so will nylabones, rawhides (also not completely safe though), and brushing your dog's teeth.
Dec 6, 2010 Beautiful Bully
Mazodvm1, I have a question you are a vet. My puppy I believed swallowed a bone whole will her acids in her stomach break it up? She seems fine shes eating and drinking and playing but her stomach is extended. HELP!!
Dec 9, 2010 dogworld93
masodvm1, I have seen more of my friends dogs get ill from packaged dog food than raw food. The packaged dog food that is considered "healthy" is full of wheat (fattening), sprayed on vitamins (do not improve health), and animal byproducts (very dangerous for health)! Personally I care more about my dogs health than what commercials, and companies (who will gain a lot if we choose to buy from this) say. I'm sure you mean well, and you probably won't even listen to what I say, but this is what I think. I know most people don't give their dogs bones or anything like that. However, dogs are the wolves cousins, who eat raw meat and bones. So, why should dogs be different? I feed my dogs on the a diet that includes bones and they are very healthy. They've got soft coats, clear eyes, a spring in their step, and have no health problems. Now, maybe it's just my dogs, but they do a lot better on their diet right now than when I used to feed them packaged food and no bones. Of coarse your dog/dogs might do better on the packaged food. I don't want to start any wars with anyone. So, if this offended you (which I really hope it did not) then please, by all means, keep feeding your dogs the same way. I really do not want to make anyone upset...
Dec 14, 2010 jeff88
i think its ok to give your dog rib bones or petshop bones
Jan 4, 2011 webdesigner
the only 'animal related' chew my dog gets is a bully stick I don't worry about injury, cracked teeth,etc. They can be expensive, but last long and dogs love them
Jan 10, 2011 Bichylove
I made the mistake of giving my dog a ham bone. He was in excrutiating pain and I had to rush him to the animal hospital. $800 later I say NO BONES IF THEY HAVE THE CHANCE OF SPLINTERING! It's just not worth the risk.
Jan 12, 2011 Frooper
I think everyone has valid points, but I think there are few things that still need to be considered. Granted that dogs are the genetically the same as wolves, you have to keep in mind dogs have been domesticated for a long time. Simply put, if you put a dog out in the wild today, it may have survival instincts, but will not have the same survival skills they once had, or the skills a wolf may have. So just because a wolf can eat raw meat and bones, does not mean that a domesticated animal that has been used to eating processed foods for hundreds of years can handle the meat, or that their digestive and immune systems will be able to handle the germs and diseases that can be found in raw foods. As far as the concern on plastics and chemicals in nylabones, you must remember that YOU also consume these harmful chemicals. Chemicals in plastic food containers seep into your food when you microwave it, etc. Like it or not, these chemicals surround us in our daily lives, as it has become a part of the way we live. I'm not saying either way is right or wrong, we let our dogs chew nylabones, and have, on occasion, given them knucklebones. By saying they shouldn't have nylabones because of the chemicals, is to say that they shouldn't have ANY toy. Also, a point to consider is not just dental health, but mental stimulation bones and toys can give dogs. Most dogs have a fair amount of energy and are not exercised as much as they should be and become bored very easily. When bored, dogs become destructive. Bones and toys provide a good way for dogs to exercise (chasing a ball) and focus their attention (by chewing bones). I think people just need to think a little more in depth on these issues.
Feb 19, 2011 Crouton
Frooper I respect your opinion but regardless of the fact that they have been domesticated or not you said it yourself "dogs are genetically the same as wolves" therefore they metabolize food the same way and just because we have tamed the wolves so their outward appearance has changed because we bred dogs for tameness, their mitochondria and DNA is 99% similar to their wolf ancestors. If I follow the same logic about your statement that their digestive and immune systems not being able to being used to eating processed foods then if our society has been only eating McDonalds for 100 years then our descendants won't be able to eat fresh fruits and vegetables because our stomachs can only break down processed foods... even though our bodies digestive systems are exactly the same. Does that make sense logically to you? And yes chemicals do surround us but is it that wrong to limit the amount that I can for my dog and me? I limit the chemicals that I take in as much as I can so I try, in the areas that I can control to not "let it become a part of the way we live." Although I do agree that they do become destructive when not exercised and the people should have a little more depth in these issues as well. Especially since I have been feeding raw for 5 years and have a 9 year old that gets mistaken for a puppy.
Apr 1, 2011 03Dgroves
I run a website where I send rawhide dog bones through the mail. Every bone is Vet approved, USDA and FDA inspected. I'm pretty sure most companies do the same.
I thought hard about whether to comment or not as my story is only one case but it's very personal and I hope it is taken seriously. I owned a shih tzu for five years, and I spoiled her quite a bit. She disliked dry food and I felt bad feeding her the same thing every day, so she got a mix of "raw" food from the pet shop. It was expensive, but the ingrediants were simpe, organic and healthy foods (primarily meat, grinded bone and veggies), there were different flavours to give her variety, and she loved it. In addition, she got table scraps and the occasional bone from the kitchen table at supper. At first she chewed the bones carefully, but over time her small breed teeth deteriorated and she began swallowing bigger chunks. My mom grew up on a farm so she thought nothing of feeding bones to the dog, and we all continued feeding her a healthy raw diet with occasional bones. She was very healthy looking, and her teeth were clean, but the bones damaged her teeth over time so she chewed less. Several times we gently hymelicked her when she was lightly choking, but thought nothing of it. One day, the end circle of a chicken bone detached and logded perfectly in her throat. She couldn't make a sound, couldnt breathe, began to panic. We hymelicked her, nothing worked, we sped to the car to rush her to the vet, but she passed out on the way so we tried to remove the bone surgically, eventually resulting in CPR, but she died. It only took 5-10 minutes for her to lose consciousness, and another few minutes to die. She was only six years old. I still think a raw diet is healthier than dry or canned food, but for the sake of your dog grind up the bones beforehand. I can't get over the guilt of feeding her bones when so many sources told us not too, but we just thought it was more "natural". Shih tzus are so small, their teeth are cramped in their mouth and they are prone to all sorts of dental problems. Many small breeds have been bred far enough away from wolves that this makes a difference. My advice: don't feed bones that can be swallowed or bitten into pieces to any dogs just in case. The vets see these cases every day, they warned me, and I was one of the unlucky owners that adored my dog, but took the alternative approach i thought was healthier. Just don't do it.
May 10, 2011 kitcaepup
We give our dogs very large beef bones from the local meat processing place. We freeze them and on hot days the dogs love licking and chewing on them.
May 16, 2011 Berly:-)
I know hat rawhide is not good for dogs
Jun 12, 2011 WackoWoody
I've always bought beef bones for my 4 dogs . Stupid me ! I own a cattle farm & cyotes & wild dogs sometimes kill the calves (9 last calving season ) . Now we collect fresh bones and store some for use later . The dogs have always brought old-dry bones home from the fields & pastures anyway . This way, I don't lose & waste the entire $300.00 calves as bones cost $4.00-$11.00 .
Jul 8, 2011 Salty Doggy
Like the song says, "Nick Nack Paddywack give the dog a bone."
Jul 25, 2011 babydog
Each dog is individually different, Some dogs can tolerate raw feeds others cant. But it us as humans that are causing the food intolerances in our dogs by over feeding and the wrong stuffs. A dog is an animal and has animal needs. Back in the day, dogs had few health problems they where fed scraps and left overs, offal etc etc. The diets allowed dogs to mature slowly and consistently with no surge of proteins and over absorption of calcium. I have fed both processed food, raw feeds and bones. the dogs that are fed raw beef,tripe chicken and bones etc have better health, shiny coats good skin and teeth, therefore healthy on the inside. The dogs that where feed processed kibble and tinned food did not, however they where still healthy just not as healthy. My dogs love raw chicken wings, i have never had any problems with this feeding regime, the stools are always firm with less matter than on processed feed diets I have had a dog that could not tolerate eating RAW bones and so I would give him dried fish skins instead. Currently I have a young dog that appears to be unable to manage processed feeds at all so she may be going onto the barf diet. Dogs are designed to eat raw meat and bones. processed foods can led to liver and kidney problems to name a few, some have far to many E numbers, colours and far to high in protein that cause dog to become hypo and look under weight. Always check your labels. Check out the BARF diet and be informed. I have also know Roast bones from the pet shop to cause poorly tums and sickness due to them not being processed correctly.
Jul 28, 2011 Really?
To all of you saying that since dogs are descendants of wolves and since wolves eat bones then dogs can eat bones too, here's a little fact for you: wolves will eat as much of their prey as they can with the exception of major bones and sometimes the hide. All major bones include leg bones, spine, skull, ribs. Of course, small parts of bone would be consumed in the process of feeding, but wolves will not, as a habit sit and consume a whole bone. Usually their aim is to strip a bone clean. Another little fact is that the alpha male and female get the best parts of the carcass. Members below them feed next, some fighting will ensue amongst them, leaving the WEAKEST members of the pack with the left-overs which are usually nothing more than a few strips of meat, tendons and ligaments on bones. And if I'm not mistaken the weakest members don't usually have a high survival rate. Conclusion: wolves consider bones as left-overs and will not eat major portions of them unless absolutely necessary. Now, let me list the pro's and con's of giving your dog bones for you. Con's: T hey may fracture their teeth. They may get lodged in the mouth, or throat, or anywhere along the intestines which can be fatal. They may splinter and get stuck anywhere along the digestive tract, or worse tear it (can you imagine having your guts spilled in your belly?) They may cause constipation. Pro's:&# 13; Your dog's teeth, (if, that is, the bones haven't fractured them), will most likely be clean. But let me tell you a secret. They would be just as clean, if not in a better condition, with a daily brushing. All you dog lovers, why don't you devote a few minutes of your day to your beloved pet and brush his/her teeth?
Oct 27, 2011 kaylaaa.xx
No bones are safe to give dogs as i found out today with a big vet bill! please dont feed bones to your dog, can make them constipated, cause internal bleeding .... Please dont
Nov 16, 2011 seajay
I just spent $1,088 dollars at the vet on my 5 year old beagle. He was very sick and did not eat for 6 days. Diagnosis - lacerated digestive tract which could only be caused bones - and I have never given him a chicken bone - so it had to be a rawhide or femur bone. Thankfully, he is fine now - but he won't be getting any more bones.
Nov 16, 2011 seajay
I use to give my 5 year old beagle rawhide bones and femur bones from the butcher. He recently got very ill and did not eat for 6 days. Diagnosis - lacerated digestive tract that could only be caused by these types of bones according to the vet - I have never given him chicken bones. Thankfully he survived and is o.k. - vet bill = $1,088
Jan 9, 2012 beccafishy
As modern dogs are a result of people interfering in natural selection I would assume that they are more delicate than the " dogs " of yester-year. It's really pitiful that we bred such wimpy dogs that they can't even handle chewing bones...
Jan 26, 2012 CanvaspetCrew
Dogs have not changed much, but our understanding as pet owners have and the desire to keep our pets healthy has created an industry with so many more options of chew toys and foods than what we once had. Dog Bones and rawhide are hard to digest and are risky business, which many have experienced first hand from what I have read. Now that there are safer chew treats like bully sticks and nylabones, I don't even take the chance. I like to think of it as how we used to raise children. We didn't have child seats for them, they used to sit in the front too... seemed safe back then, but ask an ER physician how many children they would have coming in from car accidents back then versus now? Its a risk, and who is willing to chance it when there are safer ways to do things.
Jan 27, 2012 mareBARE
Are dehydrated (homemade) chicken bones safe for dogs? thanks- Mare
Feb 9, 2012 SpencerEP
This article is very frustrating. Our dogs are wolves. I don't see wolves eating a bowl full of kibble with no enzymes and minimal nutrients in the wild. Dogs are biologically designed to be able to eat RAW meat, as well as RAW bone.
Feb 12, 2012 adelatoast2
"According to Dr. William Fortney with the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Kansas in Manhattan, the owner should consider whether his dog is a chewer or a large chunk swallower." The College of Veterinary Medicine is at KANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY in Manhattan, KS. Big difference, especially if you're an alum of one or the other!
Jul 26, 2012 Lacey & Me
So much information = so many choices...I do feed my dog raw meat and bones, and she is thriving on them. The hydrochloric acid in a dog's stomach is strong enough to break down these bones and tissues, and raw bones are softer than cooked bones. In my opinion, bones should not be given to dogs when they have been cooked (bbq or boiled). Since a dog's stomach is tougher than ours, and since dog's are primarily scavengers (dogs are not wolves, and would prefer to scavenge rather than to hunt), they can digest foods that have, in our human opinion, spoiled. In fact, if dogs could speak, they'd tell you: the smellier the better! Commercially prepared pet food is a money machine. Dogs and cats do not tolerate grains well, and its a fact that dogs end up with nasty skin conditions and/or ear infections because of an intolerance to corn (worst offender) and wheat or other grains. Dogs can digest raw fat easily, but not rendered or cooked fat. They can develop pancreatic problems from too much cooked fat (cats handle cooked fat better). The key thing to remember that before there were pet food companies, before there were can openers, before humans befriended dogs, they lived in the wild foraging, sometimes hunting (they have to eat), and a health dog is not disease ridden. Feeding them human grade raw meat is good for them. I supplement my dog's diet with raw rib bones (both beef and pork), raw chicken backs, necks, but not wings (always take into consideration your dog's size when choosing the raw bones). Bones in a dog's diet supply them with calcium and aids in digestion. A dog eating raw meat and bones small enough to eat makes for less messy and smelly stools. If your dog gets slightly constipated from the bones, it's because he/she is not getting enough meat. There are great kibbles out there that are protein/vegetable based. They cost a bit more, but because there are no grains, your dog will eat less and feel better, have more energy and be less prone to diseases. It is still up to the owner to decide, but for me, I figure that providing my dog with a healthy diet means less trips to the vet. Keep in mind that the pet food/veterinary/pharmaceutical industry is there to make money. Read the ingredients on your pet's food. Meat by-products mean parts normally inedible (hooves, feathers, etc). Meal means ground up stuff... powdered meat...yuk. All he best... Lacey & me!
Oct 18, 2012 Vet!!!
Not bone are digested
Nov 8, 2012 katie678
I agree with he above, lacey, my dogs have had raw meat and bones all their lifes, since I brought them home at 8 weeks, they are now 12 and 13, they are heathy still and love walks, I havedogs for 30 yrs and was feedng all the horrble petfood,til I wised bout commerical pet food, pleae google nd rea THE TRUTH ABOUT COMMERICAL DOG FOOD, how it full of rd kill, even dead cats and dogs, full of dead desised amimals, honesty ITS all a scam, YOU FEED YR POOR DOGS this and they will not be heathy, if you really are against raw meat and bones, then google home cooked dinners for your cat or dog, you will save money not only on food but on vet bills, and yr dog will love you for it
Nov 20, 2012 loriclyke
to the lady that fed her shih tzu chicken bones,. sorry for your loss, i too have a shih tzu and feed raw bones. you have to feed bones bigger than the dogs head. so no choking can occur. or remove the smaller parts when the chicken bone is near done. as for the rest. you need to feed non weight bearing bones or your dogs teeth will break. read the proper material on feeding raw meaty bones and you won't have these issues.
Dec 19, 2012 petra.duransmith
I have a ~ 1 year old Aussie/Catahoula hound mix. He is a big chewer. I gave him a big rawhide bone (bully bone) form the Whole Pet store. He loved, loved, loved it. BUT 1 day later he had diarrhea, and for 1 whole day he pooped blood!!! The vet checked him and we kept an eye on him. Approx. 24h later his stool went back to normal, w/o meds. Thank God, we were lucky! I cannot give him any rawhide anymore, but now he chews everything under the sun....esp. my SHOES! He has all kinds of chew toys, but I would like to stay with something natural. Any ideas? Has anybody experience with deer antlers - they were recommended by the Whole Pet store owner. Thanks.
Feb 2, 2013 eddie323
Would grinding down raw bones make a difference in the safety aspect of feeding a dog? I am considering purchasing a food grinder-which is also capable of grinding bones-to go along with a raw diet for my dog. Does grinding bones make it safer for their dietand digestion, since splintering and perforation of the digestive system come into play? I would appreciate feedback on this thought.
Apr 3, 2013 jadiepie23
bones are bad not for all dogs but why risk it cooked or not, 2 of my dogs have died in the past because of bones the first was the bone got stuck in her intestine and the second he had bone chips in his stomach i will not give any of my dogs bones ever i try telling my friends not to but unfortunately they do and recently my friends dog was rushed to the vets with the same problem i just hope she will be ok
Apr 6, 2013 argylesox
I think there is a simple solution to this issue. Do not give your dog soft bones, ie. tbones, pork chop or steak bones, chicken bones, fish bones, or any other similarly soft bone. I have been giving my dogs hardened femur bones for over 40 years without a single stomach issue. I buy smoked femur bones from my local butcher/sausage monger. The whole femur bones are smoked for 6-8 hours at 250F which allows for complete cooking of the marrow and additional hardening of an already very hard bone. I cut them into 4-6 inch lengths with my band saw ( any fine toothed saw will probably do). My dogs, (Goldens) are occupied and amused for long periods of time with the smoky flavored bone and the tasty marrow center. Generally each bone lasts 4-6 months, some longer. Their teeth and gums are always clean and healthy. Once the marrow is licked out of the bone I replace it with peanut butter, liverwurst, or chopped chicken dogs. Keep softer bones away from your dogs and you should never have a stomach problem.
Sep 5, 2013 92GTA
I go to the butcher and buy beef cattle hip bones, still have tons of fat, cartilage, and meant on them. My previous golden of 15yrs loved them and my puppy golden just got his first at 11wks this past Sunday. I keep it in the freezer to the meat doesn't rot and flies don't get to it. I only bring it out a few times a day for him for up to 30mins for him to go to town on. He only is allowed to knaw on it on the living room floor in front of me. Then right back in the freezer. There is nothing wrong with this, plus this is by FAR the safest type of real bone a large dog could have.
Sep 16, 2013 Jeff G.
I have a half Akita and Border Collie.... Akita are very close cousins of wolf. I don't feed her chicken bones because factually they are hollow. Beef bones I would say have the least incident. I always freeze any cooked bones to at least harden them up a bit. I give her bones on occasion. She is addicted to whatever doggie crack China put in Dingo products. Too much raw hide as well as beef or pork ribs. Pork constipates me even. I give her bones sparingly every couple days till the supply is gone and sometimes not for months. "Everything in moderation" like someone wise said long ago. I would think smaller breeds may not digest them as well... Everyone makes good points could crack a tooth like us chewing on ice or nuts. I do mix some real food with hers some beef stew or something, chicken soup homemade stuff I eat myself. Purina which she has been on for forever I think is fattening and is like eating Mcdonalds... Oh and someone said "Processed dog food has been around 100 years"... That's a lie it wasn't common place till after the industrial revolution and the World Wars are the reason people were cutting back feeding their dogs prime rib and steaks probably before the bankers wanted your dog's food instead and will come for yours soon enough...
Dec 9, 2013 minciepie12
i would never feed my dog bones again after changing our dogs diet to a raw diet we feed our dog raw lamb on the bone two days later she was so sick we had to have her x rayed to check for blockages and blood tests to check her organ functions. the bone did not break down in her stomach as we saw when she vomitted, there are so many conflicting opinions online saying its safe and not safe it is not worth the risk i feel so guilty for putting my dog through this i suggest if a raw diet is want you think is best stick to cheap cuts of steak, mince and products from petstores but don't risk cooked or raw bones
Sep 18, 2014 dogyear
There is a level of zealotry with raw food proponents that is on par with that of hardcore vegans and organic food nuts. To say that dogs are like wolves and therefore can eat whatever wolves eat is not untrue, but totally misses the point. We humans too were capable of eating raw meat, even now to a certain extent. However, like most animals, no matter how well they do on their "natural" or raw diet, the cooked version is generally much safer and much healthier. If this is not the case then humans would still be on a strictly raw diet. Hint, we are no longer on a strictly raw diet. Please do not use bad science or anecdotal evidence such as, "I feed my dogs raw meat and bones and they are perfectly healthy!". That's great for you and your dog, but it is worthless. Anecdotal evidence is not accepted as science under any circumstance. There is a guy that is not overweight, but holds the world record for eating the most big macs ever. He still eats at least one a day. Good for him! The science still says that that is probably not a good diet to maintain your body weight. In most cases, cooked food is more nutritious than raw food even though cooking destroys some of the foods nutritional content because it increases the food's bio-availability. Dogs are not obligate carnivores so they can eat stuff other than animal products, but they are still carnivores. So veggies cooked to mush is much easier for their gut to extract nutrients. I'd wager this is is also true of cooked meat. The same is true for humans! A lot of veggies, when cooked, is much more nutritious for us than their raw counterparts; such as carrots and broccoli. Also, wolves hunt as well as scavenge. They are perfectly capable of digesting human refuse, which includes wheat, rice, fruits and vegetables. In short (not really short...), give your dogs the bone if you like, but don't try to pass it off as science or evidence that it's the best thing for your pet. Also insinuating that vets are in collusion with the pet food industry is quite insulting.
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