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Bones Don't Love Dogs


Without a doubt, dogs love bones. Chewing is very important to dogs, because it helps keep their teeth clean, their gums healthy and gives them something to do. Most pet owners like to give their dogs bones for these reasons, and also because it makes dogs happy to receive a fun and tasty treat.

But not every type of bone is good for dogs. In fact, most household bones such as those found in turkey, chicken, pork chops and steak can be very dangerous for dogs to eat. This is because they break and splinter easily. Swallowing large or sharp pieces of bones can lead to an intestinal blockage or puncture and could cause internal infection, bleeding, the need for surgery and in some cases, death.

Instead of giving your pet bones that are left over from family meals (cooking also softens bones, making them more hazardous), think ahead by getting your dog an appropriate chew bone from your local pet supply. The best ones are the sterilized natural bones, which are very strong and inexpensive. A dog who is large or a powerful chewer might still be able to break off pieces of the smaller sized bones, so it’s important to choose one appropriate for your pet’s size and chewing intensity. Click here for great prices and selection on dog bones, toys, and other pet items.

There are many other types of bones to choose from, but it is wise to use careful consideration when making your selection. Rawhide bones, pig’s ears and other “real animal” chews are widely used but also have potential hazards. Because they are parts of real animals, there have been cases of salmonella, e-coli and other diseases being carried on these products.

Also, if pets rip off large chunks and swallow them whole, intestinal blockage or choking on soggy pieces can be a danger. The same applies to edible corn starch bones, Greenies or any other type of edible dog bone.

So what’s a pet owner to do? Give up giving your dog bones altogether? Of course not! While you should never give your dog poultry, pork or beef bones from your home kitchen, the sterilized natural bone is an excellent alternative. Other durable choices include appropriate-sized hard plastic Nylabones, Galileo bones and thick-sided marrow bones from your local butcher (boil these first for just a few minutes to kill any bacteria). Click here for great prices and selection of bones, toys and pet supplies.

If you’ll be supervising your dog while chewing, you can also allow the other types of store bought bones mentioned above. Just keep an eye out for large pieces getting ready to come off, and make sure your dog is well-trained so you won’t have a problem taking it from him if you need to.

Like most other matters in life, a little forethought, supervision and training can avoid illness or heartbreak. As holiday season comes upon us, be sure to pick up a new bone for your dog so you won’t feel sorry throwing out the ones from family dinners!