Most dogs love bones, and they can be good for your dog’s health and teeth. But be aware of which kinds of bones to feed to your dogs and which kinds to avoid. Sadly 15 dogs have recently been reported dead after eating certain bones. At least 90 more dogs have become ill after eating certain “bone treats.”
The Food and Drug Administration is warning people to be careful with certain dog bones that you may be giving as dog presents this Christmas season. The FDA says that ham bones, pork femur bones, rib bones and a commercial brand of bones called “Smokey Knuckle Bones” are all on the list of bones to not feed your dog. Also, avoid commercial bones that have been smoked, baked, dried or specially flavored.
Cooked and dried out bones can cause internal damage to your dog’s organs. Avoid processed bones all together. The FDA reports that processed bones can cause choking, blockage and internal bleeding.
“Giving your dog a bone treat might lead to an unexpected trip to your veterinarian, a possible emergency surgery, or even death for your pet,” said Carmela Stamper, a veterinarian for the Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) at the FDA. “We recommend supervising your dog with any chew toy or treat, especially one she hasn’t had before.”
Healthy Alternatives To Processed Bones
If you are still wanting to feed your dog bones, then choose the uncooked butcher bone types. The FDA advises that uncooked is a safe alternative to processed bones. Another natural treat to try is elk, deer and moose antlers. Not only can these provide hours of chewing entertainment, but they are healthy for your dog.
I personally keep two large freezers filled with uncooked bones at all times for my dogs. Raw bones are a fantastic source of minerals and vitamins that dogs need. The fact that they love them is an added bonus. Just always make sure to not feed the processed kind.