Whenever I have a post with photos showing me eating a bone we get a lot of comments (to Mom's surprise) that people do not feed raw bones to their pets!
Some is personal preference, some is misinformed, and some is just plain not informed!
But don't worry because Mommy and I are here to explain everything!!
Okay so let us start with the facts about Raw versus Cooked Bones:
Now PetMD has an article in which you can read on your own, warning against ANY bone usage. They give an example of how a dog was chewing on a dead animal carcass and ended up having intestinal problems due to eating the bone of the carcass. It is unfortunate that this dog had this problem and it is possible for dogs to choke on bones.
After reading it we decided that it just wasn't all that factual. The case presented is from 1998 and if you read further the dog was eating out of the neighbors trash bin and the other case was eating off of a dead animal someplace.
Neither dog was supposed to eat what they did, neither were properly supervised while eating, and the bones were most likely the wrong size for them. The author then tries to tell you that wolves probably die of bone splinters often...but then goes on to say that 'We don't get many opportunity to do autopsies on dead wolves.' If you cannot do autopsies then how would you know? This article is completely self opinion and not based on facts!!
Sojos talked with Maureen Haggerty about bones and the oral hygiene aspect of them.
Haggerty recommends raw knuckle bones. She advises raw because the cooked are more likely to splinter! The white 'sterilized' bones you can buy from the stores are also not good as they provide no nutrients and won't be as flavor filled as a natural raw bone. (*note mine is only white because it has been licked and chewed on for some time! It did have meat on it at one point!!*)
You might be asking yourself 'why is she recommending the knuckle bones?'
Answer: They are soft and allow dogs to scrape their teeth into the bone which cleans the tooth. Most dogs have a hard time with their front teeth. These teeth are used to pull meat off of bones and this helps keep them clean and healthy!
Positives about feeding raw bones:
-Yummy for your dog
-Doggy gets a mental and jaw workout
-Natural teeth cleaner
Mom could not find any that would hold up to smart people who know how to properly feed their dogs...
Need further convincing? Contact mommy!
If this has convinced your pawrents to let you try a raw bone, excellent! Let Mom give you a few pointers!
-Buy beef, turkey, chicken, or buffalo (kangaroo is an option if you live in AU!)
-Buy bones appropriately sized for your dog. A lot of places don't want to feed hallow bones as they often get lodged in the backs of the dogs throats or stuck around their lower jaw. You can prevent both of these if you buy a hollow bone that is longer and the hollow part is small than your dogs jaw.
Any bone needs to be appropriate to the size and chewing strength of your dog! If you need help sizing, please contact us through our 'contact' tab!
- Raw with some meat on it! Make sure you can make sure the dog stays on the designated bone blanket or in a kennel where you can easily wash residue off. Mason has his own bone chewing blanket that he knows to stay on.
-Limit chewing time to about 20-30 minutes a session until all the meat is off *OR* you have an aggressive chewer. Aggressive chewers wear their teeth down easily and limiting them to 30 minutes a day slows down that process.
-Supervise your dog and put bones up when you can no longer supervise
-Buy small bones when you have a big dog
-Believe that bones will crack your dogs teeth regularly. It does happen but it is usually on bones that are to 'hard' for a dog to chew on.
-Believe that dogs die from bone complications more than they do from choking on kibble or a tennis ball!
-Buy Pork..it tends to just shatter. I have never given Mason a pork bone and never will. They have a weird bone density that just has them breaking easier than other animals.
Lisa Peterson on the AKC website explains that 'Any bone should only be given under supervision so you can monitor if the bone is breaking into dangerously small pieces. If this happens you can ask the dog for the rest of the bone (because you've already taught him the "give" command - right?). Finding an alternative to a potentially hazardous situation is always in you and your dog's best interest rather than leaving it to chance.'