Bad to the Bone
You’ve probably grown up believing that feeding the bones from tonight’s dinner to dogs is normal and healthy. That feeding bones promotes clean teeth and marrow is nutritionally beneficial for them. It’s the oldest cliché in the book: Dogs love to chew on bones. It’s natural! Well, avocados are natural, too, but any amount of the plant that is so healthy for human consumption can be detrimental to a dog’s digestive tract.
Dogs, being so trusting of us, will eat and chew whatever we give them, and sometimes the bones that we give them with the best of intentions cause them harm. The FDA is warning that this time-honored tradition could be dangerous—and even deadly—for dogs. The most common health concerns linked to bone ingestion are:
- Gastrointestinal obstruction (blockage in the digestive tract)
- Cuts and wounds in the mouth or on the tonsils
- Bleeding from the rectum, and
Hard “round” bones are no different. As well as creating the chance for the other major problems listed, gnawing on bones often results in the cracking of the tips of the fourth premolars. These cracked teeth can lead to root infections and suborbital abscesses that require tooth reconstruction or extraction. Some bones may be dried through a smoking process or by baking, and may contain other ingredients such as preservatives, seasonings, and smoke flavorings. All not good nutrition for your four legged friend to eat.
What can you do as an alternative? Talk with your veterinarian about other toys or treats that are most appropriate for your dog, both size and breed. There are many available products made with different materials for dogs to chew on. At Foremost, we recommend supervising your dog with any chew toy or treat, especially one she hasn’t had before, and if she ‘just isn’t acting right,’ call your veterinarian right away! Let’s keep our fur babies safe. Together.