To assist dog owners in finding a healthy, safe and preferred way for their dog to satisfy a chewing urge two options are often compared. Understanding the pros and cons of providing dog bones and chews for your pet is helpful in deciding which is the best option for your dog.
There are different options in dog bones and chews. Dog bones are typically actual bones, usually beef bones, but they can also include things like chicken or turkey neck bones, wild game bones or other similar types of raw bones. As a general guideline, pork bones are not provided for dogs.
Most dogs love raw bones, but they can cause digestive upset and diarrhea in some puppies and dogs. This is most commonly associated with dogs new to raw foods. Dog bones can also quickly go rancid in hot temperatures, and they can attract flies and bugs. Bacterial contamination of any type of raw meats is also a concern.
Dog bones are messy to have in the house. Dogs do need to be monitored with raw bones, and they should be removed if they splinter or when they become a potential risk of a choking hazard.
Dog chews include products that are processed and formed. These types of products are often made of rawhide, but there are much healthier options available. Rawhide is the non-nutritious inner layer of hides, and it is bleached, chemically processed and then rolled, formed, flavored and baked before being marketed.
A healthier option in dog chews uses natural, real ingredients and completely eliminates the use of any rawhide. Look for chews that are made from chicken, pork skin and other healthy ingredients like milk and peanut butter.
When choosing between dog bones and chews, keep in mind that the healthy, rawhide-free chews are 100% consumed and fully digestible. They can be eaten indoors or out and are never messy, making them an ideal choice.