You would be forgiven for thinking that it is perfectly natural to give dogs bones to eat and that our canine friends have always chewed on them in the wild. If the truth be known, it is quite dangerous to offer dogs any sort of bone especially when they've been cooked in any way because it could seriously injure them and may even prove fatal.
Large or small, a bone can present lots of dangers to dogs
You might think that offering a larger bone to your dog would be okay, after all they would not be able to swallow it whole. The problem is that even the tiniest of splinters can do a lot of damage to your pet's innards which could see you having to take them to the vet as a matter of urgency. Your dog may even have to undergo some sort of surgery to put things right! The thing to remember is that dogs will crunch away at a large bone and shards will come off it which your pet will swallow!
Dogs chewing on bones can result in them suffering from the following injuries:
- Their teeth could get damaged and chipped which would result in an expensive trip to the vet so the tooth can be removed before it causes any more problems and pain to your dog
- Your dog may well injure their tongues and inside of their mouths which results in them bleeding profusely all over the place. Again, if the bleeding will not stop, you would need to get your dog to the vet for them to investigate the problem and put things right
- A bone can get snagged around your dog's lower jaw which can be very stressful for them to have to cope with. If it gets well and truly stuck, you might need to get a vet to help you remove the bone and again this could prove costly!
- A bone or part of it could get lodged in your dog's throat and they will attempt to sick it up, causing damage to the inside of their oesophagus
- Small bits of bone and bone splinters can do a lot of damage to a dog's windpipe which means they would have trouble breathing and would need veterinary attention as a matter of urgency
- A bone could get stuck in a dog's stomach simply because it cannot pass through the intestines due to the fact it may be a little too big. This can cause a serious blockage which may need to be corrected surgically!
- Bone fragments can be responsible for dogs being constipated. Any sharp bits would seriously damage not only a dog's intestines, but their back passages too. Just going to the toilet would be extremely painful for your dog!
- If a bone fragment damages a dog's rectum, it can cause quite serious bleeding and again, you would need to get your pet to the vet as a matter of urgency to stop the bleeding and to make sure your dog is made comfortable
- Should any sharp fragments damage your dog's abdomen it can lead to a very serious and often extremely hard to treat condition known as peritonitis. Again, a dog with this condition should see a vet immediately, because it is considered to be life-threatening!
Choosing a safe alternative
There are lots of alternatives to give to dogs, but it always pays to buy products that are made by well-known pet food manufacturers and not be tempted to buy any cheaper ones from a market stall or online. You should also keep an eye on how your dog chews anything, making sure they are not doing any damage to their teeth which happens all too easily!
If you have a roast dinner or some spare ribs cooked on the barbeque, it's never a good idea to give your dog any of the bones, but instead to put them straight in the rubbish bin making sure your pet cannot get at them. You should never leave any bones where a dog can get at them. If you are out on a walk with your four-legged friend whether in a park or out in the countryside and they are off their leads, it's a very good idea to keep an eye on where your pet's nose takes them because they may well find a dead animal and a bone or two! Dogs and bones do not go together well and it could mean an expensive visit to the vet if your dog gets hold of one!