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Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

Can chewing bones damage a dog's teeth?

My girlfriend just rescued a beagle mix who, we've discovered, is obsessed with chewing on bones. It's great that it keeps him busy and from damaging other stuff, but I worry that long term chewing could damage his teeth.

Specifically, I'm talking about those bones you can buy at pet stores that are filled with some kind of meat flavoured treat. Once he's managed to get the filling out, then he just chews the bone. These are not fresh bones. They're pretty dried out and hard.

Googling it seems to bring up a variety of opinions. Does anyone here actually know if this is potentially a health risk to the dog?
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bluebaron2
Stuff Happens
Premium,Mod
join:2001-02-01
North of 44
Reviews:
·Xplornet

A hard bone such as you're describing Styvas See Profile won't be harmful to your dog. Scrapping his teeth on it's hard surface can help in keeping his teeth clean by scrapping off the tartar.

Stay away from any bone he can splinter ( chicken / Pork / etc ) the shards can lodge themselves in his throat or stomach.

Wolves have been chewing on bones for millennia and they very rarely have to go to the Vet.
--
bb2

Since I've given up hope I feel much better.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

said by bluebaron2:

A hard bone such as you're describing Styvas See Profile won't be harmful to your dog. Scrapping his teeth on it's hard surface can help in keeping his teeth clean by scrapping off the tartar.

Stay away from any bone he can splinter ( chicken / Pork / etc ) the shards can lodge themselves in his throat or stomach.

These are all beef bones. I noticed that Ren's Pet Depot sells naturally shed deer antlers that are guaranteed not to splinter or chip. But that would imply that they are even harder than bones, and this leaves me with additional worry that it could cause tooth damage. I mean, I could give him large stones to chew on and they wouldn't splinter or chip either, but that's probably not a good thing.

Wolves have been chewing on bones for millennia and they very rarely have to go to the Vet.

lol! Yeah, but I doubt they go back to a dried out carcass months later and obsessively chew on the bones.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)

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dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON
reply to Styvas

we buy our dogs bones as well...as BB2 said, it is good for them to chew on...the best type of bone is a natural bone (often from beef) you can usually get from a butcher...this way, it won't have any "fake" food in it and will be somewhat natural (the store bought "white" bones are bleached, which might not really be the best for a dog to put in their mouth)...there are some "real" bones sold at certain places that are specially treated to ensure there isn't any bacteria, etc on them as well...some butchers might give the bones away for free, or charge little for them (otherwise, they just toss them or perhaps sell them for soup stocks or something like that, obviously WE can't eat them)...the only problem with those "fresh real bones" is they can be messy, so they are usually left outdoors only.
--
Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can't eat money - Native American proverb



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

said by dirtyjeffer:

we buy our dogs bones as well...as BB2 said, it is good for them to chew on...the best type of bone is a natural bone (often from beef) you can usually get from a butcher...this way, it won't have any "fake" food in it and will be somewhat natural (the store bought "white" bones are bleached, which might not really be the best for a dog to put in their mouth)...there are some "real" bones sold at certain places that are specially treated to ensure there isn't any bacteria, etc on them as well...some butchers might give the bones away for free, or charge little for them (otherwise, they just toss them or perhaps sell them for soup stocks or something like that, obviously WE can't eat them)...the only problem with those "fresh real bones" is they can be messy, so they are usually left outdoors only.

I used to buy frozen soup bones for my dog to chew on and never worried about these because they were fresh bones. But they are, admittedly, a little gross after an hour or so, and I know my girlfriend would find that tough to have indoors. (Since there's no fenced area for him to spend time outdoors, all his chewing happens inside.)
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"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)

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Devanchya
Smile
Premium
join:2003-12-09
Ajax, ON
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
reply to Styvas

My dog had one bone that lasted him all 15 years of his life. He loved that bone and wouldn't touch another one.

Every so often you hear him Drop it just to hear it make a noise. I know it was the Thigh from a Cow... huge ass bone.
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dsanfte

join:2005-03-15
UK

1 edit
reply to Styvas

Are you for real? A dog isn't going to hurt himself chewing on a beef bone.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

said by dsanfte:

A dog isn't going to hurt himself chewing on a beef bone.

And I've found websites that say it's possible, but I don't automatically believe everything that I read on the internet.


andyb
Premium
join:2003-05-29
SW Ontario
kudos:1
reply to Devanchya

My dog has his big ass bone from a few years back also.He also drops just to hear the noise.Usually in the middle of the night lol.Sometimes I fill up the ends that he chewed off with peanut butter.Thats keeps him happy for hours



Steve
I know your IP address
Consultant
join:2001-03-10
Foothill Ranch, CA
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to Devanchya

said by Devanchya:

I know it was the Thigh from a Cow... huge ass bone.

Make up your mind: was it a thigh bone or an ass bone?


Wolfie00
My dog is an elitist
Premium
join:2005-03-12
kudos:8
reply to Styvas

I wouldn't worry about his teeth at all -- dogs' teeth are amazingly strong and he knows enough not to hurt himself. The dangers are (as already said) bones that might splinter (chicken bones being the classic absolute no-no) and bones that might contain stuff that is bad for him. If you have roast beef sometimes, a big bone from a roast of beef that you've generously left a bunch of meat on is a really nice treat for a bone-loving dog! You might also consider various chew-toys that he might enjoy. Some dogs have their favourites that they are never without, and some of the chew-toys have ridges that are supposed to help clean around their teeth -- don't know how well that works though. But I wouldn't deprive him of his bones -- dogs and bones are a natural!



--
"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity" -- a corollary of Murphy's Law
"A dog is like a child who never grows old ... always there to love and be loved" -- Aaron Katcher


Steve
I know your IP address
Consultant
join:2001-03-10
Foothill Ranch, CA
kudos:5

said by Wolfie00:

(chicken bones being the classic absolute no-no)

Alternatively, if your neighbor has a dog that WILL NOT SHUT UP, you could offer a tasty meal of chocolate-covered chicken bones


dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON

1 recommendation

BOOO!!...coming from an American, i figured you would have simply said something about shooting the dog, with one of the numerous firearms you have stashed in the closet and the nightstand.
--
Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can't eat money - Native American proverb



Last Parade

join:2002-10-07
Port Colborne, ON
reply to Styvas

what? no



Robert
Premium
join:2002-03-11
St John'S, NL

1 recommendation

reply to Styvas

Response from my better half (vet)

Beef Bones are fine, all other bones off limits. For whatever genetic reason, beef bones do not splinter.
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It's one thing to listen to an idiot talk. As soon as you respond, there are now 2 idiots having a conversation.



andyb
Premium
join:2003-05-29
SW Ontario
kudos:1

Really.My dog has been chompin on pork bones for about 10 years.Not puny ones like ribs but the bigger ones.Never a problem



dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON
reply to Robert

said by Robert:

Response from my better half (vet)

Beef Bones are fine, all other bones off limits. For whatever genetic reason, beef bones do not splinter.

not quite.

the key to bones is that they must not be cooked...a cooked bone can splinter (yes, even beef)...beef bones are simply the most common for the fact they are readily available and often of a decent size...there are many bones you can give your dog, but NONE of them should ever be from cooked meat...to play it safe though, an uncooked beef bone will be trouble free.
--
Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can't eat money - Native American proverb


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

When I look at the bone that he's been chewing (it's definitely beef), he's managed to gnaw off the tiniest little pieces, but nothing that is worrisome. By "tiny pieces" I mean maybe a millimeter square or so. Nothing that would lodge in his throat.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to Robert

said by Robert:

Response from my better half (vet)

Beef Bones are fine, all other bones off limits. For whatever genetic reason, beef bones do not splinter.

So, according to your better half, there should be no reason to worry about tooth damage? Obviously I understand the concern about splintering, but in this case it's obsessive chewing of a bone that won't splinter. Is that okay for a dog?
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"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)

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koira
Keep Fighting Michael
Premium
join:2004-02-16

Our previous 2 dogs both chewed stones once in a while, needless to say they had chipped teeth from it. First one was Border collie, second was Border collie / shepherd cross.



dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON
reply to Styvas

they digest the bone pieces properly...those little bone pieces are fine.


theStick2

join:2007-04-09
reply to dirtyjeffer

said by dirtyjeffer:

...
the key to bones is that they must not be cooked
...

QFT

DO NOT COOK BONES!

Instead of buying the ones from the pet store, try getting bones form the butcher. Most butchers (even those at a grocery store) will provide bones for little to no cost.

Alternatively if you are really worried about his teeth wearing, try getting him a Kong chew toy and put something sticky inside of it (Peanut butter works quite well).


Robert
Premium
join:2002-03-11
St John'S, NL
reply to dirtyjeffer

Jeff, my wife is a VET. She has seen many animals come in with splinters. Even people like you who claim to have given said animal a certain type of bone for years with no issue. Yet she is performing surgery to get splinters out because they would not pass on their own/too big to pass.

Don't give me your evidence based on personal experience and experience of friends and friends of friends.

To Styvas, if there is a concern, get yourself a Nylabone.
--
It's one thing to listen to an idiot talk. As soon as you respond, there are now 2 idiots having a conversation.



dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON

Robert, bones can splint...this is why you don't use bones that were in cooked meat...but beef bones aren't the ONLY bones that don't splinter (when not cooked)...i don't know the full list of "safe bones", which is why i said to simply use Beef bones that were never cooked to play it safe...my point was simple that the key is the "Cooking" part...if you cook a big BEEF roast that happens to have bones in it, and give the bones to your dog, it can, and likely will splinter, which could cause the problems your wife has seen...so the comment regarding "Beef bones are safe" is only half true, as cooking them makes them unsafe...what i posted was fact, no need to get defensive about it.
--
Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can't eat money - Native American proverb



Robert
Premium
join:2002-03-11
St John'S, NL
reply to Styvas

No, it isn't fact. Cooked or not, avoid chicken and pork, THEY SPLINTER.



ZZZZZZZ
Premium
join:2001-05-27
PARADISE
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

We used to live on a farm down East ,many years ago ,and had over a dozen dogs [pups included].

Well one day I come home and see the pack of dogs chewing on this huge freaking ''bone''.........on closer inspection I see that it was a horse's leg [hoof included].

We were in the heart of Sulkie racehorse breeders,so all I'm thinking is ,they killed a horse and how much is this going to cost?

Turned out it was a dead horse my neighbor had buried next door but obviously not deep enough and the crazy hounds had dug it up and dragged a leg back..........had a good laugh and a lot of beer later.

But getting back to the topic.........we used to feed them hambones and beef bones......it was like a graveyard with all the buried bones around.
--
~~Get our troops home...now!!~~



dirtyjeffer
Anons on ignore, but not due to fear.
Premium
join:2002-02-21
London, ON
reply to Robert

said by Robert:

No, it isn't fact. Cooked or not, avoid chicken and pork, THEY SPLINTER.

i never said chicken or pork where safe, however, cooked beef bones can splinter as well...did you not read what i posted?
--
Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can't eat money - Native American proverb