Are bones bad for puppies teeth? Expert Advice

What is the real story about bones and dogs?

It is a myth that dogs need to chew bones. While dogs want to chew, and most would love to chew on bones, bones are dangerous and they can cause serious injuries.

Drs. Evans, Wooten and Fegan recommend the following to dog owners and dog sitters to keep canine teeth healthy:

Better Chew Choices The best chew treat and toys for your dog are large enough so as not to present a choking hazard. You’ll also want to look for those that don’t splinter and some that may even offer a dental health benefit. “Be sure to look for the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) Seal of Approval on any dental treat that you purchase,” Dr. Evans advises. “VOHC certifies treats and toys that are proven to reduce plaque and tartar on your pet’s teeth.”

Not all bones and chew toys are created equal — some are bad for canine teeth! Heres what you should know about spoiling dogs without spoiling their teeth.

Dr. Eva Evans, a veterinarian who provides emergency after-hours care at Rivergate Pet Emergency Clinic in Nashville, says the toys and treats to avoid are those with a hard texture. “Avoid giving your dog metal, hard plastic, bones or other extremely firm objects, as these are most likely to result in a painful, broken tooth,” she says. “Oftentimes, dogs enjoy chewing so much that they will overdo it and can cause dental trauma to the mouth.”

“The best thing you can do is check your pet’s teeth periodically and have a full dental exam with your veterinarian annually in young pets and every six months if your pet is older,” Dr, Evans notes. “If you notice anything unusual, including blood, chipped or broken teeth, excessive wear, discolored teeth, or anything abnormal, be sure to have your pet’s mouth examined.”

What Are the Risks of Giving Bones to Puppies?

Puppies in the teething stage can crack their immature teeth on a hard object like a bone or hard toy, but they can gnaw on harder materials when the teeth are fully grown. When your puppy is old enough to chew bones, it’s best to check with a veterinarian to ensure the dog’s teeth are strong enough to handle a raw bone or hard toy. However, a large number of veterinarians are opposed to feeding any type of bone to dogs.

Although real bones have benefits like preventing your belongings from being chewed, many vets believe the risks of injuries outweigh the benefits. Since there are so many alternatives to bones, your vet may recommend using edible toys or chew toys rather than bones. Whether you choose a natural bone or toy for your puppy, be sure to supervise the animal closely to ensure it does not choke or swallow a piece.

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The phrase “throw a dog a bone” exists for a reason. In the old days, it wasn’t uncommon for pet owners to give their dogs a raw bone from their chicken, t-bone steak, or whatever one might be cooking up in the kitchen. While this might seem like a convenient solution to keep your dog busy and satisfied, raw bones can be dangerous and unhealthy for dogs. There are a lot of detriments to giving dogs raw bones, whether they are cooked or not. Raw bones can lead to gastrointestinal disorders, vomiting, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, choking, and even death. Most vets and dog experts agree that instead of giving your pet a raw bone, it is better to opt for an edible synthetic bone or hard chew dog treat.