My Puppy Swallowed A Rawhide Bone

It all depends on whom you’re listening to. The question “how long does rawhide take to digest in dogs?” can give you anything from mild discomfort to full-on mid-life crisis.

On a more serious note though, the pet community seems to be divided on just how digestible rawhide is and whether, therefore, it is safe for dogs to consume. But there has been some research done on this and the quick result is that:

In this post, as we work to answer the question — “how long does rawhide take to digest in dogs?” we will touch on every important conversation that has been had on this. In the end, it would be left to you to decide whether or not rawhide is something you’re comfortable with your dog chewing and ultimately ingesting.

Companies who advertise their rawhide say it’s great for your dog’s teeth and some experts agree too. According to this school of thought, rawhide can help to scrape away plaque and control the buildup of tartar. Additionally, rawhide is said to be great at improving doggie breath not to mention keeping your dog occupied for hours unending.

To learn other ways to keep your dog’s pearly whites in pristine condition, click here to read our article on dog dental care.

Can you give puppies rawhide?

Main Points To Be Aware Of: If My Dog Swallowed Rawhide Strips, What Do I Do?

Even if you don’t have time to read through the rest of the article (though you really should!), here are some key points to remember if your dog has swallowed rawhide strips:

  • If your dog swallowed a rawhide, it may be at risk of a life-threatening complication. While it’s possible for a dog to pass rawhide pieces, sometimes a dog will either choke or suffer an intestinal blockage which are both emergency situations.
  • It’s important not to panic if your dog happens to swallow a rawhide. However, it’s still important for you to take quick and immediate action. First, ensure your dog isn’t choking and take away any remaining rawhide pieces. You should then contact your vet or take your pooch to an emergency vet clinic.
  • As we mentioned before, rawhide treats are NOT easy to digest. This is why dog owners should avoid giving their dogs rawhide and choose a safer alternative.
  • Does Rawhide Break Down In A Dog’s Stomach?

    It’s totally possible that swallowing rawhide will lead to nothing more than a minor stomach ache, so not every scenario is guaranteed to be a troublesome one.

    However, rawhide treats don’t break down readily in a dog’s stomach- and that’s precisely the problem that has to be contended with.

    Rawhide has a tendency to expand in the stomach as it draws in moisture, and will then pass through the digestive system whole in an undigested state.

    As a result, this puts your dog at risk for major complications such as an intestinal blockage.

    Having pieces of rawhide in the digestive system could lead to undigested food being passed, and if the piece is large enough there is a possibility that it could break the intestinal wall.

    Internal bleeding caused by intestinal wall breakage could lead to sepsis, a very serious infection. The symptoms of sepsis include:

    Sepsis that is not treated promptly can lead to death. Therefore, if you think your dog is suffering from trying to pass a piece of rawhide, call your vet immediately.

    The longer you wait, the higher the risk of your dog needing a complicated and expensive procedure.

    Many Are Made Using Dubious Means

    Many rawhides, especially those from China, are made using toxic chemicals as we explained earlier.

    One time, jerky treats from said country were observed to have some links to Fanconi syndrome in pets — a fatal kidney condition. This would cause anyone to worry about the overall quality and safety standards over there.

    Another worrying statistic is that between 2008 and 2011, a space of 3 years, the FDA recalled rawhide chews from different companies 6 times for salmonella contamination.

    This time, the problem is not limited to your dog alone as you could also come down with salmonella infection.

    This becomes especially serious if the person affected is a child, an elderly person or someone with a weak immune system.


    Can a dog digest a rawhide bone?

    Generally speaking, rawhides are not easily digested, which is why large chunks broken off and swallowed pose such high obstruction risks. Any pieces your pup breaks off will have to pass through his digestive system in chunks, since they will not be broken down as well as the rest of his food.

    How do I know if my dog has a rawhide blockage?

    Rawhide has a tendency to swell, so large sections of rawhide can induce choking and cause an obstruction to the digestive system.

    Symptoms of Obstruction Due to Corn Cob, Rawhide, and Stuffed Toy in Dogs
    1. Abdominal bloating.
    2. Abdominal pain.
    3. Burping.
    4. Dark, tarry stools.
    5. Dehydration.
    6. Depression.
    7. Diarrhea.
    8. Excessive drooling.

    How long does it take a puppy to digest rawhide?

    The piece of rawhide may be flexible enough and get broke down by the intestinal tract enough to pass (it can take 3-5 days).