No Bones About It- Stop Feeding Your Pet Bones!
With the Easter holiday quickly approaching, it can be very tempting to feed left over ham bones to your four-legged family member as a special treat. I am here to tell you, STOP!
A common misconception is that bones are safe for pets to chew on. However, the consequence of that may lead to an unexpected, even life-threatening trip to the animal hospital. When consumed bones are capable of causing gastrointestinal blockages, choking, broken teeth, vomiting, and diarrhea. They can even cause death!
Apart from the butcher-type bones many people purchase, there are a variety of commercially available bone treats that are unfortunately marketed for our canine pets, including deer antlers.
There are also raw dog diets that include, or call for, chunks of animal bone. The problem lies in that many of these bones are too large. So when they are consumed whole, or even in smaller pieces, they can traumatize any surface they touch on the way through the gastrointestinal tract starting with the mouth. Broken teeth, irritated bowel and worst case scenario bowel perforation or obstruction, can be the end result.
Dogs can also pick up bones while unsupervised outside during play time or while on walks. The trashcan is another common source of bone ingestion as well.
There are numerous other treats available that are much safer for your pet to consume, and just as satisfying to their taste buds. If you have any questions or concerns about what items you’re feeding, please contact Andrews Veterinary Hospital, your Greater Murphy NC area veterinarian at 828-321-3316 to determine if they are safe. And remember, keep whatever ham bones you may have left over from the holiday (or any other ham, rib, or chicken wing eating occasion throughout the year) out of reach of your pet’s mouth!