Is rawhide safe to give my dog, or not? I hear conflicting answers.
Alec, there are indeed conflicting answers out there which makes it confusing. Rawhide is okay to give dogs to chew on if you follow a few guidelines.
First, choose a rawhide that’s suitable for your dog’s age and size. Thick strips of rawhide can break puppy teeth. Large rawhide bones are a common cause of tooth fracture even in adult dogs. Stick to thinner strips of rawhide, just to protect your dog’s teeth.
Second, rawhide can be high in salt and have varying amounts of fat in them. This makes them unsuitable for dogs with medical issues such as kidney disease or pancreatitis. If your dog has any health concerns, check with your vet before giving them rawhide.
Last, don’t leave your dog unsupervised when they’re eating rawhide. When the strip gets quite small, or if they’re chewed into smaller pieces, they can be swallowed whole and can get stuck in the gastrointestinal tract. It’s a good idea to remove them when they get to a dangerous size.
| 04.15.16 @ 00:37
Dr Audrey, what would you recommend for a dog to chew on instead of rawhide? | 04.15.16 @ 21:30
Jamie, if you'd rather not use rawhide, the alternative would depend on what the purpose was. If you're looking for something to keep your dog occupied, then a food dispensing toy or a stuffed Kong are both good choices. There are a number of sturdy chew toys that would satisfy the need to chew on things, for example if a puppy is teething. If you're concerned about dental health then veterinary dentists recommend brushing teeth using a soft toothbrush with a small head. | 04.18.16 @ 03:44