I recently read a question in one of the threads I surf asking about dog chews that were healthy and wouldn’t make a dog fat. As dog chews and dog treats are different, I’m going to answer the question in a broad way. Rawhide bones are a great choice to use for getting your dog’s chewy needs addressed without adding a ton of calories.
Rawhide Bones – A Natural Option
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Many dog chews and dog treats are just garbage. I mean, they’re terrible. Most dog treats are filled with preservatives, sugars, and other junk that is unhealthy and will make your dog fat. A lot of dog chews are colored with dyes, which also aren’t great for your pooch. That’s why I love rawhide bones.
Of course, rawhide bones are just molded cow hide, so there are some calories. However, the caloric content in a rawhide bone is negligible when you compare it with those flavored dog treats. In addition to that, if you get an all-natural variety, you won’t have the worry of preservatives or artificial colors.
When I worked at the vet, we kept a stash of rawhide bones on hand at all times so our boarders would have something to occupy themselves with when we couldn’t play with them. Generally speaking, a rawhide bone is a great option for a chewy because they are so benign, they last a long time, and dogs just love them overall.
Rawhide Bones – A Few Things to Consider
Although I’m a huge proponent of rawhide bones for chew treats, there are a few things to think about if you’re considering getting them for your dog.
Because rawhide bones are just beef hide, they are not hypoallergenic. You cannot give them to a dog with a beef allergy or sensitivity. Even if your dog never swallows any of the bone, that beef hide breaks down somewhat as your dog chews, and the offending proteins will make it into your dog’s system.
Manufacturer and Type
When choosing rawhide bones, be absolutely certain that they are all-natural and that they DO NOT come from China. It’s just not worth it to save a little money. There have been way too many instances of contaminated dog products from China to risk it. Also, all-natural rawhide bones are baked and cured, so there are no preservatives.
When choosing rawhide bones, remember to get a size appropriate for your pooch. You don’t want your Yorkie attempting to chew on a rawhide bigger than it is. By the same token, don’t give your Mastiff a small rawhide chew. He’ll just swallow it whole.
This goes hand in hand with choosing appropriately sized rawhide bones. You have to keep a little bit of an eye out when you give your dogs rawhide bones. They’re not meant to be eaten. They are meant only for chewing. Once your dog has chewed its rawhide down to a manageable size, it WILL attempt to swallow it. Just make sure you take it away from your pooch before it does.
The reason for that is that you don’t want your dog swallowing a big piece of something that breaks down slowly. In all of the eight years that I worked at a vet, I never saw or heard of a dog getting obstructed by a rawhide, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Rawhide Bones – Naturally Nomtastic
If you want your dog to be able to get its chew fix in without adding a ton of calories, consider rawhide bones. All-natural rawhide bones have very few calories, no preservatives, and no artificial colors. Just remember to pick an appropriate size and keep somewhat of an eye on your pooch while it enjoys its chewy experience. =D
Do you give your dog rawhide bones? What is your favorite safe, natural brand?