What kind of problems can arise if we feed a dog with bones?

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

The main problems that can arise when dogs are given bones to chew on have to do with choking and with having the bones get stuck in the digestive tract.

If dogs chew bones that can easily splinter into large and jagged pieces, they can be harmed.  The splinters can get stuck in the dog's mouth or in its throat.  The splinters can also get stuck in the stomach or intestines.  There is also the possibility of a dog's intestines getting perforated by a sharp splinter of bone.

However, giving bones to a dog has health benefits so it can be good to give a dog the right sort of bone.

giorgiana1976's profile pic

giorgiana1976 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted on

Unfortunately, if we decide to give to a dog a bone or if it finds one in the trash, it may get more than a tasty snack. Bones do not decompose easily. This means that the dog has to remove them through the faeces, mostly leading to slow transit and constipation, which it will require a visit to the veterinarian. Bones may also cause airway obstruction(suffocation) or gastrointestinal tract obstruction, also bones may cause intestinal bleeding, if the bone fragments rips or tear the intestinal wall.

Thin bones, such as ribs or fish bones, can remain stationed in the throat, where they can cause serious damages to surrounding tissues and even dog suffocation.

Even large beef bones (humerus, femur, etc.) may cause problems more or less serious. Depending on the force of dog's bite, even these bones can be crushed and swallowed without being chewed.

Chicken and turkey bones are especially dangerous. They are more fragile and they can easily be broken. Bone chips or fragments can cause perforation of the mouth, esophagus, small intestine and colon, causing very serious internal injuries, which often leads to death of the animal.

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