Raw bones for small dogs?

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Raw bones for small dogs?

This is a discussion on Raw bones for small dogs? within the Dog Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; I am wondering what to give (bone wise) to a small dog - size - like Jack Russell Terrier - she's a JRT mix and ...

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Old 03-28-2016, 11:44 AM
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Raw bones for small dogs?

I am wondering what to give (bone wise) to a small dog - size - like Jack Russell Terrier - she's a JRT mix and 9 years old.

I think she's been given rawhide before (not by me - I did give a rawhide chew but took it away - won't do that again) but they were large bones that she shared with two larger females - and I think they were tough enough that she didn't break up but I'm not certain.

Anyway, I don't want to give rawhide and was wondering if raw bones was a good idea. I am thinking chicken necks/wings - or is something else better or also good? I believe the best option is to go to a butcher. I am not sure if there is anyone local that has saved certain ones for dogs, though. Is there anything I should ask or mention to a/the butcher? I guess most will have the meat on already?

Can anyone give me any ideas or suggestions? I also read that you have to supervise with the small raw bones but other say that the toughness of the dog's stomache can handle raw bones so that even if it breaks it up, that it will pass through the intenstines okay. I want to wait until it is clear what the truth/accuracy is.

What bones are good for dogs?
Do you agree with this link?

Other than raw bones, some say a Kong is okay. Also, that an edible dental bone is okay.

Bones Can Kill Your Dog So Find Out Which Ones Are Safe

"I highly recommend a high quality dog dental bone, that is 100 percent natural and contain absolutely no corn, soy, gluten, extra fat or sugar, or animal byproducts."

Is there really such a thing in pet stores these days? Most are big corp. brand names and I think they will have chemicals/fillers?

Anyway, I hope to get some ideas here. I mostly buy freeze dried liver treats for treats (I had my own dog only four weeks ago). but if there's a suggestion there added as well, that would be great. I'm mostly looking at what kind of bone as the dog often wants to chew things and so far, she is after a tennis ball and I don't like it because she eventually tears off the fuzz. I know she'll like a bone but I want to give her something safe.

Last edited by BenP; 03-28-2016 at 11:46 AM.
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Old 03-28-2016, 02:03 PM
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Most raw bones are safe, the exception are weight bearing bones of large animals, like cattle. I wouldn't start with chicken necks until you know how your dog eats bones, some dogs are gulpers and will try to swallow them down whole. For longer lasting bones anything pork is good. I didn't read those links yet, I have to go feed my dogs then will look them over.
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Old 03-28-2016, 02:56 PM
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Those two links aren't bad, but some of it is questionable. Weight bearing bones of large animals can crack teeth of some dogs. It really depends on if the dog is a hard chewer or not, but it's usually best to just skip these. So leg, shank, knuckle bones of cows and buffalo. Bones from chicken, turkey, lamb, goat, pork, rabbit are edible. Chicken is always a good place to start, wings, backs and legs. They won't last long though. Pork feet and the bone in pork butts or picnics are good. Beef ribs can't really be eaten, but nibbled on. Pork ribs are softer and edible.

I always supervise my dogs when they are chewing, better safe than sorry. I only once had to pull a bone and piece of meat from one of my dogs throats. But it was my fault, it was a cut pork bone on 'country style ribs'. I'm more careful of what they get now.

Dogs stomach acids will handle bones no problems. But sometimes in the beginning a small piece will pass through or be vomited up. As they get use to eating real bones this will go away.

I buy most of my bones, and meat from the grocery store. I always look for sales. Today I picked up a bunch of turkey that was half off, and I'm waiting for an order from my pet carnivore to come in the mail. The freezer is also full of pork and chicken. Very few pet stores have raw bones. Make sure to stay away from the smoked bones, those are the type that can splinter.

I do use kongs, mostly for Freyja when she gets a meat meal. I cut it up and stuff it in a kong. Otherwise they don't really care about them. I don't feed those dental chews, I don't trust them plus with the raw diet they don't need them. Also too much bone can cause constipation. If their poop is dry and chalky they are getting too much bone.
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Old 03-28-2016, 03:49 PM
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I have a small dog and he gets chicken wings, chicken legs, chicken carcasses, bit of a duck neck, duck wings, duck carcass, turkey wings, bit of turkey neck among other things. They are all human grade foods, I get them from supermarkets, butchers or my local, most wonderful boarding kennels who have a most wonderful petshop with a vast array of raw dog and cat food.

There are also many online raw suppliers who offer complete diets or single or mixed ingredient meats or meat/bone minces or chunks.

My dogs always took to raw immediately with no problems. One, at 9 weeks, swallowed a chicken wing whole, and he was fine, considering the wing was longer than him.

But, having said that, exercising caution should be common sense. Good luck, hope your dog enjoys raw.
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Old 03-28-2016, 04:35 PM
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We fed raw for a year, and pretty much any bone is good for a small dog. We give him weight bearing bones - that I wouldn't feed to a larger dog. Once their teeth sharpen and jaws get stronger, it amazes me how 10 pound dog can destroy a bone.

Chicken wings, drums etc are great. Rabbit bones if you can find them. We'll buy a rack of pork ribs, cut them and leave the meat on then feed frozen. Keeps him busy for a while, he eats the bone and his teeth are incredible.

Even frozen meat is a good chew treat.

Just make sure your dog is a good chewer and not a gulper.
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Old 03-28-2016, 07:54 PM
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So bones from the supermarket/grocery store are okay then? I had the impression they weren't for some reason.

What about chicken quarters/breasts?

Sounds like chicken wings/legs won't last long. What about recreational chewing? Maybe the pork (butt or feet?) can be used for this? If not, any suggestions?

I also had the impression that the pork had to be frozen for a period of time first? Not necessary? Thanks for all the replies.
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Old 03-28-2016, 08:21 PM
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Any chicken is fine, I feed quarters often. Breast is good too, but not much bone and the bone it has is soft. like Jagger said, freezing meat will make it last longer. Vegas will only eat frozen, he doesn't like the squish. Grocery store meat is fine and no need to freeze pork before feeding. The reason that people say that is because trichinosis use to be a problem with pork. It is a parasite that lives in the muscle. But there have been no cases of trichinosis in commercially raised pork for a very long time. It is not considered an issue anymore. It could be a problem if you were feeding wild pig, bear or raccoon though.
Pork feet or neck bones if you can find larger pieces are good for recreational chewing. Beef ribs too, but I'd do at least two ribs together.
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Old 03-28-2016, 10:32 PM
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All the above is good


We buy everything from the local supermarkets, watch for sales and pretty much anything is fair game. If I wouldn't eat it, he doesn't get it in his food dish.
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Old 03-30-2016, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by annageckos View Post
Any chicken is fine, I feed quarters often. Breast is good too, but not much bone and the bone it has is soft. like Jagger said, freezing meat will make it last longer. Vegas will only eat frozen, he doesn't like the squish. Grocery store meat is fine and no need to freeze pork before feeding. The reason that people say that is because trichinosis use to be a problem with pork. It is a parasite that lives in the muscle. But there have been no cases of trichinosis in commercially raised pork for a very long time. It is not considered an issue anymore. It could be a problem if you were feeding wild pig, bear or raccoon though.
Pork feet or neck bones if you can find larger pieces are good for recreational chewing. Beef ribs too, but I'd do at least two ribs together.
A local butcher offered a pig femur. Is that okay for a small dog?

Also, they have pig's ears at the front. Seems better than the ones you get at Pet Smart and other pet stores.

Any thoughts?

What kind of meat do you put in the Kong toy (rubber toy?)? I'm just curious.

I'm going to try to line up a few butchers in the area in case they don't have much - I mentioned chicken but it was near closing time so maybe they didn't look very hard. I'm going in tomorrow.

So, you freeze the meat and then offer? What kind? Thanks for all your answers!
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Old 03-30-2016, 07:04 PM
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I'd think a JRT mix could probably handle a pig femur. IMO you can't really go too big, just means more chewing time. Pigs ears are fine, they are very chewy and can take some time to finish. I've also dehydrated my own pigs ears, I've read of people doing this in the oven too. I use my dehydrator to do this though. I agree, fresh raw pigs ears are much better then the ones from pet stores. You don't know how long they have been sitting around or what may have been added to them.

For kongs I use any meat. Ground meat works well, I also cut whole pieces of pork or beef up into chunks and stuff them in. Chicken hearts work too. Depending on the dog you can then freeze or lightly freeze it. Freyja gets bored fast and will bring me the kong if it is frozen solid to help her. So I either lightly freeze it for about a half an hour or just stuff it and give it to her. I also sometimes top it off with some coconut oil and let it set in the fridge.

I feed Vegas frozen meat, he likes it that way. He will not eat organs or poultry thawed at all. I'll also feed frozen or semi frozen when it's hot out. I just take it out of the bag and hand it to the dog. If I'm feeding ground meat it is also frozen just to make it last longer. Types of meat, any. Chicken, turkey, pork, beef, veal, goat, lamb, fish(mackerel, salmon, sardines, bluefish) duck, rabbit, quail, deer plus organs from any of the above.
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