I was reading the rawhide thread and wanted to know if you worry about giving your dogs uncooked bones from the butcher. I give my dog rawhide flips, but would like to know what other options there might be.
What exactly is your concern?
I've buy the beef marrow bones at the grocery store and I haven't worried. They are thick, and I buy the 4 - 6" ones so I don't worry about her swallowing them. Unccoked bones won't splinter, but cooked ones will, so avoid those.
When I do buy RAW Marrow bones from the butcher, I ask the butcher to cut the bones around 2 1/2 or 3 inches.. Those are perfect size for my Dakota, because she's able to get all of the marrow out.. If I get a bigger size bone, she'll break the bone to get to the marrow she can't reach, which increases the chance of her swallowing a piece of bone.. But once she gets all the marrow and meat off the bone, she looses interest in it..
I was concerned about choking but it sounds like as long as you get the right size that all should be well. Thanks for the advice.
Raw bones are wonderful for your dog. Dogs are designed to eat raw meat. It is COOKED bones you have to worry about --they can splinter. I have never had any issues with raw bones and I don't know anyone that has, either. I feed as much raw as possible...again, eating raw meat is natural for them.
I just have a problem with the uncooked meat, yes its natural for the dog, but the risk of food-borne illness is way too high, especially in today's "meat market", e-coli, BSE, etc...
I put a thick bone on the stove, boil for maybe 10-12 minutes, or on a real hot grill for only 5-10 minutes, and have never had a problem with splintering, even with my "aggressive chewers"!
Just my opinion, but seems to work for us!
Dogs process raw meat differently then we do...we are talking about animals that will consume a dead rotting carcass and have no side effects. Their digestive tract is designed to eat raw meat and not cooked processed kibble. The risk of getting a food borne illness is much greater for us just serving it than it is for them eating it.*I just have a problem with the uncooked meat, yes its natural for the dog, but the risk of food-borne illness is way too high, especially in today's "meat market", e-coli, BSE, etc...
Yes, true....but I'll continue to cook bones....my labs generally don't snack on dead, rotting corpses, so I'll continue to cook the bones!!
Mine do.*;D not that I encourage it or anything!my labs generally don't snack on dead, rotting corpses,
In all seriousness, if cooking them is working for you, good. I can imagine your cooking process is better then what most cooked pet store bones go through to get that ugly yellow colouring.
I'd rather see someone not give bones at all if you're going to cook them. Cooking them makes the bones brittle. Just like cooking denatures the proteins of muscle meat we eat, it also affects bones. These splinters can dislodge and become impailed in the esophagus, stomach, or intestines causing severe and potentially fatal injuries.
Canines evolved to eat raw meat. I don't think they're obligate carnivores, but they have evolved to eat raw meat. Their stomachs have a lower pH than ours, and their digestive tracts are much shorter. Both of these facts help protect them from the same food-borne illnesses we omnivores are susceptible to. I regularly feed raw chicken backs to Jes as treats, and there are a lot of raw feeders out there that feed raw meats with no problems. Obviously they can contract food-borne illnesses but a little common sense with food preparations helps reduce it dramatically (don't leave raw meat out, keep it in the refridgerator when before feeding, etc.).
And for the record, cooking does absolutely nothing to BSE, at least not at temperatures that we cook at (cooking at those temps would incinerate the bone rendering it pointless to do so). Luckily, it's not common here, and it's in the brain and spinal column. I'm not sure it's been found in the femur of cows.