In today’s market, pet owners have many different options when it comes to picking out a chew bone for their dog. One that can’t be beat is the age old classic marrow bone. Raw marrow bones have been given to dogs for years and are still a popular choice. An all natural chew, raw bones provide plenty of good benefits for your dog, but there’s a few downsides as well.
The Good –
– Better then rawhide. Typically, many chemicals are used in the process of stripping and bleaching the rawhide, and the finished rawhide product is not easily digested and can cause blockages in some cases.
– Convenient. Marrow bones can be easily picked up at your local grocery store. Fresh and used for soups and other human meals, this means if it’s safe for you it’s safe for your dog.
– Long lasting. Depending on the size of the bone and your dog, these bones can provide a lengthy chew time, longer yet when served frozen. After your dog has cleaned the bone of all the meat and marrow, you can fill these with peanut butter or other mixtures and serve again and again to keep your dog occupied.
– Cleans teeth. The chewing your dog does on these bones provides great dental benefits as it keeps plaque from building up on your dogs teeth and reduces the need to have their teeth cleaned.
– Nutritional. Given as a treat, rather then a meal, marrow bones provide some additional nutritional value to your dogs diet. Protein, minerals, fat, and calcium, are all benefits of these bones so not only is your dog getting a lengthy, enjoyable treat, but one that provides to their daily needs as well.
The Bad –
Messy. Raw is just that, raw meat, fat and blood. You don’t want to give these bones to your dog on a carpeted floor because they will stain and leave bacteria. Best when given on an easy to clean surface like a tile floor, in a crate, on a towel/blanket, or outside. And be sure to disinfect the area after you dog is done chewing on the bone. And don’t forget to clean up your dog! They hold on to these with their paws and the bacteria gets all over their fur and face. A thorough wiping or bath may be necessary after giving these bones as a treat.
Dangers. Like any hard chew, marrow bones carry the risk of breaking or fracturing your dogs teeth. Your dog could also chew off pieces of the bone and swallow them, causing internal problems. This risk increases drastically when marrow bones are cooked, as they harden and dry out during the process. It’s best to never give your dog cooked bones. Another danger warning is if the bone is cut too short, as it could get caught around your dogs jaw and require an emergency trip to the vet for removal. They carry an odor. Dogs loves these bones for their taste and smell, but if not eaten thoroughly in a short time, these bones smell, or rot rather. The raw meat and fat only takes a few hours to start decomposing if not consumed. If your dog doesn’t finish the bone, you can put it in a bag and refreeze it for later, just don’t leave it laying around the house. If you think spoiled milk smells bad, just wait until you smell one of these after a few days!