Nothing seems more natural than a dog sat by a warm fire sinking their teeth into a big juicy bone, it's just nature, right? To help with the confusion and to spread some good advice, we've broken down the good and the bad as far as bones are concerned.
When it comes to which sort of bone can be an active danger to your dog, cooked bones tend to be more problematic. Cooked bones have more of a tendency to splinter and break off into small sharp fragments than raw bones do. These small fragments can get lodged in a dog's windpipe or cause internal lesions with their sharp edges. They can also be very difficult to digest leading to constipation and obstructions.
Raw bones are generally a better way to go. Raw bones do not tend to splinter as much but can still be a problem if they are small in the first place. Small, raw bones, especially from poultry like chickens or turkeys can be just as prone to splintering as cooked bones and therefore pose just as much a danger to your dogs.
Edible or Recreational bones
A further way to decide which bone to get for your dog is to decide between edible or recreational bones. Edible bones are bones which contain a lot of nutritional material such as bone marrow, these kind of bones can also include chicken wings and turkey necks. Edible bones tend to be easier to crush and don't normally last as long as recreational bones.
Recreational bones are the sort of bones you can get in packs from the shops. They're generally good for your dogs dental hygeine as they can scrape away any plague or tarter that may have built up on your dog's teeth. Recreational bones, however, do not provide the same level of nutrients that edible bones do.
With both of these types however, raw is generally better than cooked.
How big should the bone be?
The general rule for bone size is that the bone should be larger than the dog's mouth. The bone should not fit in the dog's mouth completely and should definitely not be able to be swallowed whole.
As with most things concerning our pets however, supervision is recommended, always keeping an eye on youjr pet when they've got a bone is a good idea or making them keep the bone in an area you can see them.