We all know how much dogs love bones, or at least how much they’re portrayed to love them in our favorite movies and shows. Are bones actually healthy for your dog though? As a dog owner, it’s normal to be concerned about what your dog can and cannot eat, and it’s even more crucial to understand these restrictions for puppies.
Puppies are maturing and have sensitive requirements about food and toys. We’re here to talk about whether puppies are allowed to have marrow bone or if it’s recommended against.
What is Marrow Bone?
Marrow bones are hard bones that are obtained from larger animals such as cows. They are often raw and contain bone marrow on the inside, which is a spongy tissue from which blood cells are derived. These bones are often sold raw or cooked, but dog owners need to be aware that giving their dog cooked bones can be a serious hazard, as we’ll mention later in the article. The real question is if you can give it to your dog.
When Can You Give Your Puppy Marrow Bone?
Though it’s tempting to give your puppy a marrow bone as a treat, it’s actually warned against if your dog has never had raw meat before. Some research suggests waiting until puppies are at least 10 months old, but most dog owners have had bad experiences with giving their puppy marrow bones because they can cause upset stomachs, which isn’t fun for you or your puppy.
There are many alternatives to bone marrow, such as toys that are approved for the age of your puppy and that are big enough not to be accidentally swallowed.
Marrow bones can be given to dogs, but you’ll need to build up your puppy to it. Take baby steps by beginning with softer and smaller bones for shorter periods of time. Eventually, your puppy will lead up to chewing on a full-size marrow bone, and they’ll probably love you for putting the time into training them for this treat.
To understand why marrow bones are beneficial for dogs while learning about the drawbacks, we’ll lead you through the pros and cons so that you can make the best decision for your dog, as well as what to look for.
Benefits of Marrow Bones
There are many great effects marrow bones have on your dog. It’s not just a fun toy, it’s also a great source of nutrients and minerals, as well as an easy way to provide your dog exercise. You’ll find that the benefits may outweigh the drawbacks, so consider building up your dog to be able to have marrow bones.
Major Source of Calcium
Puppies are growing quickly, so they need lots of nutrients to strengthen their body and keep them healthy. Even adult dogs could benefit from the rich source of nutrients that marrow bones provide. These bones are full of calcium, which builds and maintains strong bones.
The heart, muscles, and nerves also need calcium for proper functioning. You can also find minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, and vitamins all packed within a marrow bone.
Prevents Tooth Decay
According to research, marrow bones can help prevent plaque accumulation and decay on the teeth. Contrary to what you may assume, marrow bones can also give your dog better breath. The reduction of dental calculus could save you money on dental care in the long run while keeping your dog healthy.
Improves Mental & Physical Health
Bone marrow is a fun activity for your dogs to stay active and stimulated. They encourage your dog to work hard to chew the bone, and often your dog may play with it and toss it around for extra fun!
The dog owners out there know what it’s like on the days when your dog hasn’t been on a walk. Usually, it turns into a trash picking-up session and telling your dog to quit getting into things. With a marrow bone, your dog is happy, distracted, and entertained for long periods of time. Take the opportunity to relax!
Drawbacks of Marrow Bones
Disadvantages are always difficult to talk about, but it’s necessary to review them for the health and safety of your furry friend. When considering whether or not to
Risk of Fractured Teeth
Due to the hard texture of the bone, dogs can fracture their teeth on these bones while chewing on them. This can be an issue, especially with puppies whose teeth are still developing and not fully matured.
Fractured teeth may cause your dog pain, and it will warrant a trip to the vet and probably a large vet bill. Keep an eye on your dog while they chew on their marrow bone.
Dangers of Splinters
If you give your dog a marrow bone, be sure to take it away once it begins to dry. As marrow bones dry, they become more likely to break or splinter. The small, sharp pieces can easily get into your dog’s intestinal tract and cause damage to internal organs.
For this reason, never give your dogs cooked marrow bones. Worst-case scenarios require surgery and may lead to death.
Some dogs may experience some intestinal upset due to the rich fat of the bone marrow. It’s also high in calories. This is another reason to slowly build your dog up to marrow bones. Some dogs may never get adjusted to the marrow though, and if this is the case, it’s best to keep it away. Give them a new toy instead!
Bone Marrow Alternatives
After considering the pros and cons of letting your dog eat marrow bones, you may decide that it’s best not to risk it. We have some amazing alternatives for you to give your dog if this is the case! Pet stores and online sellers offer a variety of toys and treats that can give your puppy the same benefits a marrow bone can, without the drawbacks.
Rubber Kongs, nylon bones, and squeaky stuffed animals are fun and inexpensive toys that your puppy will enjoy playing with. Bully sticks, dental chews, and rawhides are great treats that each provide benefits. If you’re looking for something similar to a marrow bone, antlers and treated pig’s ears are more natural options that your dog shouldn’t have any problems with. We recommend these products due to their higher safety aspect.
Hopefully, this article was beneficial in helping you make your decision on marrow bones. While they do provide benefits, there are still drawbacks. The alternative options are where many dog owners end up after doing their research on marrow bones. Your dog will thank you for taking care of them, and it really doesn’t matter whether you give them a marrow bone or a new toy or treat. It’s all just as great to them!