If you’re a dog owner, you might already know that dogs love to chew bones. They love it so much that they spend hours chewing it. If you want to keep your dog busy, just give them a bone and they’ll be on their own for quite some time.
At this point you must be wondering why do dogs like bones? Dogs love chewing bones because it cleans the plague from their teeth, provides mental stimulation, and it’s a nice jaw exercise.
Dogs have a biological reflex to chew that’s why you always see them chewing bones, shoes, or other household items. Read on to find out more details.
Reasons Why Dogs Like Bones
Let’s explore some of the reasons why your dog love to chew bones-
Bone marrow for dogs is like a snicker bar for humans. It is full of nutritious substances and is very delicious. Dog’s ancestors used to survive on marrow because it is a healthy source of fat and calorie content.
Bone marrow isn’t the only thing that is nutrient, the bone structure itself contains fat which holds minerals like calcium and phosphorus.
Bits of Meat
Raw bones have bits of meat pieces attached or glued to them and dogs love the challenge of chewing bones for the reward that they get from those bits of fresh meat. The meat on the bone is not only tasty but it is also very rich in protein.
Just like exercise stimulates humans to release endorphins, chewing stimulates dogs to release endorphins. Endorphins are the hormones that are associated with happiness.
Chewing bones help dogs reduce stress and keep depression away. If they don’t have a bone to chew on, they will find something else to chew. So, in short, chewing bone is in the nature of the dog as it keeps them away from boredom.
One of the main reasons why dogs love to chew on bones as it keeps them busy. Since they don’t have a 9-5 job like us, chewing bone keeps them occupied. Chewing bones is very stimulating for dogs.
Besides the endorphin release, chewing bones also develop problem-solving skills in dogs. It motivates dogs to try harder to get a delicious reward at the end.
Promotes Dental Heath
Chewing bones reduce tartar and plaque build-up in dogs. When a dog chews on bones, it scrapes against the dog’s teeth to remove the food residue. If you notice some buildup on your dog’s teeth or discoloration, just give them a piece of bone to resolve the problem. Chewing raw bones helps in saliva production that keeps the dog’s teeth and gum clean.
Chewing bones also help dogs clear their digestive tract and keep their bowel movement regular. Bones add roughage to your dog’s diet. Chewing dogs also helps them express their anal glands.
Should I Give Bones to my Dog?
You might be wondering is it safe to give bones to your dog. The quick answer is ‘Yes’ but the certain precautions you need to keep in mind before giving a bone to your dog.
Bone safety-related tips for dogs-
- Never give small pieces of bones to your dog as they pose a choking risk.
- Choose raw bones over cooked bones as they are best for chewing and ingesting purposes.
- Do not give pork or rib bones
- Avoid giving bones that are too hard to chew as can break down your dog’s teeth.
- Smaller chunks of bones can create a blockage so take away the bones when they are too small.
- Discard the used after a few days as they pose bacterial infection.
What Bones Should I Give to my Dog?
When you decide to give bones to your dog for chewing purposes, stay away from pork bones. Give them raw bones. You can find them at your local grocery store or pet shop. Here are some bones that are recommended for dogs-
- Beef knuckles
- Chicken necks
- Turkey necks
- Lamb’s necks
- Elk’s necks
- Meaty beef femurs
- Lamb’s ears
- Marrow bones
- Pork ears
- Duck feet
What Are Some Alternatives for Bones?
If you don’t want to give bones to your dog then there are some other chew alternatives that you can give to your dog.
Here are some other safer bone alternatives:
Bully sticks are one of the most natural alternatives to bones for dogs to chew. They are not only healthy but also taste delicious. It helps in taking out the bacteria that is present in the gumline and teeth of your dog.
Another alternative to bones for dogs is tendons. They are full digestive and also do the work of floss. They are perfect for all types of dogs. The common types of tendons available in the market are bison, beef, and lamb.
These long blocks of cheese are the perfect alternative to bones for dogs. They are full of protein and calcium. If you want to keep your dog occupied for several hours toss them yak chews.
Frozen carrots are safe and natural alternative for bones. Refrigerate them for a few hours before giving them to your dog. They are long-lasting and also low in calories.
You can find some chew toys from your nearby pet shop. They will last for years and keep your dog satisfied and entertained for long. They also offer an extra level of mental stimulation for young dogs.
Conclusion: Why do Dogs Like Bones?
As you can see, there are a variety of reasons why your dog loves to chew bones. Chewing is a healthy activity for dogs as it stimulates their brain and also keeps their teeth clean. However, we suggest watching your dog carefully when they chew bones.
If you don’t want to risk with bones, you can buy the other alternatives to keep your dog entertained. Also, if your dog is getting too aggressive the reason could be that they are chewing too much. Consider limiting their chewing time.