Kuckle, Marrow, Raw and Meaty, Oh my!

Discussion in 'Dog Food and Recipes' started by StevePax, Sep 24, 2008.

  1. StevePax

    StevePax A guy with a dog

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    What are the various kinds of bones I can safely give my (14 pound!) dog, and where do I get them? Where do you get yours?

    Do you get them packaged from WalMart or the pet store?

    Do you get them from the butcher counter at your local grocery store? If so, how do you ask for them?

    Do you give them your chicken bones after you are done eating the meat? Those are cooked - that's a no-no, right?

    What about raw chicken bones (like a drumstick bone)?

    Beef, pork, or chicken?

    Help me out - I'm 99.9% sure Leo would love anything I'd give him along these lines, but I want to make sure it's safe and all that.

    Keep in mind I'm not trying to feed him a raw diet, or anything. Just give him something to chew on that he'll like.
     
  2. Gempress

    Gempress Walks into Mordor

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    If you're looking for something to give him a good, safe chew session, I'd forget the bones. Give him a bully stick instead. My mom's maltese loves them, and they last quite a while for smaller dogs.

    If you'd really prefer natural bones, I'd go with those big smoked knuckle bones you get at the store. I've never had problems with those. As the dog gnaws, the knuckle breaks into little crumbles. When the knuckle part is gone, just throw the rest of the bone away.

    While a lot of people recommend marrow bones, I'm really leery of those. My golden retriever cracked a molar on one.
     
  3. StevePax

    StevePax A guy with a dog

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    So, you mean the smoked knuckle bones from the pet store, right? Usually found completely shrink-wrapped in the treat aisle?
     
  4. Gempress

    Gempress Walks into Mordor

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    Yup. The ones I get are pretty good-sized, about the size of a large grapefruit. I don't know if they come in a variety of sizes or not.
     
  5. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    I personally don't like the smoked . I've had them shatter . I know many give raw chicken bones , but I'm too afraid of splintered bones .
     
  6. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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    Always raw. It's safest. Or bully sticks like Gempress said.

    If you choose raw you can feed any 'soft' bone which includes ALL poultry bones and ribs, tails, and necks from cows, moose, etc. Rabbits are all soft bones as well.

    For gnawing/entertainment you can give knuckle bones which are often sold as soup bones. They gnaw off the softer knuckles and lick out the marrow. Then you take it away. Weight-bearing bones will crack their teeth and pieces may chip off. Once the knuckles are gone all you have left is the weight-bearing bone so make sure to take it away :)
     
  7. noludoru

    noludoru Bored Now.

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    Call me crazy, but can a 14lb dog actually get through a knuckle bone? The ones I have seen in stores are, at the bare minimum, the size of my fist.

    You could try some raw chicken necks/backs/thighs if you want to give him an edible but still recreational chewing experience. For a dog that size, those should take a little while to go through.
     
  8. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    I'm bad !!! I rarely throw them away . Been lucky though , have never had a broken tooth .
     
  9. ihartgonzo

    ihartgonzo and Fozzie B!

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    PLEASE don't give your dog smoked anything... or sterilized anything, for that matter... my dogs have eaten thousands of raw meaty bones, and probably hundreds of raw knuckle bones, completely safely. The ONE smoked knuckle bone Gonzo got 5 years ago was the only thing that cracked his molar, really badly. It was a sliver away from needing to be extracted, which is very costly, and I know many people whose dogs cracked teeth on smoked/cooked/sterilized bones. The danger in cooked bones of any kind is that fact that the moisture is entirely drained from them, they are brittle and super hard. When you press your nail into a raw bone, it will leave a dent. When you do that to a cooked bone, it will not. When a dog chews on a cooked bone, it will splinter, and/or the harder bones could damage teeth easily.

    The only raw bones you need to be careful with are weight-bearing bones, for the most part, which are leg bones. Chicken leg bones are fairly small and soft, but anything pretty much turkey-sized and up tend to have very thick leg bones. The one weight-bearing beef bone I do feed is knuckle bones, the "knee", because instead of the thick femur bone with a thin layer of meat, the knuckle has a very small bone in the center which is covered in meat and cartilege. Knuckle bones should be thrown out once the dog reaches the boney center, but it takes a good hour or two to get through the meat and cartilege, which is what really cleans the teeth amazingly well. They have to rip and pull at the cartilege, which does the best job at cleaning the crevices of a canine's teeth. And dogs reallyyy enjoy them, and get a work-out from all of that chewing/handling!

    I would feed knuckle bones, for recreation, to a 14 lb dog. You can find them at most butchers and many grocery stores, but you'll probably have to ask for them. You can even get them cut in half to be more manageable for your dog. To start with, it would be best to keep the chewing sessions to a minimum... give him 10-15 minutes, rinse it off and put it back into the freezer, then give him another 10-15 minutes another day. One knuckle bone should last him several sessions, and if you freeze it in between you don't need to worry about bacteria.

    Other beneficial raw meaty bones are chicken, turkey, pork and lamb necks and chicken/turkey wings.
     
  10. lovelymonster

    lovelymonster New Member

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  11. irenafarm

    irenafarm Herd. Protect. Love.

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    I'm surprised he's not interested in the raw lamb bone - mine love those. They are "consumables" here meaning they eat it bone and all.

    Recreational bones are the ones they don't eat most of the bone. For the most part, this is almost anything from a cow (well, steer), and bison or other large game meats.

    My favorite small dog bone is incredibly cheap compared to those store bought things. And safe too. Get one of those packages of ribs at Walmart - the big slab that runs about $2 a pound now, I think. It will be about seven or eight pounds. Don't worry about that.

    When you get home, get out your cutting board and a big sharp knife (sharpen it if you haven't recently, you'll thank me soon). Now, what I do is find the space between the first rib bone and the next, you'll find a soft spot right through the package. Don't open teh package yet! Just get your knife and cut right down through the plastic, turning the blade carefully to follow the curve of the bone.

    Do the next and next in the same way until you have separated the package into about eight pieces. You'll actually have two rib bones per slice.

    These ribs will range from eight inches long to only three inches, and will minimally replace one meal, if not two! But that's all right as long as you aren't doing it every day. Your dog will not eat the entire bone but it is soft enough to squish rather than crack under determined teeth.

    Pork neck bones are easy to find this time of year and are inexpensive. Most dogs can eat the entire bone.

    Raw bones are superior not just for the safety factor, but also for teeth cleaning value. Dogs need the squishy stuff as much as the grindy stuff to get their teeth well cleaned.
     
  12. tastyveggies

    tastyveggies New Member

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    my grocery only ever has marrow bones, that is what I give my dogs. are these ok? I can ever find these other bones everyone talks about.
     
  13. Tankstar

    Tankstar ~Lisa~

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    I just use marrow bones too (sold here as "soup bomes" I buy 3 in a package for 2 somthing
    9depending ont he weight). works great for teeth cleaning (blaze is 5.5 years old and only has very slight build up on his teeth and they are white as ever) I probably give him about 2 a week. does wonders for teeth plus keeps them nice and busy for hours.
     
  14. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    I personally stay away from rib bones . I don't like bones that can be cracked and swallowed . I've seen the neck bones and have almost bought . Then I think of " What if " , I'll stick to shank bones . For small dogs , I'd think that a round bone would be OK.....depending on thickness .
     
  15. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    My 7 pound dog loves knuckle bones. Yes, they're about twice as big as her head, and she does have to knaw on it a while before she can actually physically pick it up, but since it has so many grooves and stuff, she can definately get her mouth around it.
     
  16. ACooper

    ACooper Moderator

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    I had the same problem. We shop at Kroger for our meats normally and the only bones they ever have are "soup" bones which are marrow bones.

    I had to seek out a butcher. This tiny little grocery place on my way to work actually still has a meat counter that cuts their OWN meats. They always have knuckle bones in the freezer :)

    I would recommend you go to a small place (not a chain) and check out the meat counter............ask the person behind the counter if they have knuckle bones, if they don't, ask them where you might find them.
     

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