Owning a dog is fulfilling and fun, but it also involves a great deal of responsibility. Your biggest concern is your pet’s well-roundedness, and part of it is making sure every food they eat is safe.
Aside from monitoring their food, you should also check what they chew. Dogs like gnawing on bones as much as they love eating food. But were you aware that you cannot just give any type of bone to your dog? This is the same as the fact that you cannot just give him any type of human food.
Can dogs eat lamb bones?
Lamb bones should be given to dogs with extra care. In this post, we will discuss the safety of feeding lamb bones to your dog. You might have stumbled on this post because it is either your first time to give this as a treat or your pup accidentally ingested one.
First off, are lamb bones OK for dogs? Yes, they are! But if they are, what are their benefits for dogs? Can dogs eat cooked lamb bones? How frequent should you give your dog this kind of treat?
To answer all the questions you might have, we compiled all the things you should do and should not do when giving your pup a lamb bone. Before we get to that part, you may first want to check out these interesting facts about lamb bones:
- The cartilages in lamb bones are good for the dog’s teeth and gums and contain high amounts of calcium and phosphorous which are essential nutrients, especially for growing pups.
- Chewing lamb bones is beneficial for the dog’s jaw, providing him with a jaw-workout. Yes, like humans, they do need some sort of physical activities too.
- The lamb neck bone is meaty and is usually a safe option for small dogs. Non-aggressive chewers can be given succulent bones. A perfect example is the lamb shank bone that has a bit of meat left. Nowadays, there are online stores selling lamb bones.
- An organic lamb is healthier and tastier compared to its non-organic counterpart.
1.Give your dog raw bones.
In this case, raw is best. As long as the bone was not cooked, you should not worry about giving it to your pet. There was a notion that dogs should not gnaw on bones at all. This has been a reason for debates among pet owners and vets for a long time.
Some vets do not recommend giving bones to dogs, in fear that it would cause internal perforation when ingested. If you worry about your dog suffering from intestinal obstruction, it is fine to not give him a bone at all. There is nothing wrong in following your veterinarian’s recommendations because he or she only wants what is best for your dog.
On the other side, if you are confident that your pet can handle it, then go. Some dogs enjoy chewing bones and it is not something to be concerned about. As long as the dog is chewing fresh bones of an appropriate size and he enjoys it, do not stress yourself too much.
Contrary to the myth, dogs can devour on bones. In fact, dog experts recommend doing so. This is for recreational purposes and dental health. Just take extra caution when giving it to your pet.
2. Set a limit in giving him raw lamb bones.
An ideal number of giving lamb bones to dogs is maximum twice a week. You can also give him only once a week if you like. Remember that you don’t need to give your pet a bone as frequent as possible. After all, what matters most is the food he eats and the nutrients he gets from it.
3. Check where that lamb came from.
Where did you buy that lamb? If lamb is a staple in your place, you might already have an idea about choosing fresh lamb. It should not have an unpleasant smell and should not have discoloration.
Always check if the lamb is still fresh. Otherwise, there is a big chance it will cause food poisoning to your pet. Food poisoning is a serious issue, especially for pets with immune system problems. It can even kill your pet when untreated.
4. Be specific about the bone part you are giving.
The RSPCA Pet Insurance claims that the ribs, flaps, and tail bones of a raw lamb are the best parts for the dog’s teeth. However, ensure that whatever bone you are giving is big enough so it does not get ingested.
In case that the raw lamb bone is already ingested and the dog started choking, bring him to a vet hospital. When not removed, the bone can break and splinter the inside the body. Rush him to an emergency vet to check his condition.
5. Assess your dog when giving him a lamb bone.
Is there a specific health concern you are worried about and because of which you don’t want to give your dog a lamb bone? If your dog has a teeth problem, you should think twice. This is important especially the first time you are giving a raw lamb bone to your pet.
There are types of dogs that cannot take in raw meaty bones. Many dogs would enjoy chewing a lamb bone because it is very tasty. However, some dogs may not find it interesting. After all, dogs are different. As the owner, you should also know your dog’s chewing type and his capability.
Now that you know the things to do when giving your pet lamb bones, we will go through the more important part: the “don’ts.” Take note of these things to make sure your dog is safe when chewing lamb bone:
1. Don’t give your dog a cooked lamb bone, but take note that there is an exception to this.
Again, lamb bone is safe for dogs as long as it did not go under the fire. Cooked lamb bones are usually brittle. These are types that can easily break and could damage the dog’s body when ingested.
What should you do if the dog already ate a cooked lamb bone? The best thing to do, if you noticed any warning signs, is rush him to an animal doctor.
In general, cooked bones are already soft and have already lost their structure. They can harm your dog’s guts because they have the tendency to break into tiny pieces inside his body.
Now, what is the exception? Nowadays, there are commercially produced lamb bones that have been cooked but are safe. Yes, you read that right. These kinds of bones underwent a meticulous baking process that makes them safe for your dog to eat.
So, should you just buy lamb bones from online sellers? That is up to you. If you find this is a more convenient and safer option, then take a shot. However, make sure you read the reviews first and get insights from previous buyers.
A lamb bone usually costs $1-$3, depending on the size. Bones that underwent baking have been immediately sealed. They were only softened slightly to ensure they will not splinter.
2. Don’t give your dog a very small lamb bone.
The dog-sitting service recommends giving your pet a large bone, from the leg and hips to be exact. Do note that the sizes of lamb bones can change depending on the season. In certain countries, lamb is just a seasonal treat because of the lack of fresh green grass.
3. Don’t let your pet ingest the bone.
Take note that a lamb bone is not meant to be eaten. It is only recommended for chewing and not for eating. As a dog owner, it is important to know about the edible and chewable bones. Lamb bones only fall under the chewable category.
This is the reason why online sellers of lamb bones recommend strict supervision of your dog when giving the bone. As the adage goes, it is better to be safe than sorry.
4. Don’t neglect when you noticed something new to your dog after chewing lamb bone.
Sadly enough, accidents can happen even if you did your best in keeping an eye on your pet. There are instances when bones can get stuck in the dog’s mouth or worse, a big chunk was ingested by your pet. In case this unfortunate event happens, rush your pet to a veterinary hospital.
5. Don’t stop reading, researching, and asking pet authorities for tips
I can’t emphasize this enough. I met so many dog owners who were quite anxious about giving bones to their dogs for the first time. Of course, there was also the cliché that “give your dog a lamb bone and he will fine.” Now I realize that some clichés are not really worth believing.
Let’s just add the fact that you have to keep an eye on your dog when giving him lamb bones. This is a must, especially if you have not given one to your pet before. Your dog’s overall health and wellness is still your number one priority here.
If you are still in doubt, the best thing to do is to first seek a veterinarian’s opinion. Your vet can determine whether you should actually give your dog a lamb bone. In most cases, animal doctors will not encourage you to do it, especially if the dog has a serious health concern. Some will just agree thinking that it is beneficial for your dog’s recreation.
These days, many veterinarians do not recommend including bones in a dog’s diet, regardless of the fact that dogs have powerful digestive acids. You will not even see a sign of an undigested bone in the poop in case it was swallowed.
The vet will first check the dog’s health condition. Some dogs are susceptible to pancreatitis which involves the inflammation of the pancreas and damage to its surrounding organs. This medical condition can kill dogs when untreated.
Check your dog’s medical history before giving him a raw lamb bone. If he suffered from kidney failure or has issues with his digestion, do not give him one and just look for safer alternatives.
There you go! I hope you learned something new with regards to giving your pet a lamb bone. As I have mentioned, there is nothing wrong with giving a fresh, raw bone to your dog. As long as he loves it and he can chew well, go for it!