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5 things you need to know about bone food and dogs

Is it okay to feed bones or bone meal to dogs?

I want to talk about bones, bone meal and how to keep your dog safe and healthy. The most common questions that come our way are:

  • Is it okay to feed bones?
  • What should you do if your dog doesn’t like or doesn’t like bones?
  • Is bone meal suitable for dogs?
  • Should calcium supplements be given when feeding bones?

Instead of beating around the bush, I dive right in.

1. Is it okay to feed bones and what types?

The myth about the dangers of feeding chickens and other bones persists. All you need to know is that you should never feed cooked bones and it is okay to feed raw bones. I don’t like dogs to have large marrow bones or long ribs. If you’d like to read more about why, click here.

best raw bones for dogs

2. What should you do if your dog doesn’t like bones or doesn’t like to eat bones?

There are a few cases where it is not recommended for a dog to eat bones. Some dogs are so weak that they cannot digest bones or they suffer from back pain, which is often related to constipation. In such cases, you can supplement plant-based sources of calcium, which are highly bioavailable and easily absorbed. I like to perform a HairQ test on my dog ​​every six months to see what his calcium and mineral levels are and adjust the dosage if necessary.

Please note: Not every dog ​​absorbs nutrients in the same way. I find that hunting breeds like Lab’s and Golden’s are the digestive kings, while herding dogs have less efficient digestion. Why? It appears that our ancestors bred for working traits, such as herding, and bred the instinct to want to eat the sheep. Unknowingly they cultivated good digestion.

3. Is bone meal suitable for dogs?

I do not recommend feeding bone meal, with the exception of locally produced frozen bone meal. Most bone meal powders are processed with heat, making them difficult to digest and absorb.

Many products come from other countries and the contamination is usually concentrated in the bones.

Some people like to give calcium carbonate powder, an essential ground rock. In nature, dogs would get calcium from plants, meat and bones and not directly from rocks. In other words, in nature, the Earth’s calcium is passed on to plants and prey animals and then to our dogs.

4. Is crumbling, hard, whitish stool normal in dogs?

The answer is yes in dogs that eat bones, such as poultry bones. Usually they are given in the form of raw carcasses or ground in the ready-to-eat frozen raw meat package. I suggest you feed bones or meat with bones no more than three times a week. It takes a little more digestive power and I like to alternate my dog’s poultry with other meats that don’t contain bone. In summary, too much of one thing is simply too much, but it is normal for your dog to have hard, pebbly stools if you fed chicken the night before.

5. Should supplements, such as GreenMin, be given if your dog eats bones?

Absolute. Many people focus so much on calcium and magnesium that they forget about other minerals. The body needs them all to support thousands of different metabolic functions and pathways. Do you remember biochemistry? It’s amazing what happens in the body, but it can’t happen without the building blocks. If there’s one thing to remember, it’s that a deficiency is the first step toward disease.

The great thing about plant minerals is that they contain a balanced profile of nutrients and are easy to regulate by the body. If there is an excess, it is stored or excreted. If there is a mineral deficiency, this will be reflected in a HairQ test.

Recommended reading:

10 steps to bone nutrition. What is safe and what is not?

Which bones are good for dogs?

The right raw bones can save your dog’s teeth and thousands of teeth in dental care

© Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM

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