Canines have this innate yearning to chew. They cannot choose wisely on things they can eat. Bones are one of the chew toys at which canines gnaw.  Your dog wouldn’t mind not regarding your company when it sees a bone. That’s how crazy dogs can get when they are finally served bones, one of their greatest meals. But hey, not all bones are ideal for your dog. This brings us to the question;

Can dogs eat rib bones?

Offering your dog rib bones, whether cooked or raw, poses potential dangers. Rib bones should be off-limits in regards to your dog’s meal. The shards may lead to choking for your dog. Besides, it may cause damage to your dog’s mouth, intestine, and throat. Note that once a bone breaks into shreds, it can easily obstruct the intestines and bring about lacerations in the dog’s internal organs and mouth. 

Continue reading to get more useful information!

Why Are Dogs Obsessed With Chew Toys?

One of life’s greatest mysteries is the obsession of dogs with chew toys. Over the years, canines usually enjoy nibbling on bones or rubber toys than sitting next to their owners to receive pleasurable body rubs.

People wonder why this happens. Why do dogs treat chew toys as if they were the world’s greatest treasure?

First, your canine should be chewing on his favorite toy than feasting on your valuables like the sofa, shoes, and other items. For dogs, chewing on hard objects is quite beneficial. It keeps their teeth and gums clean. It also ensures that their jaws remain strong.

There are reasons to support dog’s obsessions with chew toys. However, we can’t explain why they do so. Some possible reasons are listed below.

  1. Dogs want to play too. Just like children playing with toys, chewing on toys for dogs is a pastime. Some canines have also developed a kind of intimacy with their toys. The dog’s brain, just like humans, has a particular spot that lightens up whenever it sees a toy or something that it loves.
  1. Toys can be a source of comfort to a dog, especially when you are away from them. The toy becomes a playmate, and he can chew with satisfaction. Doing this for the dog eases the anxiety caused by separation from you.
  2. Puppies behave like human beings while teething. Pups tend to chew more as their baby teeth fall out to be replaced by adult ones. So, as a pet owner, you may need to keep a lot of chew toys and to ascertain your canine loves the most.
  3. Dogs sometimes chew on toys out of frustration and boredom. Where your dog wishes to play with another but cannot, it may let out its frustration on the toy. Also, when afraid or bored, the toy comes in handy.
  4. Researchers also base their explanation on the dog’s instincts based on evolution. In the distant past, dogs developed teeth, which enabled them to crush bones to feast on the marrow, which contains many nutrients. Today, we believe the habit of gnawing on bones is instinctive for dogs.

Some Chew Toys For Dogs

Some of these are bones, cow hooves, nylon chew toys, ice cubes, sticks, and pig’s ears. Veterinarians have, however, warned pet owners against giving their dogs these items to chew.

They argue that some dogs have suffered from the cracked tooth as a result of chewing on these toys. Another is that a dog may have to undergo surgery over pain or digestive issues related to gnawing on toys.

Ice Cubes

It is not a chew toy, but some individuals give their pups ice to nibble on. It usually occurs when the weather is hot or while the dog is experiencing teething. Unfortunately, ice can be firm enough to cause teeth breakage in dogs.


Pet owners sometimes play ‘fetch’ with their canines using sticks. The stick later becomes chew toys for the dog. However, sticks are not a good option as they are one of the most dangerous to dogs. They often puncture the dog’s eyes, abdomen, mouth, and heart!

Nylon Chews

As toys, these are too hard for your canine to chew. Chewing on it may lead to tooth fracture. You can perform a check on the nylon chew toy before giving your dog. Try to make an indentation on it with your fingernail. If it leaves no indent, it is too hard for your dog’s teeth.

Worse still, your dog may rip off parts of the chew toy and swallow it. This likely obstruct the digestive tract and may result in seizures since the chew toy is toxic.

Pig’s ears 

Although these promises some chew time for the dog, its exterior can be very harmful. It usually causes digestive upset in canines due to swallowing of torn off parts. It can cause choking as well as carpet stains. Aside from these, pig’s ears allow for bacterial growth on them.


Bones supply minerals and some other nutrients to dogs. Also, it helps in satisfying the dog’s appetite. Apart from these, chewing causes saliva enzymes to get stimulated. It also helps to avoid the buildup of plaque and helps prevent gum diseases.

If a dog chews more on bones, the likelihood of him scratching or licking his paws reduces.

However, cooked or uncooked, bones remain hard enough to damage the dog’s teeth. Sometimes, while the dog is chewing away, it splints and may cause digestive irritation and puncture of the mouth.

Dogs do not need the calcium and minerals present in bones. Wild dogs and wolves need it, but domesticated breeds of dogs do not rely on this as the only source of their dietary needs. They can be fed other supplements, which make up for their balanced diet.

Rib Bones And Its Potential Hazards

It is possible that you saw packages of rib bones at the butchers’ and wish to get your dog some. Buying this treat for your canine, though it seems harmless, could endanger your pet.

Pork is known as a high source of protein. However, you should not consider it as a treat for your canine. It is dangerous for dogs. One of the reasons is that it could split into fragments.

Raw rib bones are equally a wrong choice for your dog. Apart from the ability to splinter into little pieces, it can get infected with bacteria and salmonella.

Consumption of the fatty tissues on the rib bone can lead to nausea and diarrhea, resulting in dehydration, loss of protein, and other intestinal upset symptoms.

Also, feasting on rib bones by dogs can lead to a life-endangering disease known as pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is related to the consumption of high levels of fat.

How To Pick Chew Toys For Your Dog

To ascertain the best chew toy for your beloved pet, you may need to carry out some checks or tests.

How soft is it?

You need to ensure that the chosen toy is not overly soft or poorly manufactured, so your dog easily breaks it into pieces to get inside stuff.

How hard?

Use your thumbnail to carry out this test. Once you notice that the toy does not budge to the pressure exerted, even for a little bit, it’s most likely dangerous to your dog’s teeth.

Shape and size

The toy must not be too small to get easily choked on by your dog. Your choice of the toy should not be too big as well. If it is too big, the jaw could get easily injured. Make sure that your pup’s muzzle or tongue does not get stuck on it.

The Exterior

Take note of the toy’s coating. Do not cover with flavorings, which may bring about indigestion or give rise to bacterial growth. A good example is the covering on pig’s ears.

Easy to Wash

Realistically, your choice of chew toy should be easy to clean in the washing machine or dishwasher for periodical maintenance and disinfection.


Your dog’s chew toy should be one that could offer a reasonable period of chewing enjoyment. It keeps the dog occupied. Also, it allows you to stuff treats that your pet enjoys in it.

Which Bones Are Safe For Dogs?

Are you wondering whether there are bones that are considered safe for your dog’s consumption? For the sake of this subject, I have categorized bones into edible bones and the play bones.

Edible Bones

These are usually in birds – chicken wings, turkey necks, and chicken wings. These are hollow and are non-weights.

Also, they are soft and can be easily pulverized inside a meat grinder but do not contain marrow. The edible bones are a rich source of phosphorus, calcium, and trace nutrients that dogs need as part of their raw feed.

Play Bones 

These are mainly for recreation, and are big pieces of beef, hip bones, or bison femur and contain a lot of marrow. Although they offer mental stimulation to dogs and promote their oral health, they are neither meant for chewing nor swallowing.

Whenever dogs chew on these play bones, especially those containing plenty of meat, cartilage, and soft tissue, floss and brush their teeth properly. It breaks down tartar and reduces to a great extent, the risk of gum-related diseases.

Some Safety Measures When Giving Dogs Bones 

Here are some useful guidelines to follow to make sure your dog remains safe, even when giving him play bones:

  1. It should remain uncooked. Feed your dog with fresh raw bones and serve it on a surface that is easy to clean.
  2. Supervise your dog while gnawing or playing on a bone. This way, you can quickly react if he is in any form of danger.
  3. In a home where there is more than one dog, ensure that you separate them before feeding them to avoid fights.
  4. Never feed a play bone to a dog that might likely swallow it whole or eat it up in huge bites.

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Refrain from feeding your dog with rib bones as it easily breaks into pieces than other kinds of bones.

As an alternative, you can feed your dog dental bones of high quality. These are natural and do not contain extra fat, corn, sugar, or other animal bi-products.

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