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domingo, 29 de julho de 2018

Unsafe Toys

The wide range of pet toys on the market offer something for every pet and every budget. All choices are not equally appealing or safe for every pet though. The age, size/breed, and personality of each pet are important factors when choosing toys for a pet, whether as a gift for your own pets or for other pets in your life.

Dogs and Bones

I have heard "my dog does just fine with bones" too many times to count. And, some dogs are fine with bones. Many dogs are not. Most of the bones in pet supply stores are hard and brittle, some are filled with a "marrow" treat.
The size of the dog, the bone, and how enthusiastic the dog is about chewing and playing with the bone all come into play. Dogs that like to play catch or fetch do better with soft, sturdy toys -- with less damage to teeth and gums.

The Dangers of Bones - The top worries about bones are:

-Broken teeth
-Bone stuck on lower jaw or lodged in upper jaw.
-Bone swallowed or stuck in pharynx or throat.
-Bone ingested, causing gastrointestinal obstruction or rupture.

I am not a fan of bones as chew toys for dogs. The above scenarios often involve surgery or at least anesthesia or sedation to remedy the problem. The risks outweigh the fun.

Safe Chew Bone Alternatives

For the dogs who like to chew and/or play catch and fetch, I recommend a durable, non-destructible, rubber bone, ball, or flying disc.
Of course, "non-destructible" isn't an absolute, but my dogs have done well with the toys mentioned below. Some dogs chew/ingest any toy though, so as always, supervision is recommended.

A few brands I have used for my dogs over the years:

Kong toys - Large variety of dog toys. Be sure to read labels for weight of dog, age (puppies, seniors, etc.), and chew durability.

West Paw Zogoflex Toys - My review of these durable soft chew toys.

Kibble Nibble - Eager chewers can chip away at this toy, use with supervision.

Stuffed animal toys - various brands - This type of toy clearly isn't for every type of dog, but my Greyhounds love them and get lots of "chewing" play time in without shredding or eating the toy.

NOTE : Rawhides, bully sticks, hooves, ears, and similar treats may be ok for some dogs, but I don't offer them to my dogs. Possible problems include: ingesting too fast (getting lodged in throat, mouth), digestive problems, and risks of salmonella.