Is It OK for My Pet to Eat Leftover Bones?

By: Cailin Heinze, VMD, MS, DACVN  |  Tuesday, November 24, 2015

A dog chewing on a bone is iconic; however, the cons of giving bones to your pet outweigh the benefits. Bones can cause some pretty nasty health problems. Chicken and turkey bones become brittle when cooked and are likely to break into sharp pieces and cut your dog’s lips, tongue—or even the esophagus, stomach or intestine, which can cause a potentially life-threatening illness. (Poor pup!)
Dogs commonly swallow large chunks of larger ham or beef bones whole, which may lead to an intestinal blockage that requires emergency surgery. And dogs can painfully damage or break their teeth chewing on bones and need dental surgery.
Raw bones are likely to be contaminated with harmful bacteria—such as Salmonella or E. coli, which can make your pet or even your human family sick (through contact and dog kisses).
A little bit of cooked meat or homemade dog cookie is a safer treat. Or opt for a chew toy instead.