Chewing is a very important activity for your pup. Not only does it play a key role in oral health, but is also mentally stimulating and can occupy them for long periods of time, depending on the chew.
A very popular chew that is sold in most pet stores is raw hide. Dogs tend to enjoy the beef, chicken or liver flavored bones or sticks, however it is important to understand what they are made of and what dangers this can create for your dog.
Raw hide is made from the inner layer of cow or even horse hides, The outer layer is usually used to make leather products such as car seats, purses and other goods. During processing the inner hide gets thoroughly cleaned and chemically treated to preserve the product during transport. The hide is then soaked in solutions to strip it from hair and fat, which can involve toxic chemicals. The hide is then “puffed” to make layering easier, which is also done using chemicals.
Once the inner layer is separated, it is whitened using hydrogen peroxide or bleach, which also removes the smell. Some raw hide chews are left white, but many are colored using red 40 or bleached even more for looks. In order to preserve these looks, companies have used glues, mercury and even formaldehyde. These processes all go into the making of the chew. So when your dog consumes this product, it is safe to say that it will no be digested, as your dog is munching on a “leather by-product” that turns into indigestible rubber and can create life-threatening blockages in their digestive tract. Therefore, stay away from these chemical leather sticks and try these instead:
The Benebone – This is a bacon flavored nylon chew that is not ingestible and makes it easy to leverage themselves, due to their practical shape. This chew can last you weeks or even months. Definitely a favorite at Pure Pet!
The Himalayan Chew – This is an all natural yak milk chew that has no added preservatives or binding agents. It comes in different sizes fit for any pup and allows for slow chewing. This hard cheese snack is definitely a winner.
The Pig Ears – These popular snacks are great for pups who need a lighter chew that gives a little the more it is chewed on. These are great because they do not smell and are fairly cheap compared to other chews.
The Bullies – These long lasting sticks are 100% digestible and available USA made and odor-free at Pure Pet. They are tough and chewy and great for any dog. A very popular chew and your dog is guaranteed to love these.
The Cow Hoof – This is a great chew for your small and medium dogs and a wonderful dental chew. The only downfall – they are quite smelly!
The Raw Bone – These are a great source of Calcium and very digestible. They are a very safe chew, that lasts a long time. Tip: Never feed your dog a cooked bone as they can splinter and cause internal damage.
The Elk Antler – This is a very clean chew! They do not have any grease or smell and are a great source of vitamins and minerals such as Calcium and Zinc. Also, they are a great dental chew because they help remove tartar.
The Water Buffalo Horn - This high protein, low fat chew is super long lasting and does not splinter. Therefore, this is a safe chew and a great option for any size dog. Big dogs should, however, only get chews with 2 open ends to prevent their tongue from getting stuck.
The listed chews are a healthy and safe alternative for your pup, however we recommend never leaving your dog unattended with a consumable or small chew because these can become choking hazard. Stop in the store and let us help you find the perfect chew option for your dog!