USFDA issues warning over bone treats for dogs

A pet dalmation. Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has issued a warning for dog owners to avoid giving their pets bone treats which may be available in stores.

Around 68 dog owners or veterinarians have reported pet illnesses related to the animals eating bone treats. Over 90 dogs have been reported sick including 15 deaths.

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The USFDA says the affected treats differ from uncooked butcher-type bones because they are processed and packaged for sale as dog treats. The products may be dried through smoking or baking and could also contain preservatives.

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Among the types of treats listed in the warning are: ham bones, pork femur bones, rib bones and smoky knuckle bones.

“Giving your dog a bone treat might lead to an unexpected trip to your veterinarian, a possible emergency surgery, or even death for your pet,” veterinarian Carmela Stamper told the USFDA.

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A long list of illnesses have been reported in dogs who have ingested the bone treats including:

  • Gastrointestinal obstruction (blockage in the digestive tract)
  • Choking
  • Cuts and wounds in the mouth or on the tonsils
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Bleeding from the rectum, and/or
  • Death. Approximately fifteen dogs reportedly died after eating a bone treat.

The USFDA says to also avoid giving your dog a bone from the kitchen table and to make sure they are not able to get into your trash either.

While it is obvious to many, the USFDA says people need to avoid chicken and turkey bones as they are too brittle and will easily splinter.

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