Can dogs Eat Raw Chicken Bones & Meat ?
Yes, your Dog can eat raw chicken bones and meat unless he is a Gobbler , has dental problems that prevent him from chewing and crushing them well, an allergy to chicken meat or if he ingests a large quantity which would result in very hard stools or excrement difficult to evacuate naturally by your dog.
What raw poultry bones can or even should dogs eat?
First of all, you should know that all dogs, small and large, can eat raw chicken bones.
Chicken bones should preferably be surrounded by a little chicken meat or served to your dog with his daily food or a little bread.
It is also recommended that you stay close to your dog to make sure he doesn’t swallow the bones without chewing them, even if it means holding the bone by one end and holding out the other end to your dog to encourage him to chew and not just gobble the bones!
The only bone that I would not recommend giving your dog raw or cooked is a thin, pointed bone, like a needle , found in the thigh of the chicken.
This bone, called the “Fibula”, if eaten whole without being chewed by your dog, could actually cause a perforation somewhere along his digestive system.
This one bone, along with the chicken’s beak and skull, are the only bones, raw or cooked, that I do not recommend giving to your dog.
The other raw poultry bones can be eaten by your dog and if they are cooked (with a bit of bread), you will have to watch him to make sure that your dog chews the bones so that the splinters do not cause him any problems.
Your dog can have the chicken neck, the breast with the chicken rib cage, the complete wings and the poultry thighs & legs after you have removed the Fibula bone (see the attached pictures showing the fibula bone).
Which chicken bones are safe for dogs?
If you are hesitant to give your dog raw chicken bones and you still want to treat him, you should know that the safest raw chicken bones to give a dog are either the neck or the wing tips.
Normally all dogs can eat them without risk, just hold them by one end so that your dog takes the time to chew them to avoid swallowing them at once ( risk of choking if your dog swallows without chewing ).
Are raw chicken bones Good for dogs?
In fact, uncooked chicken bones (especially chicken wings) are the best for dogs because they are the easiest to break by the dog and to digest quickly without forgetting that they are easy to find and are not expensive!
Don’t worry, because when these bones arrive in the dog’s stomach, they will dissolve completely which will only make your dog’s stool white for a day or two LOL.
Raw chicken bones ensure a good dentition for the dog and prevent the puppy from dental problems for many years.
Bones in general are a real treat for dogs, Raw bones are one of the things dogs love to eat the most, they keep them busy and strengthen their jaws, their oral hygiene and provide them with the calcium and phosphorus they need.
Other benefits of chewing bones for dogs :
- Dogs love meaty bones, it also encourages them to release their natural instinct.
- Chewing bones will cause the release of Dopamine which helps to calm dogs!
- Bones are rich in calcium, good for the development of your dog’s bones.
- Excellent Roughage for healthy guts
- Healthy teeth and gums
- Raw bones are rich in magnesium, zinc and selenium and are therefore excellent for boosting your dog’s immunity.
- Chewing on bones is good for your dog’s joints because they contain glucosamine, not to mention that the bone marrow is full of nutrients and vitamins too.
- Healthier coat and skin especially if you make bone broth from marrow bones that contains connective tissues and give it them as a topper or just a treat .
Tip when feeding raw chicken bones to your dog
It is advisable to give raw chicken bones to your dog with some meat on it, especially if your dog is a Gobbler and does not chew his food too much.
The meat around the raw chicken bones will make him chew and break the chicken bones into small pieces before swallowing them.
Don’t give too many chicken bones without some meat on them , like my friend Jane once did, who gave her dog a whole turkey carcass after she deboned it.
Her dog “Bear” suffered from severe constipation and was immediately hospitalized and had surgery because of it!
One chicken wing or one leg of chicken for a medium sized dog, it’s a bit the norm, make sure that they are raw and that there is some flesh on them.
You have to supervise your dog the first time you give him chicken bones or other bones like the femur bone of a sheep…etc and make sure that your dog will chew the bones well and not gobbles them completely.
Why are people afraid to give chicken bones to their dogs then?
There is a reason for this, because chicken bones can be very dangerous if boiled (cooked), why?
Quite simply, a cooked chicken bone is dangerous for dogs, especially puppies, because once boiled, this chicken bone will lose all its marrow, water and collagen and it will tend to break in the mouth of the dog in very small pieces, sharp as razor blades and can injure your dog in the mouth, stomach, intestines and see it kill him because of intestinal perforations or occlusions …etc.
You should never give cooked chicken bones to your dog, and not only chicken bones, but all cooked bones are a danger for the dog, so avoid your dog to steal some of them during a barbecue party, for example!!
Paralysis of the hind legs of puppies due to raw chicken meat or bones
Another reason you might be persuaded to give raw chicken bones or raw chicken for a puppy is that research has linked some cases of paralysis of the hind legs of puppies to eating this raw or semi-cooked chicken meat because of a bacteria called “Campylobacter”.
This study is controversial, and the cases are very rare and it must be said that puppies affected by this paralysis, generally recover after 6 months.
What to do if your dog shows discomfort after eating chicken bones?
Don’t try to make your dog vomit ! the regurgitated bones can get stuck in his esophagus and suffocate him or even cause internal cuts and bleeding.
If you notice that your dog feels a little sick after you have given him chicken bones, make him eat some bread or give him an extra meal (his kibbles for example) so that the bones mix with his usual food and do not form a compact block in the intestines.
How do I know if I should take my dog to the vet after he has eaten chicken bones?
If you want to check if your dog is constipated after a feast of chicken bones, put your hand under his belly, a little backwards, and try to feel his lower belly, and if you feel something hard and the dog growls or makes sounds of discomfort, then you should take him to see his Vet.
Or if your dog doesn’t poop at the usual time, wait another hour or two, and if he doesn’t go to the toilet, take him to the vet immediately, he may be constipated.
If you notice that your dog vomits a large volume, has bloody stools, or adopts the position of prayer (front legs bent and hindquarters raised), then know that he suffers from an intestinal obstruction.
Don’t forget to also check your dog’s gums if he hasn’t cut himself (all around his teeth), also check his tongue, and if he doesn’t have pieces of bone stuck in his mouth or between his teeth!
What are the best chicken bones (the best pieces) to give for your dog?
You can give your dog any piece of raw chicken without deboning it, but the two best pieces that dogs love are chicken thighs and wings.
The turkey and chicken necks are very popular too, they contain 60% meat and the rest are bones, just make sure you freeze them before you give them to your dog so he doesn’t swallow them in one bite !
Cooked bones have almost no nutritional value and are a danger for the dog while a raw bone is rich in fat, calcium and phosphorus which will benefit your dog.
Can I give raw chicken bones to a puppy ?
Yes, you can of course introduce your puppy to the BARF diet as soon as he reaches 8 weeks , and you can give him raw chicken meat with the bones, but on condition that you crush it with a kitchen hammer for example and remove some bones that you think are dangerous.
In fact this is what happens with canids in the wild, the she-wolf will regurgitate for example pre-chewed pieces of a wild duck for her cubs and it’s the same for a puppy, just make sure to break the bones with the meat all around.
Giving raw or undercooked chicken meat and bones to a dog and the risk of Salmonella or Polyradiculoneuritis :
Salmonella is part of the intestinal flora of many dogs, and they even have this bacterium in their mouth (saliva).
The risk of Salmonella is therefore for dog owners who feed raw chicken or chicken bones to their dogs.
You have to respect the sanitary standards when feeding ur dog, for example:
- Don’t feed your dog raw chicken until after you have finished eating yourself.
- Wash your hands well using hot water for 20 seconds after you feed your dog raw chicken or other meat of course.
- It is best to freeze raw meat pieces before serving them to your dog and use gloves when feeding raw meat and chicken bones to your dog.
Polyradiculoneuritis is an autoimmune disease that may be caused by exposure to a type of bacteria commonly found on chicken meat.
Studies on this bacteria, said to be harmful to puppies if found in raw chicken, were not conclusive after a study done at an European university.
What are the best bones to give for small dogs?
That’s right, small dogs can’t chew on bones like a Pitbull or German Shepherd, because small dogs have small jaws and don’t have the strength to break some bones!
For small dogs, I recommend chicken , duck or turkey wings, because they might break the bones and get all the benefits.
You can also give them the back of a chicken and the neck, half the neck of a chicken for a small dog and this every day.
Finally, I would advise you to give small and medium size dogs the chicken legs, this part of the chicken is tender and your dog could easily overcome the raw bones of the chicken leg and chew it easily.
What kind of raw bones can dogs eat?
All raw bones are good to give to the dog (not cooked), dogs can have the bones of poultry, sheep, beef … the only rule is that the larger the dog, the larger the bone can be too.
Which raw bones should I choose for my dog?
There are two kinds of bones, soft bones like chicken carcass and hard dense bones (marrow bones) like knuckle bones and beef ribs.
Bones can also be considered either meal bones or edible bones, which can completely replace the dog’s meal, such as when you give him a complete meaty raw chicken carcass or raw lamb neck, raw lamb ribs, turkey carcass, chicken feet and backs.
You can also if you have a big dog (adult big dog with appropriate chewing habits) give him pork feet or tail, venison, beef ribs and lamb, moose and deer even Elk antlers and Bison bones.
On the other hand there are recreational bones, these are the bones that are given to the dog just as a hobby, they should not contain much meat attached to them, it’s like beef femur (raw), just make sure that the bone is larger than your dog’s mouth and that it is also fresh, especially if it contains some meat and marrow in it.
These kinds of hard, hard-to-chew bones are good for your dog’s dental health, jaw exercise and mental stimulation, just make sure your dog’s teeth are strong enough for the bone you choose.
You should avoid weight-bearing bones, especially for small dogs and puppies. These bones are hard and can break into small, sharp pieces even if you give them raw.
How often should I give my dog bones?
You should not give your dog many bones at once, especially when they are meal bones, such as raw poultry carcasses, you risk your dog eating them all and may suffer from constipation!
Give your dog raw bones in moderation and once a week, except for recreational bones, like large hard bones, your dog will not be able to grind it all up at once as he surely would if it was raw soft bones, like chicken or turkey necks or wings.
For raw fed dogs, edible bones can be part of the dog’s daily menu, but for kibble fed dogs, you will have to be careful not to give too much calcium to your dog because his food probably already contains enough.
Is there an alternative to raw bones for my dog if he can’t chew them?
Yes, if for some reason you can’t give your dog raw bones, and you don’t want your dog to miss out on all the benefits of chewing on bones for dogs, you can either:
Grind the bones at home before serving them to your dog, here is a link to a Good bone grinder on amazon (only $58 at the time I write this article ) if you are interested in this solution.
Or buy directly bone Meal that you will add to your dog’s meals.
Here is also a link to the product on amazon so you don’t have to buy the bone powder used in agriculture and toxic for animals!
This bone Meal is rich in calcium and phosphorus and is very beneficial for the good development of the bones of your pooch.
My dog swallowed a cooked chicken bones , could they hurt him ?
Don’t worry, because chances are that your dog will not have any problems even if he has eaten one or more cooked chicken bones.
What you need to do now to make his chances of getting away with it even greater is to :
- Give him some soft food like bread to cushion or wrap the bone shards along his digestive tract.
- Monitor your dog and make sure he doesn’t have breathing difficulties , vomiting or showing any signs of abdominal pain or stomach swelling.
- Watch for the next three days for white stools (a good sign that the bones have been digested)
If you notice blood in his stools, take him immediately to the Vet
Finally, the only danger that your dog is mainly exposed to after swallowing a cooked chicken bone is that when the bone is broken into pieces, they will injure your dog in the mouth, throat, or parietal system.
It is very rare but if for 72 hours you do not notice white stools, you will see your dog give signs of stomach discomfort, swelling in the belly, blood in the stool or constipation and obstruction (he no longer relieves himself because of an intestinal obstruction), in this case, you must take your dog to his veterinarian.
What is the risk for a dog that eats a cooked chicken (duck/turkey), lamb or rabbit bone?
The risk of breaking a tooth, especially for puppies and small breed dogs.
There is also a risk that a piece of bone gets stuck in the digestive tract or is planted in the colon, a laceration of the stomach or in the worst case an intestinal perforation or the presence of blood in the stool of the injured dog.
What you should never do when your dog eats fine cooked bones is never try to make him vomit.
In fact, a sharp piece of bone can injure him in his esophagus as it rises from the stomach.
Check right away if there is no blood in your dog’s vomit if he vomits by himself !
It is also necessary to be careful never to give big bones to small dogs, they are not rare that they get stuck in , the mouth in the bone, look at the picture.
Raw chicken bones are therefore not dangerous for dogs, as long as you respect the instructions I have given you in this article, and are even the best raw bones to give to your dog.
Good to know too
Bones forbidden for a dog, because they can get stuck in his esophagus and an endoscopy would be necessary to perform the extraction, these bones are:
- The ribs and vertebrae of lamb.
- Pork ribs
Chicken fat can cause pancreatitis for your dog in the following days, the solution is to leave your dog without eating for 24 to 48 hours, but let him drink water.