Are antlers safe for dogs?
Original Question: Dr. Greenway has made it very clear that giving our Sheltie a bone is not a wise thing to do because of possible broken teeth. Would the same hold true for deer antlers which are so commonly for sale in pet stores? Our dog enjoys them occasionally but now I’m thinking they may be just as dangerous given their similar consistency. Thanks in advance for your good advice. - Doug
Thanks for your question.
Hard bone-type treats are not good for dogs. Bone, or anything resembling it such as antlers, is extremely hard and can break or fracture your dog’s teeth. This is much more common than people think. The hard bone or antler material can also splinter into shards that can penetrate the tissue of the mouth, pharynx, stomach or the rest of the digestive tract.
Just because something is for sale in a store doesn’t mean it is good for our pets. What I recommend is that you consider using something else that doesn’t come with this risk. An appropriate treat would be one that is low in calories and soft enough to prevent dental trauma. I assume you would also like something that your dog can be entertained by. A really great idea is buying a large ‘kong’ which is a hard rubber toy that you can pack with different food materials such as wet food, kibble, vegetables and any other appropriate treat. A treat like this will make your dog lick, chew, ingest and engage with the toy for longer.
I hope this helps.
Dr. Clayton Greenway
Disclaimer: healthcareforpets.com and its team of veterinarians and clinicians do not endorse any products, services, or recommended advice. All advice presented by our veterinarians, clinicians, tools, resources, etc is not meant to replace a regular physical exam and consultation with your primary veterinarian or other clinicians. We always encourage you to seek medical advice from your regular veterinarian.
- Do you recommend a stool test for my dog who is on a raw food diet?
- Answered by: Dennis Chmiel, DVM, MBA
- Nov 25, 2020
- Do small or large breed dogs have more problems with their teeth?
- Answered by: Jeanne Perrone, MS, CVT, VTS (Dentistry)
- Sep 5, 2020
- How do dogs contract leptospirosis and how can it be prevented?
- Answered by: Dr. Alex Avery, BVSc
- Jun 21, 2019