Choose the safe rawhide chewing
Research has shown that chewing rawhide helps clean teeth and can reduce the development of dental disease, and rawhide treats are much less likely than bones or hooves to damage a dog’s teeth. And chewing rawhide is fun for most dogs. There are, however, a few risks to keep in mind.
Rawhide consists mostly of protein and fiber, so it is not a high-calorie treat. However, rawhide does have some calories and can contribute to obesity if fed in large amounts.
Concerns about dangerous chemicals in rawhide treats do not appear to be justified. However, as with any food product, there is a possibility of bacterial contamination, and rawhide products are sometimes recalled for this reason. People who handle rawhide should wash their hands afterward, and rawhides should be discarded after a few days or if they are wet or soiled.
Rarely, rawhides can cause obstructions in the throat or stomach of dogs that swallow large pieces. Dogs that tend to do this should be given rawhides too large to swallow, and the treats should be taken away when the dog has torn off chunks or softened the treat enough that it could be swallowed.
Chewing rawhide can be good for a dog’s behavioral and oral health. With a few precautions, it can be a safe and fun canine activity.