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FDA: Beware of Bone Treats for Dogs

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Nov. 28, 2017 -- The FDA is warning dog owners not to feed their pets chew treats sold as “bone treats” after 90 dogs got sick after eating them, including 15 dogs that died.

The agency says these are treats sold at pet and grocery stores labeled as “ham bones,” “pork femur bones,” “rib bones,” and “smoky knuckle bones.” They may be dried or baked and have smoke or other flavorings added. The agency didn’t say which of the products were involved in the pet deaths and illnesses.

An FDA spokeswoman said more than 20 brands were connected to the illnesses. The most commonly reported brands, the agency says, are Boots & Barkley, Dentley's, Dynamic Pet Products, Grillerz, and Merrick. The agency did not, however, provide a list of specific products involved. 

Some of the injuries reported to the FDA include:

  • Blockage of a dog's stomach or bowels
  • Choking
  • Cuts and other wounds in the mouth or throat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Bleeding from the rectum

To keep your pet safe, the agency also says you shouldn’t give it bones from chicken or other animals from the kitchen table. It also says you should be careful when you throw away turkey or chicken carcasses or beef bones, since dogs are notorious for helping themselves to the kitchen trash.

The FDA says it was made aware of problems in this case when someone filed a report about a particular incident involving one of these products. To submit a complaint about a pet food product, go to https://www.safetyreporting.hhs.gov/fpsr/WorkflowLoginIO.aspx?

WebMD Article Reviewed by Neha Pathak, MD on November 28, 2017

Sources

FDA, "No Bones (or Bone Treats) About It: Reasons Not to Give Your Dog Bones."

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