What You Need to Know About the FDA Bone Treats Warning


Some pups like to gnaw while others prefer to nibble, but there’s no doubt that al dogs love bones. However, the FDA recently issued a warning to pet owners about health issues from commercially-available “bone treats.”

The FDA received about 68 reports of pet illnesses since 2010 related to a variety of treats available online, at grocery stores and pet retailers. These incidents involved products described as “Ham Bones,” “Pork Femur Bones,” “Rib Bones,” and “Smokey Knuckle Bones.”

The reports from owners and veterinarians affected approximately 90 dogs. The claimed illnesses ranged from digestive track blockages and diarrhea to choking, vomiting and, in 15 cases, death.

In the wake of these reports, it’s crucial for retailers to be a source of reassurance and education for concerned pet parents. Here are a few key tips about bone treats to pass along to customers:

1. Talk to your vet about treats
There are a wide variety of treats in different materials available on the market today. To find the right one for their unique pet, owners should discuss options with their veterinarian.

2. Research brands before buying
Like any smart shopper, pet parents should research dog treats for reports of pet health issues. Retailers should also be well versed about the quality and safety of products on their shelves, and pass that knowledge onto customers with expert recommendations and information.

3. Closely supervise dogs with new treats
After bringing home treats, it’s important to monitor pets for bad reactions or health issues, such as choking, vomiting or intestinal issues. If owners observe any ill effects, they should immediately contact their veterinarian.

4. Keep butcher bones out of reach
Chicken, ham or other uncooked bones should always be kept out of pets’ reach. These leftovers on the kitchen table or in the trash are often too brittle for dogs, and can break and cause injury if consumed.


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