Many people feed their dogs bones. From the perspective of canine nutrition; they know that bones provide valuable calcium and other minerals in addition to some protein.
A recent study was conducted on raw-fed dogs to look at the effects of consuming raw; meaty bones (or RMBs) when compared with kibble-fed dogs. The results led the researchers to surmise that “RMBs might not be safe; for all dogs, especially those with preexisting joint problems.
The study looked at 102 client-owned adult dogs; divided into two groups: one group was fed a commercially available kibble diet, while; the second group received a commercially available canned food supplemented with RMBs. According to lead researcher Dr. Karen Becker, the kibble-fed dogs were those that had regular veterinary; checkups and those that had never been diagnosed with or treated for any joint abnormality. The RMBs were beef femur bones from a single source, irradiated to kill bacteria; (which is believed to be as effective as high-temperature steam sterilization) and available commercially as food for pets. Femurs of comparable size and weight were also obtained from a USDA-certified; supplier and used to prepare the canned diets by supplementing them with calcium carbonate powder.
The results: Dogs on the kibble diet maintained their body; condition score throughout the study, while those on the RMB diet lost weight; steadily until 14 weeks into the study when they began leveling off. As well, the average circumference of the stifle (knee joint) and elbow joints; decreased to a greater degree in the RMB-fed dogs than those on kibble. The researchers noted the diminishing joint size and weight difference between; the two groups over time to be supportive of their initial hypothesis that RMBs may; cause undue stress on smaller or more delicate joints.
According to Dr. Becker, “the study shows that there could be different effects from; consuming raw meaty bones versus dry extruded kibble.” However, she does acknowledge that neither group was monitored after 24 weeks; it is possible that further research may show less pronounced results as both groups reached equilibrium at 36 weeks.
Unfortunately for many pet owners, this evidence is too compelling to be ignored. Considering the gravity of the findings, I would discourage you from; choosing to feed your dogs RMBs or even recommending this as a viable; diet to pet owners considering it for their pets.
Bones for dogs with sensitive stomachs
Many people feed their dog’s bones. From the perspective of canine nutrition, they know that bones provide; valuable calcium and other minerals in addition to some protein.
A recent study was conducted on raw-fed dogs to look at the effects; of consuming raw meaty bones (or RMBs) when compared with kibble-fed dogs. The results led the researchers to surmise that “RMBs might not be safe; for all dogs, especially those with preexisting joint problems.”