Typically, elk antlers are a little softer and easier on the teeth than deer antler dog chews. At first glance, deer antlers seem like an ideal chew toy or treat for your pet. Claiming that the evidence is purely anecdotal and therefore of no value would be a bit like saying that your leg broke when you fell from a second floor window, but that the fall can’t be pinned down as the exact cause. And my personal feeling is that we should pay attention. In these situations, emergency surgery is often necessary. Are deer antlers safe for dogs to chew? With anecdotal evidence for the causes of dental fractures, however, we are on somewhat firmer ground. Pippa Mattinson is the best selling author of several books on dogs. You can also join in a discussion on this topic over on the forum. There is a wide range of chew toys on the market specially designed to give dogs the opportunity for recreational chewing that won’t cause them injury. However, deer antlers can be quite dangerous for your dog. And this problem can be made worse if your dog is an aggressive chewer. Deer Antlers for Dogs, Premium, Grade A, Deer Antler Dog Chew, Long Lasting Dog Treat for Your Pet. One small grade a premium quality deer antler dog chew treat you will get either a 2 point or a 3 point that is from 7 to 11 inches long. © Copyright 2020 WorldDeer.org. Antlers are also an extremely long-lasting treat in comparison to other dog chews.. You can choose from whole and split antlers. But you can’t just sit a dog in the dentist’s chair and ask him to open wide. Does My Dog Love Me: Signs Your Dog Loves You, Labernese – A Complete Guide To The Bernese Mountain Dog Lab Mix. When this happens, it usually means that there aren’t any such sources! You may even need to see a specialist veterinarian dentist. Deer antlers aren’t completely safe for dogs – there are risks that can be very expensive to treat. The short answer – yes, antlers are safe! First take it to a professional company that … The hardness of antlers also means they can damage your dog’s teeth and gums if they chew too aggressively or if they have weak teeth. All we can do is talk about the anecdotal evidence. One of the biggest misconceptions of dog ownership is buying hard chew toys and allowing your dog to gnaw on them is helpful to its teeth. This makes it much more difficult to find a novel protein if needed in the future for skin or intestinal issues. Is this something that we can look up online? She is the founder of the Labrador Site and a regular contributor. In other words, if your dog breaks a tooth, you are guaranteed a very expensive trip to the vet. In fact, chewing on hard products like elk or deer antlers for dogs can lead to dental problems like fractured teeth, and internal damage from splintering. We ensure that all our health articles are evidence-based, and factual claims are supported by research. Your vet may disagree! But you have to take into account the fact that other kinds of deer are far more common. You can also gently boil or blanch antlers to soften them and to eliminate any septic bacteria. Chewing on dog antler treats isn’t any different then dogs chewing on other bones or hard substances. Since antlers are naturally shed every year by moose, elk, and other wild deer, you can feel good about buying them, but not as great as your dog will feel as he enjoys gnawing on these incredibly durable and flavorful chews. This same toughness can be quite dangerous for your dog. She is passionate about helping people enjoy their Labradors and lives in Hampshire with her husband and four dogs. It helps keep their teeth clean, and it expends energy and keeps the dog out of trouble and out from under foot. As far as we can tell at the current time, it sadly looks as though antler dog chews may be something you should avoid giving to your four-legged friends. Let’s dig in to get a more complete picture. That is another very expensive vet bill in the thousands of dollars. Feeding Your Labrador Puppy: How Much, Diet Charts And The Best... Major extra-oral or body-wide issues such as toxicity, esophageal or gastrointestinal obstruction or perforation, or gross nutritional imbalance. However, good luck in the past is no guarantee of safety in the future. After all, they’re natural and “sustainably harvested” (elk and deer shed their antlers naturally). Hard chews such as deer antlers can also cause bleeding in the mouth or internally if they splinter and blockages if swallowed, two more reasons to avoid them. Buy our fresh stag deer antlers and buffalo cow horn. J Anat 2005, Harrison C. Nutrition and preventative oral healthcare treatments for canine and feline patients. Deer antlers: a zoological curiosity or the key to understanding organ regeneration in mammals? Antlers are rock hard, and strong chewing dogs will bite down on antlers with all their might. Antlers certainly aren't for every dog (especially overly-aggressive chewers) but for many pups antlers are a great substitute for the traditional dog bone. Some owners have been giving antlers to the dog for years without incident. I find it interesting how so many vet sites will claim a pure natural antler is dangerous. You are not going to see much change from $1000. And there are still more sorts of antlers to choose from, such as moose. I’ve done some reading as well and other articles disagree with this claim.. mostly due to the fact that certain breeds of deer antlers are specifically bad for dogs as they split in small pieces that could harm their intestinal tract. Dogs love to chew and, given the choice, they will clamp down on almost anything, whether it is good or bad for them. Where is the evidence that antlers aren’t safe? This is how teeth are broken or gums are lacerated. Let’s take a closer look to find out if antlers are safe for dogs, and if they should be given as a chew. Well, antlers are a source of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. Because in this instance I believe that the anecdotal evidence we have here is quite useful. What about split antlers , they are cut in half lengthways to expose the marrow. I believe that hard plastic or nylon chews, sterilized bones, cow hooves and antlers are too hard to be safe for most dogs. Health benefits: North American deer and elk antlers last a long time, rarely split or chip and are non-allergic (great news for dogs with allergies). When you have a situation where even experts disagree, and where the evidence is lacking, much of the responsibility shifts to you as the pet owner. Oral health benefits of a daily dental chew in dogs. If you’re a proud puppy parent or even just a dog-lover who has seen “Marley and Me” one too many times, it’s easy to close your eyes and imagine every owner’s worst nightmare: you come home from a long day of work or a much-needed date night to utter chaos. It isn’t just carnivores that like antlers. Generally speaking, the treatment for your dog will be just like it would be for you. In the UK, for example, shed antlers will sometimes have mouse tooth marks in them. It is also important that the chew toy you choose never fits completely into your dogs mouth. In fact, any hard chew material you select will come with the same risks, such as bone or rawhide. The problems with anecdotal evidence arise because it can be difficult to prove that the event in the dog’s life was caused by, rather than simply associated with, the therapy. Plus, strong chewing dogs will whittle down … Like broken bones, broken teeth may often, but not always, have dramatic symptoms. I am so glad I read this. For example, moose antlers are softer than others (such as the hard elk antlers). Before you do that, it is worth considering the outcome of a tooth fracture for your dog. So we have a situation where many vets are saying, “Do NOT let your dog chew on antlers! informative article of the risks, but as a purist, I’d rather her chew organic products rather than plastic as she tears into it and ingests toxins. Merck Vet Manual. And I’ll take a moment now to explain why I believe that to be the case. Even raw bones can cause broken teeth. And there’s divided opinions on deer antlers for dogs versus elk antlers for dogs, and other varieties. They are a bony outgrowth of the animal’s skull and are quite unique in that respect. And rather like the discussion on raw food, it’s one that even vets don’t always agree on. The general consensus is, “Better safe than sorry.”. Antler chews are also full of nutrients such as calcium. On top of that, we think that there are plenty of alternatives that will provide your dog with just as much pleasure. In fact, the most serious risk is what could happen inside your pet. from The USA. A. The dogs that appreciate chewing antlers the most are young dogs and dogs that just love to chew. Anecdotal evidence can be a tricky subject. But they will still likely chew on the rest of it, so it doesn’t take away the concern about broken teeth. One of the challenges of owning a puppy and raising it to become an adult dog is understanding what it can and cannot safely chew on. They are still very hard and present many of the same problems as other types of antlers. There are figures on the incidence of tooth fractures in dogs. Many dog owners get confused about natural materials. In other words, there’s possibly a strong chance that your dog might be able to chew on antlers on a number of occasions without suffering a tooth fracture. Find out if deer and elk antlers are safe chew treats for your dog. Assess the risks, and decide on your dog’s behalf. Khuly P. Complicated Dental Tooth Fractures. Are deer antlers safe for dogs? I’ve done some reading as well and other articles disagree with this claim.. mostly due to the fact that certain breeds of deer antlers are specifically bad for dogs as they split in small pieces that could harm their intestinal tract. Certainly, the chewing process helps to remove plaque and tartar. Including toys, bone, and antlers. There are also puzzle feeders that will help immensely to tire Fido out. Yes, antlers can hurt dogs. If your dog is an aggressive chewer, after that treatment, they won’t suffer tooth fracture or … After being shed, antlers are often picked up and gnawed by wild animals. Deer antlers can withstand incredible amounts of force (just look up male deer ramming into each other). You may have heard that cows’ horns are made from a substance called keratin, similar to your own nails and hair. Embrace Pet Insurance, Price J et al. I have been meaning to write an article on this topic for several years, as it’s one that comes up frequently in our forum. Vet Brett Beckham has produced a fact sheet for dog owners on avoiding tooth fractures. So that would suggest that such fractures are not an everyday occurrence. So are antlers safe for dogs? It’s also worth remembering that there are different types of antlers in the animal kingdom. But antlers are hard enough to withstand the force of another deer’s antlers in battle, which means they’re definitely hard enough to break your dog’s teeth. Reindeer antlers are also incredibly hard, and will still present much the same issues for dogs and their teeth as other types of antlers. Now here’s a SUPER popular dog chew! Your furry friend loves to chew on things around the house; unfortunately, your shoes were never intended to be your dog's personal chew toy. We also try to answer common questions about deer. A good general rule used by most vets is the “knee cap rule” – if you wouldn’t want to hit your knee cap with it, then it is too hard for your dog to chew on and risks tooth injury. Selecting chew toys that are softer or have some flexibility can help. Since awareness of this problem was first raised in the veterinary press in 2013, they state, there has been a “large increase in cases seen of fractured carnassial (and other) teeth by dogs chewing on antlers and other hard toys.”. But are all antlers created equal? Labrador Retriever Life Span – How Long Do Labs Live? Antlers come in many shapes and sizes. By safe, they mean that the product won’t cause the following: Each product has to pass two separate trials (carried out on different dogs) in order to pass. Are Antlers safe for dogs to chew? But, antlers for dogs can cause more problems than they solve. 99. Also, look at alternative toys or chews that may provide the same pleasure and tooth cleaning benefits, without being so hard on your dog’s teeth. Some antlers will be harder than others, while there are also different textures. But only a little. Chose from whole or split antlers in sizes small, medium, large, xl, xxl, xxxl and xxxxl. So what are the arguments against indulging your dog in this happy pursuit? The Veterinary Nurse 2017, Bellows, J. We do also need to consider that nutrients and taste are not the only reason dogs like antlers. You need to make a judgement call on behalf of your pet. While we assume animals are better suited to natural solutions, that is not always true. these are small deer antlers. You can read our toy reviews in this section of the website. the incidence of tooth fractures in dogs. Mercola Pet
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