Someone has been searching the internet for the answer to the question "Can dogs eat hambones?" More than once my site has been hit by someone apparently in a quandary as to whether giving the soupbone to the dog is a good idea. Because it could cost them the life of their hound, I must address this.
COOKED BONES CAN KILL YOUR DOG. NEVER, EVER GIVE A COOKED BONE TO A DOG. THIS INCLUDES THOSE BONES SOLD IN STORES THAT ARE "STERILIZED." Ironically enough, those bones sold in stores as "sterilized" are generally crawling with bacteria, too. And they are brittle.
Raw bones are safer, but still not completely safe. Large bones from sheep and cows are generally less safe, even given raw, as they are the most dense, and hardest. Safest: raw or frozen chicken thighs, wings, backs, etc, and rib bones from sheep and cows are just fine. You want the soft bones, not the hard bones.
I know many of you have probably given your dogs cooked bones and they didn't have a problem. But just as many people have given cooked bones and had a dog die of a ruptured intestine later. Sometimes your dog dies and you don't know why. Could be that cooked bone you gave him.
Cooked bones are brittle and splinter. Dogs don't know any better and will eat them, but can suffer a perforated intestine from them. It's extremely painful. Cooked chicken bones and pork bones are especially bad.
Sofia just finished off a frozen chicken thigh. She's a happy girl. She is a chewer, not a gulper. If you have a dog who is a gulper, even a raw bone should be removed if it gets small. A digestive system blockage is an awful thing. If your dog is a gulper, I would never give him or her a bone, raw or not. It's just too scary.
Some dogs just should not have bones, period, not in any shape or form. Check this:
http://www.petmd.com/dog/nutrition/evr_dg_raw_bones_or_cooked_bones> This is a veterinarian's site and I find his arguments persuasive. There are X-rays of dogs with obstructions caused by bones.
Signs that your dog is in trouble:
(your dog might show only some of these signs, not all)
Trying to throw up but can't.
Pale gums (a sign of internal bleeding--get to the vet or emergency vet NOW!)
I do not believe in feeding a completely raw diet. Sofia is supplemented with raw, but she eats Fromm Family Salmon, a premium dog food.
I am not a veterinarian. It is safe for Sofia to have some bones because she doesn't gulp, she gnaws. There are lots of people who will say ANY raw bone is safe, and I do not believe that to be the case. Use your best judgment in regards to raw bones.
One thing everyone agrees on, though:
NEVER GIVE YOUR DOG (OR CAT!) A COOKED BONE OF ANY KIND