If there is one thing I’ve learned about our dogs, it’s you have to keep them busy or they will find something to chew up. We have tried many products and spent a considerable amount of money on chew toys for our 2 black labs. We started off with raw hides, which they loved. The problem was that they would devour them in 15 minutes and have diarrhea for 2 days. Then we tried the hard, pressed rawhide chew toys which are supposed to last longer. They did last a little longer than the traditional rawhide chews, but not by much. They must be easier to digest because they didn’t experience diarrhea.  We also tried the smoked bones from the pet shop. I didn't like these at all.  The marrow falls out and they are finished with a $6 bone in 2 hours.

Looking for other alternatives, we purchased a Kong toy. They claim these are pretty much indestructible. This worked great for fetch.  Later I stuffed it with peanut butter and it kept them busy for hours. Around this time my neighbor recommended that I buy beef bones from the local grocery store. They have a small meat market that offers custom cut meat. I found frozen beef bones that they sell for dogs and they cost about 75% less than the smoked bones at the pet store. They chewed on them for about a week before they were cleaned out. These worked great!  We only let them have them when they are supervised. All real bones have a risk of splintering.

Real bones will keep your dog busy without the cost of pet store chews. This will significantly reduce the number of stuffed animals you will need to replace.

Tips for Real Bones:

  • Only give uncooked beef bones to dogs
  • Give them bones on a hard, cleanable surface.
  • Your local butcher may give them to you at no charge if you are a regular customer.
  • Never give a dog a cooked bone. They will easily splinter.