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Is Rawhide Bad For Your Dog?

Let’s put it this way…rawhide is not good for dogs, especially those that come from commercial manufacturers. We'll take you through the top risks of rawhide such as contamination, digestive distress, ingredients, and tooth damage. The concerns are serious, so much so, that communities around the global are coming together to put a stop to the sale of commercial rawhide.

Consider these the next time you see rawhide in stores….

Reasons why rawhide is bad

(This sleepy fur-ball helped with the research last night)


#1: Rawhide Ingredients

Rawhide chews are made from the leather industry’s leftovers. Most hides are taken directly from the kill floors at slaughterhouses and placed into high-salt brines, which helps slow their decay. Most rawhide chews are manufactured in China, and it can take months before these brined hides actually make it to the tanneries for their final manufacture. Once the hide arrives at a tannery, it is soaked and treated with lime to help separate the fat from the skin, the hair is removed by chemical and physical efforts, and the hide is rinsed again. Unfortunately, the salt brines cannot prevent decay, no matter how long they delay it.

This is rather disgusting if you ask me....

#2: Digestibility

When dogs swallow rawhide the effects can be dangerous. Rawhide swells in stomachs and can swell up to 4x its original size! This swelling, combined with the inability to digest this material, can cause blockage and indigestion for pets. Symptoms of intestinal obstruction can include continuous vomiting, lack of eating, and severely decreased energy. Not to mention making it difficult for them to poop. Small dogs are especially at risk.

Let's also not forget about tooth damage. If the rawhide is too hard, your dog’s teeth can get fractured while chewing. Chewing rawhide treats is not great for your dog's dental health, especially if you have a teething puppy or an aggressive chewer.

#3: Contamination

Salmonella is a really big concern for rawhide. It’s not only a risk to your pets but can be a risk to you if you come in contact with the chew. In the US between 2008 and 2011, the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) held six MAJOR recalls of rawhide due to salmonella contamination and poisoning.

Specialists have said: “Not all rawhides are made or produced equally, with some having bacterial contamination. The most common bacteria seen on rawhides are Campylobacter and Salmonella.”


Better Safe Than Sorry

Don’t put your pup’s health (or life) at risk by giving your dog rawhide. There are safer ways to satisfy your dog’s chewing instincts, such as single-ingredient treats. If you think your dog is at-risk from eating rawhide or are not sure what chewy alternatives to give them, talk to your veterinarian.

Paw Life would like to work with you to help educate and promote responsible pet parenting.

Join our trusted community of pet lovers to guide each other and learn about pet care.




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