FEEDING RAW bones AND MEATY CHEWS
Why should you feed raw bones?
- Bones are a fantastic source of nutrition. They contain glucosamine, calcium and phosphorus, and many are rich in omega 3 fats, too.
- Benefits can include improved skin health, improved joint health and firmer stools. In addition to this, chewing can be an immensely satisfying and relaxing experience for raw fed dogs. Raw bones also make a fantastic natural tooth brush!
- A wide variety of our raw foods contain minced bone, with the exception of beef mince and tripe.
- We recommend that you offer a raw meaty bone or chew 1-3 times a week to help keep your pet’s teeth clean, as well as providing an enjoyable, relaxing and healthy treat.
- If you have just switched to raw, please wait 3-4 weeks before introducing raw bones to your pet's diet
The table below gives a guide to the age and experience level at which to introduce each of the raw bones we produce, as recommended by our in-house vets.
|Raw Bone||Description||Recommended Age||Extra Info|
|Turkey Necks||Soft, whole bone||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|Duck Wings||Soft, whole bone||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|Duck Necks||Soft, whole bone||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|Chicken Wings||Soft, whole bone||From 10 weeks||Great for pups, cats and new starters|
|Chicken Portions||Soft, whole bone||From 6 months||Great for new starters|
|Chicken Carcass||Soft bone||From 6 months||Great for new starters|
|Lamb Necks||Tough, meaty whole bone||From 10 months||Great for new starters|
|Marrowbone||Extremely tough, whole bone containing marrow||From 10 montths||For experienced chewers.|
|Beef knuckle bone||Extremely tough, whole bone||From 10 months||For experienced chewers. Care with tough chewers.|
|Beef Ribs||Whole, tough bone||From 10 Months||Care with inexperienced chewers|
What about bacteria?
Natures Menu bones and chews are safely sourced and stored to ensure it is safe for raw consumption. Our batches are regularly tested for bacteria such as salmonella and enterobacteriaceae. We keep our bones and chews frozen to ensure safe, fresh products. We recommend to defrost the bones and chews in a sealed container on the side for 2 hours or overnight in the fridge. We advise to use the product within 24 hours of defrosting.
Is it safe to feed bones?
Only if they are fed raw and selected appropriately for the age and experience of the animal. Raw bones are moisture rich, softer and more flexible compared to cooked bones. Once a bone is cooked they become very dry and brittle, this is when they can easily splinter and potentially cause problems. Please do not feed cooked bones.
A few pointers before you start....
- Never cut or saw bones
- For older dogs, stick to the softer bones
- Never feed bones with small children in reaching distance
- Never leave a dog unattended with a bone
- Never feed a dog cooked bones
- If you have more than one dog, separate them before feeding bones as they may are a high value item and may cause fights.
- Always feed bones appropriate to their age, breed, experience and size
- If storing after a chewing session, rinse the bone under cold water and store in a plastic bag or container in the fridge.
- Always dispose of any uneaten material after 24 hours
- With cats, always keep an eye on where they take their bones, as they have a tendency to hide them away!
If you would like to give your dog a natural chew but do not want to give bone we also have a range of meaty chews including Beef Trachea, Paddywacks and Meaty Beef Chews, detailed in the table below. These are particularly good for puppies as they are softer than bone but offer all the satisfaction of a good chew session - great for teething gums.
Alternatively, you can view the whole range of natural snacks, treats, bones and chews here, as well as buy online.
|Chew||Description||Recommended Age||Extra Info|
|Meaty Beef Chews||Cartilage Chew||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|Paddywacks||Tendon Chew||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|Beef Trachea||Cartilge Chew||From 10 weeks||Great for pups and new starters|
|organ meat||Description||Recommended Age||Extra Info|
|Lamb Heart||Muscle Chew||10 weeks+, cut into small portions.||Very chewy muscle meat|
|Beef Heart||Muscle Chew||From 10 weeks||Rich chew - feed in small portions 1-2 times a week.|