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Discussion Starter #1
I bought my dog a big ham bone from the pet section of a store. He loved it, even when he wasn't chewing on it, he'd lay down right beside it.

I knew chicken bones were a problem for dogs, but I figured ham bones must be different, because they're sold in the pet section and packaged especially for dogs. Must not be dangerous, right?

Well, after my dog consumed a large portion of the bone, I checked on the Internet, and it turns out they can be very dangerous. He's doing alright so far, and some people have reported feeding their dogs bones for years and them being fine, so it's not necessarily an emergency. Hopefully he'll be fine.

But it does worry me. And it makes me angry that they can sell products like that that are known to be dangerous and potentially life threatening in the pet section packaged for dogs. I mean, what kind of country are we living in where that is legal? I guess this is what happens when people keep electing politicians who think regulation and consumer protection are dirty words (I don't want to get political, so I won't name names or parties).

I'm really steamed and worried. It sounds like the odds are the dog will probably be fine. He seems fine so far. But I'm still worried.

I can't believe they're allowed to sell this stuff with feeding it to dogs as it's intended purpose when it's known to be dangerous. It seems really wrong.

Obviously, I'll be sticking to synthetic bones that are designed to be dissolved and eventually swallowed from now on.
 

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Until I started visiting golden retriever forums, I didn't even know that cooked bones were bad for dogs. I thought raw bones were bad, and cooked were good, because when I was growing up we always saved our steak bones for the dog!
I guess the saying "let the buyer beware" applies here. There are all sorts of things that are sold that don't live up to their label so we need to be informed consumers.
 

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Anything sold can be dangerous in a specific circumstance. Dogs can choke on kibble, can break teeth on nylabones, can get a blockage from rawhide, tennis balls can wear down teeth, and on and on and on. The relative safety of a given product depends on the individual dog. I'm sure those bones would be fine for a smaller dog or a non-aggressive chewer, so if those owners want to purchase those products for their dogs, they will be available. It's up to an owner to do due diligence decide what is safe for their own dog.
 
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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
So what is the problem with giving your dog a ham bone
I did an Internet search and was reading all kinds of horror stories. Many involved intestinal blockages where a chunk of bone simply couldn't make it's way out the other end and surgery was required, or where shards of bone started cutting up dogs' insides like knives. There were a lot of tales of expensive emergency surgeries and dead dogs (some who even had the surgeries and then died). On the probably less severe side were some tales of broken teeth and such.

My dog seems to be doing just fine, though. He pooped several hours earlier than usual today, but I didn't see any blood in it or anything. Maybe a little greenish (Which happens occasionally anyhow). And he's his usual active self.

The Internet is great, but sometimes I think it's not always the best resource for someone who's anxious about something to begin with, because you always wind up reading the worst possible horror stories and it makes it seem like they're a very likely outcome. My guess is the vast majority of dogs who eat ham bones are fine, maybe a little indigestion, but those aren't the stories that come up when you search the Internet, of course. ;)

I do think I'm going to stick to synthetic bones from here on out, though, or maybe cow bones (Which are tougher to break apart and swallow). The ham bone thing doesn't seem worth the risk.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
He just vomited. Some bone fragments in there. But, as per usual, he was back to his usual active self within minutes.
 

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So what is the problem with giving your dog a ham bone (assuming its uncooked)?
Well, there's nothing wrong with raw pork bones in general (my dogs eat them all the time), but "ham" by definition has been smoked/cooked (plus usually a bunch of salt added).
 
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