Anyone use dental chews for their dogs? If so, is there one brand that is better than the others. I have my two dogs on Milk Bone Dental Chews (1 small one every night) and they seem to like them. It seems to keep their teeth in good shape. I read one article where someone’s dog had a digestive problem with this product and they wanted to make everyone boycott this product. Have not heard about this from any other source.
Hound Dog MomParticipant
Hi Louis –
It’s great that you’re being proactive about your dog’s dental health! 🙂
Unfortunately, the Milk Bone brand dental chews contain very unhealthy ingredients (kind of the canine equivalent of a candy bar for us humans!). The good news is there are a lot of healthy chews available that I’m sure your dog will love just as much.
My number one recommendation for a healthy and effective dental chew is raw meaty bones. My dogs are fed an entirely raw diet and their dinner every night consists of raw meaty bones, but raw meaty bones can be fed to dogs that don’t eat raw as well. The best options for small dogs are things like chicken necks, wings and feet. Larger dogs do well with items like chicken backs, chicken quarters, pork necks and turkey necks.
If you’re not comfortable with feeding raw (which is completely understandable, many aren’t) the next best option would be a natural chew – things like bully sticks, dried trachea, pig ears, etc. These treats are high in protein and low in carbohydrates making them species-appropriate and healthy – plus dogs go nuts for them! Just be sure to get these types of treats from a reputable supplier (avoid treats imported from China!). A great site to order chews from is BestBullySticks.com – they have a wide selection and their chews are sourced from free-range Brazilian cattle.
While I do feel that RMBs and natural chews are a much better option than commercial dental treats, if you do choose to go with a commercial dental treat there are some things to look out for. The vast majority of commercial dental treats are loaded with unhealthy ingredients (like the Milk Bone dental chews) but there are a few out there that aren’t so bad. You just have to be sure to always read the ingredient list – avoid items like propylene glycol, artificial colorings, corn, wheat, soy, by-products, digests, etc. The downside to commercial dental chews is that, for the most part, they’re all fairly carb-heavy (even the healthier options) and they’re typically very expensive (RMBs are cheap!). A few commercial dental chews that I would feel comfortable recommending: Zuke’s Z-Bones, Cloud Star Dynamo Dog Dental Bones, Halo Spot’s Chew, Get Naked Dental Chew Sticks, Newman’s Own Organics Dental Bones and Nature’s Recipe Pure Essentials Dental Chews.
Also, be sure that you’re brushing your dogs teeth regularly (at least three times per week) – while dental chews are certainly a valuable tool for dental health, the only way to ensure optimal dental health is through brushing.
I agree with everything HDM said, just wanted to add that my favorite dental chew (i use RMBs as well) is a brand called Whimzees, they are available at most specialty pet stores, and I have them at my farm supply store here as well
I also feed Whimzees and love THK Beams fishskin chews.
Has an anyone used Ark Natural’s Brush-less toothpaste chews? http://www.chewy.com/dog/ark-naturals-breath-less-brushless/dp/45737
Or Natural Balance L.I.T dental chews? http://www.chewy.com/dog/natural-balance-lit-dental-chews/dp/101751
- This reply was modified 4 years, 9 months ago by Dog_Obsessed.
I’ve used Ark Naturals chews and I like them alot. I like Ark Naturals in general. I believe I do have a bag of the NB chews, unless I gave them away. I haven’t tried them, yet, because I just don’t trust Natural Balance anymore.
Thanks for the input! Is the reason you don’t trust NB because of the recalls, or because some of their formulas are really carb heavy?
They were purchased by Del Monte, and some of their formulas have changed (the one I know of off hand is the rolls of food-they added some sugar and such)
Okay, thanks. I did notice the disappointing change in the rolls.
My 13 yr old Mini Schnauzer has been blessed with great teeth all her life. She used to go through those really hard Nylabones like mad when she was younger. Apparently with no adverse effects on her digestive tract.
Now she doesn’t seem to have any chewing interest. I’ve tried different toys and bones. Then I got her some of the Milk Bone Dental sticks. Good God, within a day or two she was letting loose with the most rancid farts I’ve ever smelled. I’m sure it was them because I never smelled her farts before and yes I’m aware that at least humans and dogs fart.
In fact, right now I am on the far side of my MBR and she’s on the bed. I just got another blast. At least it’s still cool at night and I can air the place out. She’s looking at me like, “Are you talking to me?”
I will be ceasing these tomorrow. I had her at the vet on Friday and Schatzie let one fly. We were in a relatively small exam room and thankfully I was her last client of the day.
I might some of the ones mentioned above or just let her be. Her teeth are still perfect. I just thought it would be fun for her.
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