Nasty Rawhides: Why are rawhides bad for dogs?

Are rawhides bad for dogs?

What are "rawhides"?

Rawhide chews are a popular treat for dogs, but the truth is that these seemingly harmless snacks can actually be very dangerous for our furry friends.

Unfortunately, the majority of rawhides are made with chemicals, bleaches and preservatives that can cause serious health problems for dogs if ingested.

In this blog post, we'll take a look at the potential risks associated with rawhide chews and explain why they're not a good choice for your pup. We'll also discuss some healthier alternatives that can provide your dog with the same enjoyment as a rawhide chew without the potential health dangers.

So if you're concerned about giving your dog rawhides, read on for the facts about why rotten rawhides are bad for your dog and what healthier, more natural alternatives you can give them instead.

 How are rawhides made?

is rawhides bad for dogs

Rawhide chews are surprisingly complex to make. The process begins with raw hide sourced from a variety of animals, such as cattle, horses, and sheep. The hide is separated into thin layers and then placed into a large vat of water and salt.

As the hides soak, enzymes are added to the mixture, which helps to break down the hide and make it more pliable. The hides are then cut into the desired shape and size, and then moulded into chews.

Finally, the rawhide chews are placed in an oven and cured for several hours. After the chews are cooled, they are packaged and ready to be sold and consumed by our furry friends in various and "fun" shapes, shapes, and flavourings.

It's useful to know that at Christmas, rawhides are bleached and dyed to give those festive colours which can be harmful for the health of our dogs.

Why are rawhides bad for dogs?

alternatives to rawhides

Rawhides have the potential to cause digestive issues and blockages in dogs due to their inability to break down in the digestive tract. Bits of rawhide can get stuck in the gut and build up until there’s a life threatening blockage, and sharp pieces can lacerate pup’s inside - not good!

When chewed, rawhides can also produce small pieces that can be a choking hazard, and splinters of the rawhide can even cause irritation and cuts to the mouth, throat, and gastrointestinal tract.

Even buying rawhides from a reputable shop or brand doesn’t mean they’re good, they're still made in the same way as any other brand.

Not only can rawhides be a threat to a dog's digestive system, but rawhides are often treated with harsh chemicals, such as bleach and formaldehyde, these chemicals can be ingested by the dog and cause irritation or even an allergic reactions.

Rawhides also have the potential to become a breeding ground for bacteria leading to more health troubles that every dog owner wants to avoid.

Dog owners should probably stay away from rawhide treats and chews, and here are some healthier alternatives to try instead.

 What are the alternatives to rawhides?

christmas rawhide treats for dogs

There are alternatives to rawhide treats. Don't be fooled by the fancy festive colours of the rawhides, because dogs can’t even see red and green colours that make them more appealing during the festive period.

Thankfully, there are plenty of other options out there for pup parents looking for a safe, healthy way to keep their furry friends entertained.

From edible chews and dental sticks to interactive toys and homemade treats, there’s something for every pup.

Edible chews come in a variety of flavours and textures, from beef jerky to bully sticks, and can provide hours of enjoyment for your pup. Dental sticks are also a great alternative, as they help clean your dog’s teeth and gums - pawfect!

Have a look at these safe fruit and vegetable food options for dogs by PDSA if you are looking for natural alternatives that your dog will equally love.

dog training treat bag

Why not try...

If you're looking for a convenient way to transport and keep your dog's rawhide-free treats and chews on walks and at home, try using our faff-free, large dog training treat bag! Now bigger than ever...





We hope that's been a "woof-ful" guide on rawhides, how they are made, and helping you source some healthier alternatives that your dog will equally love. We'll share some more woofs of wisdom, so stay tuned and don't forget to follow us on Instagram for more seriously good stuff.


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