Rawhide or no-hide?

by Meagan Sherrill

I have researched endlessly regarding rawhide bones, but I’m hoping you can shed some light on the topic.

To me, it seems like the cons outweigh the pros. What do you think?

I looked through your page, but didn’t see anything on the topic. If you agree with me that there are better alternatives, do you have any suggestions?

Thanks so much!

Hi Meagan. In my opinion the only type of rawhide toys/bones that are okay to give to a dog are the compressed ones.

These are produced by compressing several layers of rawhide together and much tougher than the toys/bones made from flat sheets of rawhide because the process produces a very dense, hard chew.

However, even with compressed rawhide I would never suggest letting any dog play with them unsupervised. Especially big strong power chewers (this includes Rotties). I’d recommend the largest compressed rawhide bone you can find, and if it ever becomes soft enough for the dog to chew pieces off it, then the whole thing goes in the trash!

If you want to avoid rawhide altogether, and I wouldn’t blame you, then there are other natural alternatives that can work. The only ones that are fairly indestructible are natural antlers. These have the attraction of being flavored by nature, and are extremely durable. Again, you need a BIG antler for a big dog 🙂

Other than that Himalayan dog chews (basically a form of extremely hard cheese made from yaks/cows milk and dried) are tasty but don’t last extremely long. Bully sticks are also a good choice, they can be a bit smelly and again aren’t as long-lasting as antlers or even rawhide sometimes, but dogs love them.

If you’re looking for ideas for sturdy chew toys which are not of the edible/natural variety this page may help… Tough Dog Toys

Hope this helps. Best of luck. ~ Sue

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About The Rotty lover 2159 Articles
My name is Dr. Winnie. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Duke University, a Masters of Science in Biology from St Georges University, and graduated from the University of Pretoria Veterinary School in South Africa. I have been an animal lover and owners all my life having owned a Rottweiler named Duke, a Pekingese named Athena and now a Bull Mastiff named George, also known as big G! I'm also an amateur equestrian and love working with horses. I'm a full-time Veterinarian in South Africa specializing in internal medicine for large breed dogs. I enjoy spending time with my husband, 2 kids and Big G in my free time. Author and Contribturor at SeniorTailWaggers, A Love of Rottweilers, DogsCatsPets and TheDogsBone