What are they: as the name suggest from the rib section of an animal. They do not have to be weight bearing and so are not as hard or dense as marrowbones can be. They have a harder outside and much softer chewy middle section.
Beef Ribs and Lamb Ribs are popular, Pork Ribs are becoming more fed too, losing the judgements on pork as being a ‘dirtier’ or ‘unhealthier’, type of meat to feed a dog.
Always Fed them Raw – they will be found in the freezer dept of your pet store. Never feed the cooked, fat dipped versions of any bones!!! Not only is the fat too rich for most dogs but also the fatty edges are sharp. The bones themselves are dry and very brittle they can easily crack and cause sharp edges too. These types of bones are giving the feeding of nutritious healthy raw bones a bad name.
When to feed them: As highly nutritious leisure time bones that encourage gnawing and tooth cleaning. Gnawing is your dogs natural Toothbrush!
Which dogs are best to avoid them:
Puppies whose teeth may not be strong enough yet to cope with them, some breeders do present these to puppies with a fair amount of meaty bits still attached. If watched carefully throughout the process puppies will enjoy ripping the meaty sections from these raw bones. The remaining harder section can simply be removed when they get down that far if need be.
Dogs not on a raw diet. For many dogs on a kibble or processed food diet digesting raw bone is more difficult. The top theory behind this is that such a dogs stomach acid is not as strong as it should be, as it doesn’t need to reach low Ph levels to digest the processed food. A less strong acid stomach would find a harder dense bone such as a marrowbone hard to breakdown and digest.
Why are they so Pawsome:
As part of the ideal raw diet your dog would be enjoying smaller bones as part of his meals. Often gulping, most naturally, a whole chicken wing straight down, or fairly quickly chewing at, and then swallowing, softer raw meaty bones such as a duck neck or turkey neck. Depending on the size of your dog of course.
Although I have even known Chihuahua’s that swallow their chicken wings in one!
Beef Ribs are encourage gnawing and so can be the ultimate antidote to this. They are bones that make fantastic tooth cleaning, leisure bones.
>They have a soft chewy inside, perfect for releasing flavour as your dogs chews away at the raw bone.
>The consistent gnawing action will be fantastic at helping to keep your dogs teeth clean and sparkly.
>The action of chewing also release heaps of endorphins, which are known to calm a dog and help anxiety related behaviours.
>Chewing and Gnawing on a raw meaty bone is The most natural thing your dog can do. Deep respect to those who allow their dogs to enjoy such dog-like behaviours.
> Your dog will be kept happily occupied for a while, giving you a great opportunity to enjoy some peace and quite!
> Extra nutrition and bone content will be provided, helping firm up stools, especially useful for dogs on low or no bone content minces like tripe or beef.
> Some bigger dog breeds may even enjoy these as part of the diet itself.
Small sections of them
Occasionally your dog will reach the end of the bone and try to swallow the last section, for some dogs this will be a safe thing to do – they can digest even that hard bone if their stomach acid is strong, but on some occasions the bone may be gnawed down or crunched up into an unfortunate tiny sections, all I do in this case is pick up the little bits I am worried and throw it away.
This crunching of them doesn’t often happen with raw rib bones though, mostly they stay chewing them or simply gulp the last section down.
You will discover what your dog does as you get used to feeding them. He is either going to be a cruncher or a chewer! Either is safe to do though, just keep an eye on the as you would any toy you give them.
Where they leave them in the house! Your dog may not finish the bone in one sitting. That’s fine. I tend to rinse my dog’s marrowbone under the hot tap and stick it in a lidded tub in the fridge for giving back to them another day. Just be sure to bring the bone up to room temperature before you give it back again.
I only keep them in the fridge a couple of days as they tend to get eaten by then, you may choose to do so for longer, treat them as you would you own food/meats.
Properly defrosting them. I do know people who feed these bones frozen. This would have to be your choice depending on your knowledge of your dogs tooth health.
It could be a wonderful treat in the summer, but as these bones are harder than most bones already to leave them frozen would be feeding them in a much harder state than most raw meaty bones would ever be fed.
Getting them from a reliable source: As with all raw pet foods choose a Defra registered supplier wherever possible. Buy them from the freezer of a pet store (or supermarket). Freebies from a trusted butcher could be ok, so long as the butcher has kept them in a safe environment prior to giving them to you. Left out the back in sun is not a particularly safe environment.
Minerals such as Calcium, Magnesium, Boron, Phosphorus, Zinc
Vitamins A, D, E, K
Essential Fatty Acids
Enzymes including Marrow stem cell nutrients
The ol’ Calcium/Phosphorus query: You are feeding bone to grow and strengthen bone – it has already achieved its balanced created state and so provides the same nutrition to your dog when broken down into their own bodies.
Minerals not only provide strength to nails, hair, teeth, and bone but importantly also play a role in Kidney health. Quality unprocessed minerals are vital for your dog’s health.
Watch this great video on feeding raw meaty beef ribs to your dogs by vet Vicky Payne!