The best kind of chew toys for dogs help to look after canine teeth. Dog chew toys should help to reduce plaque, improve dental health, and keep your furry friend occupied. Safe chew toys for dogs shouldn’t have any risk of splintering or affecting the delicate enamel on your pet dog’s teeth.

There is actually a very good reason for giving your pet dog chew toys. A study published in the Journal of Veterinary Dentistry found that giving safe dental chew toys to dogs reduced plaque, bad breath, and gum disease. [1]

What are the best chew toys for dogs and are there any dangers in giving your dog bones to chew?

The dangers of dogs chewing on bones

Many dog owners assume that bones are the best type of chew toys for dogs. However, chewing on bones can create a number of health issues for your pet dog.

Here are a number of reasons why you shouldn’t give your dog bones to chew on:

  • Damage to teeth and gums. Bones can splinter and the sharp edges can damage your dog’s tongue or gums. Also, bones are hard enough to fracture canine teeth. This usually result in requiring expensive dental work.
  • Internal damage. Pieces of chipped bone can become lodged in your pet’s esophagus or cause damage in the intestines. In worst case scenarios, surgery is needed to repair damage to the gastrointestinal tract or dislodge bones.

The best chew toys for dogs

What are the best types of chew toys to keep your pet dog occupied and their teeth clean?

Here are a few doggie chews that most vets recommend:

  • Edible chews. There are a number of specially-designed dog chews that help care for your dog’s dental and oral health.
  • Rubber dog chews. Good-quality dog chews made from rubber are designed to be long lasting without damaging your dog’s teeth. Some rubber chews are also filled with dog kibble to keep your furry friend occupied for longer.
  • Bully sticks. These are doggie treats made from beef that your pet dog will love chewing on. You can buy these dog chews in various sizes depending on the type and breed of your dog. They will not only help clean canine teeth, but they will also give your pet plenty of protein.

Looking after your dog’s dental health

Giving your dog chew toys is a great way to keep his or her teeth clean and free from plaque-causing bacteria. However, you shouldn’t forget to arrange for a regular checkup at your local vets to check for signs of loose teeth or gum disease.

Source: J Vet Dent. 2013 Summer;30(2):84-7.