FDA warns about dog 'bone treats' after reports of pets getting sick

Posted at 10:06 AM, Nov 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-28 10:06:50-05

The FDA is warning you to not to give your dog bone treats this holiday season.

Officials say they have received nearly 68 reports of pet illnesses related to bone treats. The treats are described as ham bones, rib bones, and smoke knuckle bones, but the FDA did not list any specific brands of dog treats in its warning. 

According to the FDA, the treats are a choking hazard and could cause vomiting, diarrhea, or rectal bleeding.

"Giving your dog a bone treat might lead to an unexpected trip to your veterinarian, a possible emergency surgery, or even death for your pet," said Carmela Stamper, a veterinarian in the Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) at the FDA, in a statement on the agency's website.

Officials say 15 dogs have died after eating a bone treat. 

FDA Tips to Keep Your Dog Safe 

Chicken bones and other bones from the kitchen table can cause injury when chewed by pets, too. So be careful to keep platters out of reach when you’re cooking or the family is eating.

Be careful what you put in the trash can. Dogs are notorious for helping themselves to the turkey carcass or steak bones disposed of there.

Talk with your veterinarian about other toys or treats that are most appropriate for your dog. There are many available products made with different materials for dogs to chew on.

“We recommend supervising your dog with any chew toy or treat, especially one she hasn’t had before,” adds Stamper. “And if she ‘just isn’t acting right,’ call your veterinarian right away!”

The WPTV web team contributed to this report.