Can Dogs Have Ham Bones? 7 Detail Explanations

As a generalization, dogs are depicted favorably across media when they are shown to be enjoying a bone. In many animated and animated feature films, dogs can be seen gnawing on a ham bone the size of their head or stealing bones from the Christmas dinner table.

There’s truth to the stereotype, as bone chewing is great for a dog’s teeth and stomach. Unfortunately, contrary to popular belief, ham bones are not necessarily safe for dogs.

Yes, giving your furry friend a piece of the bone from your celebratory meals can have dire consequences, including death.

Find out why and how to give your dog the benefits of bone chewing while minimizing the risks to their health in the following article.

Can Dogs Have Ham Bones?

Do not give your dog a ham bone. The health risks to your dog from consuming these scraps range from an upset stomach to organ damage.

Although it may seem harmless to let your dog gnaw on a whole bone, your dog’s teeth can easily splinter the bone into sharp pieces that can cause choking, damage the mouth, or even puncture internal organs if swallowed.

Ham bones, once cooked, are even more likely to shatter than they were before, making any leftover scraps from the dish particularly dangerous.

No bones about it, Christmas ham not good for dogs - ABC News

If you’re not going to keep an eye on your dog while they gnaw, don’t give them a bone. Never feed your dogtable human food without first discussing the idea with your vet.

Hazards of Feeding Your Dog Ham Bones

Eating ham bones can have negative effects on your dog, no matter what size or breed it is.

1.An obstruction of the intestines can be caused by splintered bones that become lodged in your dog’s digestive tract. This can lead to serious problems with blood flow and necessitate surgical intervention.

2.Dogs should not be given ham bones because they can splinter into small pieces and become a choking hazard if swallowed.

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3.Injury internally Sharp bone fragments can perforate your dog’s internal organs and gastrointestinal tract, leading to complications like internal bleeding. Moreover, they can cause your dog to suffer an abdominal puncture and the subsequent peritonitis, which, if bacterial, will require surgical intervention.

4.Eventually, your dog’s teeth will wear down from chewing on a real bone, which can have a negative effect on their oral health. Broken bone fragments can also cause pain and injury to your dog’s mouth.

5.Lethargy, diarrhea, and vomiting are just some of the side effects your dog may experience after consuming a ham bone due to its high fat content. They can get pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas) from eating too much ham.

What Happens if a Dog Eats a Ham Bone?

All members of the canine family, including wolves and domesticated dogs, share an impressive evolutionary trait: teeth that can easily break through bone.

Can Dogs Eat Ham Bones? What Are the Risks? - AZ Animals

Because of the shape of their incisors, they don’t have to worry about chewing around bones when they eat. The calcium in bones is great for strengthening the skeleton of a stray dog.

Ham bones, while substantial in size, are notoriously fragile. If your dog starts chewing on one, its wolf-like teeth will quickly shatter it into thousands of sharp pieces.

It’s possible that your dog has swallowed a few bone fragments without either of you noticing it. It is here that our difficulty originates.

Your dog chews on a bone without the meat that protects it from splinters when wolves eat their prey.

That makes intestinal perforation (tiny tears in the intestinal lining) caused by the fragments much more likely to occur in your dog.

These punctures can cause internal bleeding and consequent inflammation of the intestinal lining. Peritonitis describes this condition.

Larger pieces of bone can cause obstructions when they become lodged in the digestive system. There’s a risk that your dog won’t be able to breathe if a piece gets lodged in his windpipe.

What to Do if Your Dog Eats Ham Bones

In the event that your dog is a ham-bone eater, please refer to the following guidelines.

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1.Make an appointment with a vet. If you know or suspect that your dog has recently consumed a ham bone, you should contact your veterinarian immediately. Splintering a bone can result in serious injury, so extreme caution is warranted. If you take your pet to a vet, they can advise you on what to do next.

2.Keep an eye out for any unwanted reactions from your dog. Your dog may be able to pass the ham bone pieces with little to no trouble. However, if problems arise, you’ll need to talk to your vet about how your dog is feeling. Take your dog to the vet immediately if you notice any of these symptoms: diarrhea, dark stools, or vomiting.

3.Dole out some bread and pumpkin to them. Your dog can find some relief from the negative effects by eating certain foods. The indigestible bread will soften the blow of the bone fragments. They can ease their stomach pain and improve their digestion by eating pumpkin or another type of squash.

Is It Okay To Give My Dog A Bone? Which Bones Are Safe For Dogs? - DogTime

What Are Other Kinds of Bones That Are Not Safe for Dogs?

Any cooked bone, not just ham bones, can be dangerous for your dog. Overcooking destroys the collagen that gives a bone its structural integrity.

This makes it much simpler for your dog to shred it to bits with its teeth, which can lead to a number of problems.

Furthermore, cooking a bone destroys the nutrients your pet was hoping to absorb from it.

Also, never give a dog a bone that is too small to be chewed up completely. They risk suffocation if the bone slides down their windpipe and becomes lodged there.

It’s also possible that the bone will grow large enough to block passage to other organs. It’s for this reason that even under close supervision, you shouldn’t feed your dog bird bones.

Last but not least, keep your dog away from any naturally fragile bones. Splintering can occur with raw pork bones or the rib bones of other meats.

Like giving your dog a cooked bone, this could potentially cause health problems. And this includes any bones that have been broken.

What Kind of Bones Are Safe for Dogs?

There is some good news here; not all bones are bad for canines. Your canine companion does not necessarily need to be denied the treat of a bone. Your dog can enjoy the meat on certain bones.

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As a rule of thumb, raw bones are preferable to cooked ones. However, this risk still exists, and it varies according to the type of bone and the meat it came from. A raw bone retains its collagen, making it stronger and more flexible than a cooked one.

Thanks to this quality, the bone will not deteriorate as fast under your dog’s chewing. Also, your dog can benefit from the nutrients still present in these bones.

Which Bones is Your Dog Allowed to Eat?

It’s also important to provide your pet with substantial bones. If you don’t want your dog to try to swallow the bone whole, experts recommend getting one that’s about the same size as the dog’s head.

However, try not to go crazy. Chewing on a bone meant for a German shepherd could cause serious dental or jaw damage in a smaller dog.

Bones of cows and bison are typically larger and stronger than those of pigs and chickens. Since this is the case, you can trust them as reliable suppliers of raw bones for your dog.

Supervision is the single most important factor in keeping bone chewing safe. Despite taking great care to select the healthiest, most recently harvested, and optimally sized raw bone available, mistakes can and will be made.

If you’re sitting there with your dog, you’ve got a much better chance of spotting any breakage before it’s eaten. Check out our dog food guides for information on other nutritious and risk-free options.


A dog and his bone make an unbeatable team, it’s true. However, we must remember to keep an eye on our dogs as they partake. The safest course of action is to consult your veterinarian before giving your pet a bone.

A more rigid and well-fitted raw bone is the key to unlocking the nutritional and dental benefits of chewing on a bone while keeping vet bills low and nights worry-free. What’s more, pictures of your pet munching on a huge bone are extremely cute.

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