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By Nan Talleno

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – My clients often ask me about rawhide for their dogs. They are usually skeptical and many have had incidents regarding excessive negative behavior surrounding their dogs when engaged in chewing.

My advice is almost always: find an alternative chew toy. Here are several reasons why.

First of all, not all rawhides are created equal, meaning that they can be processed, bleached, dyed, etc. which is very unhealthy for your dog. Dogs can be allergic and extremely sensitive, as this can also cause stomach upset. More importantly, rawhides can rip and tear causing serious choking hazards and possibly fatal intestinal blockages.

Rawhides are never recommended for quick eaters and voracious chewers, which many dogs are. But the rawhide itself tends to bring that quality out of many dogs anyway, unfortunately, in a sort of primal way, as well as any unnecessary negative behavioral issues such as growling, snarling or resource possession when in their grasp; sometimes even with dogs with no prior issue.

It just seems that with so many safe and healthier alternative chew bones and toys on the market, it’s unnecessary to expose your dog to even the possibility of a hidden danger.

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