Help! My Dog Ate Chicken Bones

Most people know that chicken bones are bad news for dogs. Cooked bones are especially bad. They have a tendency to splinter into lots of little sharp pieces which can cause havoc when swallowed. If bones don’t break down they can cause bowel obstructions which could need surgery to remove.

It goes without saying that you should never give your dog chicken bones to swallow or chew, but what should you do if your dog manages to eat a chicken bone anyway?

I have had two instances where Bruce has managed to get chicken bones – both on walks in London, near fried chicken takeaways where thoughtless customers have dumped the remains of their dinner in the street. So, I know the emergency procedure. Here’s what to do if your dog ate chicken bones.

1. Get home straight away. If you’re out and about on a walk you need to stop vigorous activity and get your dog home to relax. Minimise movement and get your pup to rest as much as possible.

2. Provide a cushion for the bones. Give your dog something soft and squishy to eat. This will provide a cushion around the bones and any splinters and prevent them from scratching or cutting his insides. Bread is perfect – give him a lot of it, don’t be shy. When you give your dog his next meal, add in some cooked white rice, and spend the next day or two giving him more food than usual to help pack out his stomach and intestines.

3. Monitor your dog closely. If you had plans today it’s time to cancel them. Be on the look out for signs of pain or discomfort, blood in the stools, straining and struggling to go to toilet, and changes in behaviour such as fatigue, unusual whining, a bad mood or even aggression. If any symptoms appear, it’s time to visit the vet immediately.

Follow these steps and there’s a good chance that your dog will be OK after eating chicken bones. Prevention is better than cure, so in the future try not to let him get near bones – keep them away from reaching distance, and don’t put your dog in the path of temptation by leaving tasty bones on countertops or tables.

Has your dog ever eaten chicken bones?

About me

Joy Jewell is a London based dog obsessive and style connoisseur. Joy has worked in the fashion and beauty industry as a writer for nearly a decade, and decided to fuse her two loves – style and canines – to create Paws and Prada in 2014. If you would like to talk to Joy about anything from blogging to puppy training then drop her a line at [email protected] or find her on Twitter @PawsandPrada.


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Reply February 18, 2015

This is awesome advice! I remember once when we had chicken for dinner and I put the bones in garbage. I didn't think too much about it because my dog was never interested in garbage (in fact in the past ten years she has only eaten food off the ground 3 or 4 times). Well, this was the 1st and last time my dog ever got into the garbage but suddenly, in the middle of the night, I was awakened to the sound of crunching. She had happily brought the bones into the bedroom to share.... She was extremely confused when I took them away. Luckily nothing happened but we all learned a good lesson!

    Reply February 19, 2015

    How kind of her to share! I bet you were pleased ;)

    We have to have a lockable bin to stop Bruce getting into it, or he'd be having a midnight snack every night!

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