Your heart melts as soon as you look into those big brown eyes and cute doggie grin.
So you gifted your dog a Rawhide bone for stronger jaws, clean teeth, and fresh breath. But soon it went missing and you noticed your dog looks a bit sick.
Your dog probably swallowed it and you want to know how Long Does Rawhide Take to Digest in Dog?
So let me tell you, rawhide takes a month or so to completely digest in your dog’s body. If not digested it can cause severe health issues and your dog will need some help.
To help you understand it in a better way, we have for you all the needed information about what to do if your dog ate rawhide bone.
- Can Dog Digest Rawhide?
- How to Know if your Dog Swallowed Rawhide?
- Where is Rawhide Actually Stuck?
- Risks of Swallowing Rawhide
- What is Rawhide?
- FAQs About Rawhide Chews for Dogs
Can Dog Digest Rawhide?
The straight answer to this is NO, your dog cannot completely digest Rawhide.
It is not made using edible compounds and so it is not possible for dogs to digest rawhide completely whether it is a puppy or an adult.
If your dog swallowed a small chunk of rawhide, it will be passed out of the body easily through excretion within a few days or even a month later.
But if your dog swallowed too much rawhide it can get stuck in the digestive system and can lead to indigestion, blockage, or choking. As per akc “rawhides are not easily digested, which is why large chunks broken off and swallowed pose such high obstruction risks.“
Before you get into any deeper negative thoughts, it is advisable to be assured if your dog really swallowed rawhide or it’s just lost somewhere around the house.
How to Know if your Dog Swallowed Rawhide?
If your dog really swallowed rawhide bone, you will notice some behavioral changes and that would help you understand the situation better before you consider visiting a vet.
- Lazy: If you see your dog is lazy than he ever was, there are chances he swallowed rawhide.
- Driveling: If you notice the constant flow of saliva out from the mouth, your dog likely has indigestion caused due to swallowed rawhide or is trying to bring it out.
- Vomiting: Dogs don’t have vomiting frequently unless and until they suffer from indigestion, and swallowing Rawhide could be one of the reasons.
- Food aversion: This is quite common in dogs once they eat something that they should not, so could be swallowing Rawhide.
- Stomach ache: Dogs don’t speak, but as a dog parent you know when a dog is standing in a praying position, is breathing heavily, and has a swollen abdomen, he is having abdominal pain.
These are a few changes you will notice in your dog if he swallowed large chunks of Rawhide bone. Rawhide bone might get stuck somewhere.
The risk of swallowing rawhide is at an alarming level for your dog. And so it is essential to have accurate knowledge about it before you predict something or start worrying.
Where is Rawhide Actually Stuck?
If rawhide bone is not digested it can last up to a month in a dog’s body. This can lead to digestion and gastrointestinal issues.
Smaller pieces of rawhide bone are pushed out of the body through excretion.
While the larger ones can get stuck somewhere in the body creating esophageal or abdominal difficulty.
It may differ from dog to dog and the amount of rawhide swallowed.
Rawhide usually is stuck in the trachea initially, the esophagus, stomach, or intestine. Let us know about it all in detail.
If rawhide is stuck in the trachea your dog will be distress, lazy, and even choking or drooling.
He can also try to remove the pieces with his paw. If you see this, it is advisable to take medical help immediately as this might lead to breathing issues.
If chunks of rawhide are stuck in esophagus you will see him driveling and vomiting.
It is not normal and can even cause Cushing’s Disease.
Stomach and Intestine
Your dog might have a stomachache if he isn’t eating properly, yelps or growls when picked or even touched, and stands in a praying position. This could be because of rawhide.
Your dogie will frequently press his stomach to remove it. This will cause him pain and irritation.
Risks of Swallowing Rawhide
Compared to the amount of rawhide swallowed by your dog, there are certain risks. According to ruffstartrescue “Rawhide is highly indigestible and can wreak havoc on a dog’s digestive system. The most fatal risk of consuming rawhide is an intestinal blockage.“
Now that you know where can a large chunk of rawhide get stuck, understanding its risks will be easier.
As mentioned earlier, if rawhide bones get stuck in trachea it can lead to breathing difficulty and chocking.
Depending on the size of rawhide swallowed by your dog the risk may vary.
If you see your dog choking, you should immediately consult your vet as they may treat it properly.
The most common risk of swallowing a rawhide is having digestive pain, irritation, or allergy.
Rawhide bones have certain types of chemicals in them that can cause severe allergies.
Allergies can disturb a dog’s digestion process. You would be surprised to know, swallowing rawhide causes diarrhea in dogs.
If the large chunk of rawhide bone passes through the trachea it can get stuck in the esophagus or other parts of the digestive tract.
This can cause a blockage. Rawhide blockage can lead to loss of appetite, stomach ache, constant vomiting, or dizziness.
Under such conditions, your dog needs to be immediately taken to the vet. They can remove the rawhide through operation if necessary.
What to do if Your Dog Swallowed Rawhide Bone?
First things first, do not panic. You should handle the situation calmly and your pet friend will be completely okay.
So here’s what you can do to help your furry friend.
Don’t leave your dog alone as you are not sure if he swallowed small chunk or a large piece of rawhide.
If it is a tiny piece it will be easily excreted out of its system. But if not he might choke and so avoid leaving your dog alone.
Also, keep a check on his feces, and bathroom schedules as the rawhide can excrete out through the stool.
Visit your vet if the rawhide isn’t removed by either stool or vomiting even after a month.
Also, if the dog seems dehydrated do not consider it normal. Seek medical help immediately.
You can also feed small amount of honey ( not sugar-free ) if your dog is constantly coughing. Honey will soothe his irritated throat likly caused by chuncks of rawhide bone.
You can also feed him breed and water if you think rawhide bone is stuck in his throat. This way it will make gulping tiny particles much easier. If it still persists consult a vet.
Hope by now you know how long does a rawhide take to digest. Also his symptoms, dangers aand care you should take.
To avoid all this it is always better to know what is rawhide and why is it so dangerous for your pooch.
To help you understand that, here’s some information you should have as a pet parent if you are planning to get a dog, or rawhide for your dog.
What is Rawhide?
The rawhide chews for dog treats are made from animal’s hide probably a cow, horse, buffalo, or even a deer.
First they clan the hide and cut it into pieces. Then it is pressed in chewable dog treats of different shapes and sizes.
These chews are then given to the dog. It keeps them equipped and also makes their teeth stronger and clean. Flavors and colors are added to rawhide bones to make them more appealing.
Rawhide chews contain some amount of toxic chemicals for the necessary texture.
But these chemicals lead to salmonella or E.coli contamination and above mentioned health issues.
This makes us think if rawhide is safe for your pet friend or you should really avoid it.
Firstly, it is good for your dog’s teeth and jaws. Rawhide bones whiten the teeth and strengthen the jaw. It also helps your dog or puppies relieve anxiety. But there are some drawbacks like allergies, digestion issues, etc.
So before buying a rawhide bone for your dog, ask your vet if your dog needs a rawhide. There are also certain rawhide alternatives you can invest in.
Healthy Alternative to Rawhide Chews for your Dog
If you want to save your dog from getting into any kind of trouble caused by Rawhide bones, here we have listed some healthy alternatives often recommended by vets for dogs.
- Sweet Potato Chews
- Bully Sticks
- Frozen carrots
- Raw Bones
- Fish Skin
- Himalayan Chews
- Venison Chews
- Eldon’s Tendons
- Hero Chicken feet
- Icelandic+ Lamb Horn
Yes, some of them are easily available in your nearest pet shops. And some of them will demand your time and a bit of research.
But we are sure as a pet parent you do not want anything that can put your dog in trouble.
FAQs About Rawhide Chews for Dogs
What is better than rawhide for dogs?
Bully sticks and sweet potato chews are amazing alternatives to rawhide bones. Bully sticks are made from grass-fed, free-range beef. They are quite easily digestible compared to rawhide bones.
How many rawhides can a dog have in a week?
The amount of rawhide a dog can have in a week largely depends upon its weight, breed, and age. It also depends upon your dog’s daily activity. So it is always advisable to consult a vet or seek the help of a pet shop owner for the same.
Can rawhide cause diarrhea in dogs?
Yes, rawhide contains some amount of toxic chemicals and when swallowed by dogs it can cause diarrhea and other digestion issues.
How long does it take for a dog to digest rawhide?
Dogs cannot completely digest rawhide. If the rawhide pieces are tiny it is excreted out of the body, if not can cause a blockage. If you notice your dog coughing, vomiting, or having a stomach ache after it swallowed rawhide make sure to visit the dog specialist.
Now that you know how long does rawhide takes to digest in a dog, you probably want to avoid giving it to your dog despite its benefits. And so we hope the alternatives we mentioned above were helpful for you. They are less harmful than rawhide bones.
But make sure if your dog has swallowed rawhide is not behaving normally consider visiting a dog specialist. Because your cute little friend might just be in pain.
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Julia is a Board Certified Veterinary Nutritionist, practicing veterinarian in a non-profit animal hospital and feline sanctuary located in Rochester, NY. She is also a full-time veterinary advisor at DogLikesBest. She focuses on writing healthcare-related topics including dog foods, treats, veterinary diets, food for specific healthcare features, etc. Moreover, any article on DogNeedsBest that has to concern feline health in any way, goes under her scrutiny before being published.