Rawhide treats are unfortunately still on our shelves all year round, but as another Christmas has passed, we continued to see more and more rawhide products on our shelves, luring in well-meaning humans wanting to spoil the fur baby in their life.
Maybe your Aunt Velda gave you a little red candy cane for your fur baby…maybe your little sister Emily got a new puppy and thinks a green Christmas tree shaped chew is the perfect Christmas present for it…it looks cute, it’s cheap, it’s accessible. But it is also the world’s deadliest chew toy!
Absolutely no judgement, we have given it to our dogs in the past before we knew the dangers. It’s everywhere on Australian shelves, we assume that it is safe…but unfortunately it is not, and we are trying our best to sing it from the rooftops and educate pet owners old and new about the dangers of these treats, and what you should be looking for instead.
This in turn should lead to rawhide being taken off our shelves and out of the mouths of our precious fur babies and put exactly where it belongs…IN THE BIN!
WHAT IS RAWHIDE? WHY IS IT SO BAD? Rawhide is made from the inner layer of animal hides, usually from cattle. The process involves cleaning the hides with nasty chemicals, removing hair and fat, and then treating them with more chemicals, plus a mixture of ash and lime to help with the removal of remaining tissue. This basically strips a natural product of anything and everything that’s good about it and turns it into a chemically treated choking hazard.
The choking risk arises because dogs may break off and swallow large pieces, or chew and swallow long stringy pieces of the rawhide leading to blockages in the digestive tract. It's crucial to supervise your dog while they chew on ANY treat. And to choose appropriate size and texture treats for their chewing style.
WHAT DO I GIVE MY DOG INSTEAD? There are SO many alternatives to rawhide treats for dogs made here in Australia using Australian products that are not only safe, but GOOD for your pets dental, and overall health and wellbeing.
Here are a few of our faves:
BULLY STICKS Ahh the humble bully stick…it still surprises us how many people don’t know what they are but have been giving them to their pets for years. A bully stick is made from a bull’s penis (no we are not joking). Bully sticks are 100% digestible and are a long-lasting chew. They are high in protein, low in fat, and they don’t stink (bonus)! We love being able to use leftover products from the human supply chain and using it to nourish our pets, all while putting some extra money in our farmer’s pockets and less waste into landfill.
ANTLERS Antlers are naturally shed from animals such as deer and goats and are packed full of healthy minerals such as calcium and phosphorous. They are long lasting, come in lots of different shapes and sizes, they don’t smell, and dogs love them!
GUMMY SHARK TAILS When people see the word ‘shark’ they sometimes assume we are talking about Great Whites and come at us with fistfuls of hate…what these are though are the discarded product from the local fish and chip shop! ‘Flake’ is actually gummy shark, and we take the tails that would otherwise end up in landfill and turn them into a very popular and long-lasting chew for your pet!
COW EARS WITH FUR You’ve seen pigs ears in pet shops for years, but these are usually stripped of their fur, and along with it a hell of a lot of nutrients. Cow ears are much bigger and therefore longer lasting, amazing for dental hygiene, 100% natural and untouched!
DEHYDRATED DUCK HEADS You’ve given your doggo the feet, but what about the heads!? Your pet will literally go quackers over these super crunchy treats. Packed full of protein, omega 3’s and vitamins, they are a great option for pets with allergies too!
CROCODILE TAILS & FEET DON’T PANIC! We are NOT flying far north and wresting crocs out of the water just to chop their feet and tails off and give to your dog…again, we take the leftovers from the human supply chain to ensure that the animal that has given it’s life for its meat and skin is not wasted, and every single piece of it is used to nourish our pets and not end up in landfill.
Many pets have severe allergies to common proteins leaving them restricted to novel proteins, and some are even on a crocodile only diet. These pets need treats and dental chews too! We are yet to meet a dog that hasn’t almost lost their tail from wagging it so hard once presented with one of these tasty, crunchy treats.
Laila and Me continue to say NO to cheap, nasty, imported treats like rawhide..and a big YAAAS to all natural, no waste, Aussie products.