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That's a pretty broad statement there, ccoryjohnn, and largely incorrect. The bones are not the danger to animals, it's our human tendency to mess with nature that poses the danger. -Raw- bones are perfectly fine for carnivorous animals, including cats, dogs, and ferrets. -Cooked- chicken bones are not safe, because the cooking causes the bones to splinter when chewed. That's why you never see a lion roasting a bird over a campfire. ;)

· Registered
199 Posts
Was it raw or cooked chicken bones? There's a VERY important difference between the two.

I've been feeding raw chickens to my cats and dogs for years and never had a blockage or problem of any sort related to the bones. I also start wean kittens on mashed raw bones and meat, without any trouble at all. And in my house, that's not an N=2 kind of observation.

In 2009, RawFitPet did a survey of raw feeders and one of the questions included problems (real or perceived) commonly associated with raw feeding. Here are the basic demographics of that survey: "Raw feeders with a wide range in experience participated, totaling 1870 submissions! Of these 1870 submissions, 1735 raw feeders are feeding raw to dogs, 423 are feeding raw to cats, and 32 are feeding raw to ferrets."

And this was one of the questions, along with the responses -


Have any of your raw fed pets been diagnosed with any of the following conditions that were attributed to raw feeding? (click all that apply)

Broken teeth (fracture)
Other bacterial infection
Foreign body requiring surgery


Of the 1870 owners surveyed, 1813 owners answered the question 1613 or 89% - have experienced NONE of these conditions
200 or 11% - have experienced one or more of the above conditions
Of these 200 owners
64.9% - Broken/fracture teeth (recreational bones commonly noted)
0.5% - Salmonella (deer meat)
7.5% - Other bacterial infection
4.7% - Foreign body requiring surgery
22.4% - Other

Granted, that's a survey rather than a formal study, but it's also a survey of nearly 2000 pet owners that are feeding an appropriate raw food diet, rather than the occasional anecdote about how bones are bad because a dog or cat chewed the trash one night and ended up with an obstruction.

If you want to see the entire survey, here's a link - ... e8251.html

The raw meat/bone link with mice is especially interesting to me, because I am a raw feeder. With mice, it stands to reason that they have the ability to digest raw bone with no problem, simply by the presence of cannibalistic behaviors among them. For me, the question isn't as much whether or not they can digest or tolerate the bones, but rather is there any benefit to including them in their diet.
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