FDA warns against processed bone treats after reports of dog illnesses, deaths

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Federal Drug Administration has issued a warning that some treats being given to dogs could be making them sick.

The report from the FDA states dozens of pets fell ill and some deaths were related to some bone treats.

According to the FDA, the bone treats differ from uncooked butcher-type bones because they are processed and packaged for sale as dog treats. A variety of commercially-available bone treats for dogs—including treats described as “Ham Bones,” “Pork Femur Bones,” “Rib Bones,” and “Smokey Knuckle Bones”—were listed in the reports.

Erin Wrightson and her husband do just about everything with their favorite four-legged friend, Tucker.

“We often say that he’s like a toddler,” she said. “We take him everywhere. He is very needed and very spoiled.”

Sometimes being spoiled meant giving Tucker a treat such as a bone – or at least they used to. Worthington said she won’t be giving the bones to him anymore.

“I immediately got up off the couch, picked up all the bones, and threw them out,” she said.

Christopher Hanna owns a dog named Shelby. He’s had her for six months, but he can’t imagine life without her.

“I’d be pretty devastated,” he said. “I’d be pretty devastated if my dog was sick.”

The FDA said some of the illness from the bones include blockage in the digestive track, cuts and wounds in the mouth, vomiting and diarrhea.

“It’s very scary because, obviously, they can’t tell us what’s going on,” Wrightson said.

And that’s enough to make pet lovers change their minds.

“To think it’s something we could be giving them is scary, and it’s not worth it,” Wrightson said.

There are still some bones that can be given to dogs. Uncooked butcher-types that are not processed do not pose the same threat.

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