Nylabone Dangers

Updated March 23, 2017

Some dogs have insatiable appetites for chewing. Puppies especially tend to chew everything in their path. Nylabone was invented as a long-lasting chew option to keep those never worn-out dogs busy and safe, but a synthetic "bone" made of inorganic chemicals may not be safe for your dog.

Everlasting Chew

Nylabones are made of a synthetic polymer shaped like a bone. Unlike other chews they are flexible, inedible and meant to be long-lasting. Some Nylabone products have meat flavourings like chicken and beef and come in different sizes ranging from puppy and small dogs to large ones fit for a Samoyed. The idea is that the synthetic bone can outlast organic chews like rawhides and bullysticks.

Benefits of Nylabone

Besides being able to keep your dog busy longer than most chews, Nylabones can also save money because of their resilience. And where some chews, like rawhide, begin to get messy and disintegrate - Nylabones remain in tact. Better yet, when they become slobbery, dirty or get buried in the backyard, Nylabones can be easily cleaned and returned to circulation.

The Safe Part

Even the makers of Nylabone know that no chew is indestructible. Enough canine teeth chomping down on even the most durable object is going to eventually create some wear and tear. They planned for that. Nylabone's manufacturer says that after enough chewing Nylabones will give off small shavings no larger than grains of rice. These shavings indicate that the chewer is probably getting a good teeth cleaning. They claim the shavings will safely pass through a canine digestive system and come out on the other side. Pet owners should expect this.

The Danger

If a dog chews off chunks larger than rice-size shavings, then a pet-owner should worry. Nylabone makers say chunks larger than a quarter of an inch may be harmful to a dog. If a dog swallows a quarter inch chunk or larger, owners should take the bone away and immediately consult a veterinarian. After all, Nylabone is made of synthetic polymers and is not meant for major ingestion.

Proper Maintenance

Makers of Nylabone say that before giving a dog a Nylabone, make sure the bone is intact and whole. If there are any missing pieces or cracks, the bone probably isn't safe for use. Also watch to see how worn down the ends and knuckles are. If too much has been worn away, it's probably time for a new Nylabone. Also, consider the chewer. Some nylabones are made of soft, flexible materials. Others are very hard. For a fervent or very strong chewer, the harder bone may be the safer and more appropriate choice.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Eric Feigenbaum started his career in print journalism, becoming editor-in-chief of "The Daily" of the University of Washington during college and afterward working at two major newspapers. He later did many print and Web projects including re-brandings for major companies and catalog production.