Dogs need physical and mental stimulation, which explains their playful nature. Lack of adequate motivation leads to boredom.
A bored dog can look for other ways to be active, sometimes resulting in a mess. Other times, boredom may develop into depression. You should not let your dog get depressed.
To avoid this, you can take your dog for a walk and play with it for physical stimulation. For mental stimulation, a chew toy comes in handy. Alternatively, you can give it cow hooves to play with.
What Are Cow Hooves?
Hooves are the horny parts on cow feet’s extremities: they offer protection against the ground and support the animal’s weight when walking. They are fibrous and made from keratin, the substance found in hair and nails.
Many animal processing plants are resourceful and do not discard the hooves. Instead, they sell them to companies specializing in cow hoof chews for dogs.
The trotters from the animal processing plants go through several processes to ensure that they are clean and suitable for your furry friend. Some companies use organic cleaning methods for safety, while others use chemicals.
Why You Should Get Cow Hooves For Dogs?
Cow hooves are ideal for teething puppies. Chewing on the feet offers relief from teething pain. They are excellent chews for dogs that love gnawing on stuff. It prevents damage to your shoes, clothes, and other items in the house that your dog may sink its teeth.
Hooves and other chew toys also help with anxiety and depression. A hoof may offer temporary companionship for dogs in tense situations, for instance, if it is new to your home. Chewing stimulates their mind, keeping mood swings and aggression at bay. Also, the gnawing action strengthens the dog’s gums and teeth.
Hooves for dogs are better than the standard chew toys in many areas. They are affordable and durable – a hoof can last your dog for days. Moreover, hooves are organic and do not contain chemicals like plastic and rubber toys.
Canines can also eat cow hooves. We will look at this topic later.
Things To Consider When Getting Cow Hooves For Dogs
The following are key factors to remember when getting cow hooves for your pup.
Where Are The Hooves From?
You should get cow hooves from credible companies, particularly ones in the USA. Some dealers do not have quality products and may compromise your pet’s health. Furthermore, ensure that the hooves are 100% natural with no additives that can be harmful to canines.
Your Dog’s Chewing Behavior
A hoof is perfect for gnawing dogs to keep them busy and mentally stimulated. You may want to reconsider your decision to get a trotter for your canine if it is aggressive. Some dogs chew hard, which can splinter or break the cow trotter. Broken hoof parts are a choking hazard, while the splinter can injure the gums and other parts of the gastrointestinal system.
Size Of The Hoof
Cow hooves come in many sizes, so you should get a size your canine can handle without the risk of choking. A large hoof usually works fine, as your dog cannot swallow it whole.
Other factors to consider are cost and freshness. The hoof should be fresh for your dog to enjoy chewing on it.
Cooked Cow Hooves For Dogs
Cooked cow hooves are a delicacy in some cultures. When cooked, the trotters have a gelatinous appearance and can make a hearty stew. You can share cooked cow trotters with your four-legged friend.
Preparing cow hooves for dogs is simple. Start by getting fresh feet, particularly the ones straight from slaughterhouses or meat processing plants. Wash these cow parts thoroughly and put them in a pot to boil. As is the norm when preparing food for dogs, do not add spices or oil. Cooking makes hooves tender and easy to chew. Dogs also enjoy broth.
Eating cooked trotters is beneficial for your canine, as it is rich in protein, mainly collagen. This protein plays various roles in your dog’s health. Highlighted below are some benefits of collagen.
- Healthy skin and fur
- Eases joint pain
- Improves gut health
- An appetite booster
- It improves metabolism
Note that it is easy to cook fresh trotters than packaged ones. The latter may need a longer boiling time to get soft.
Risks Associated With Cow Hooves
While cow feet are perfect chews for your pup, you should know about their risks. The following are potential problems that these cow parts present.
A Choking Hazard
Dogs can choke on cow hooves. You might deal with such a situation if your dog breaks the hoof into pieces or if the trotter is small. Choking is challenging, and you may need to contact your veterinarian for help.
Additionally, your pup may get thirsty after a long gnawing session.
Like bones, hooves may splinter and can poke your dog’s gums, tongue, or intestines. The poking may lead to serious injuries.
A hoof is typically hard. Dogs can hurt their teeth via cracks and breaking. You should keep away hooves from dogs with injured or weak teeth to prevent more damage.
Hooves being animal parts may harbor pathogens like salmonella. This pathogen can cause poisoning, prompting a visit to the pet doctor. Salmonella may pass from your dog to your household, a reason why you should get fresh hooves.
As mentioned earlier, some companies may use chemicals to clean hooves before they hit the market. While chemicals are efficient in cleaning, the trotters may have traces of them when packed. These cleaning agents may upset your dog, characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, and tummy pain. Prevent such an occurrence by going for fully organic hooves.
Prevention Of The Risks
You can employ several preventive measures, like being on the lookout for your dog when playing with the chews.
Take the hoof away if your four-legged friend is getting aggressive with it. This way, you can prevent splintering and choking.
Be careful and gentle when taking the hoof, especially if your dog appears too protective of it. Furthermore, buy the trotters from legit dealers to prevent salmonella and chemical poisoning.
Be Ready For The Stench
Cow hooves can be stinky, especially after your dog chews on them. The smell comes from the grinding action and salivary action that causes its decomposition. The odor can be unbearable, forcing you to clean up after your canine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Flavored Cow Hooves For Dogs Worth It?
Cow hooves for dogs come in various flavors to make them more appealing. The flavoring is more like a filling in the hollow part of the hoof and may range from cheese and milk to peanut butter and bacon.
Be careful with flavored trotters, as your dog may be allergic to some additives. Your vet will help determine if your dog has allergies and guide you on suitable flavors.
Can Dogs Digest Cow Hooves?
Cow hooves are hard, courtesy of their keratin content. Dogs cannot digest keratin; instead, it will pass through their digestive system. However, boiled trotters are softer, and canines can digest the protein released.
How Do You Get Rid Of The Smell Of Cow Hooves?
You can avoid the smell of cow hooves by getting them fresh. Packaged cow feet are not so smelly but will have an odor once your doggo starts chewing on them. Cleaning after your pup or letting it play with the chews outside the house is a solution to the stench.
Cow hooves are safe for dogs and have many advantages. They help with your dog’s mental stimulation, averting anxiety and depression. Plus, they are cheaper and more durable alternatives to plastic and rubber chew toys.
The chewing action strengthens canines’ teeth, gums, and jaw muscles. However, keep an eye on your pooch when it’s busy with the chews to curb choking and splintering.
Ensure always to buy hooves from credible dealers and check out the ingredients. Flavored types are excellent, as long as your furry friend is not allergic to the flavors.