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Thread: Feeding Deer Legs

  1. #1

    Feeding Deer Legs

    I have been feeding my dogs deer legs on and off for a while. I wondered if there is anything about doing this that could be harmful to the dogs - or if I should only feed them on legs rarely.

    Every day they are fed twice a day with working dog biscuits, and I give them each a leg to chew on during the day as a treat and to keep them occupied whilst I am at work. When they've got bored of the bones I give them a fresh leg, so I guess they are getting through two each every week.

    Is this too much?

  2. #2
    so long as they are not splintering the bones.

    you are taking the meat of the bones first are you!? had to check!

  3. #3
    Deer legs,roe, splinter easily. I have extracted splinters from the gums of one dog, after that I stopped feeing them. Ribs are fine. Make extra sure you do not feed deer fat. Caused the death of one of my dogs. Pancreatitis because the fat is too rich. Jim

  4. #4
    I took a risk and gave my 8 week old pup a leg (entire with fur), and a heart, following him finding an old deer leg in the compost heap and devouring it and being fine!

    I've always had labs though this is my first gun dog - I was always told that bones from larger animals like cow, lamb, or deer are fine as they do not splinter in a way that is dangerous to dogs. It's chicken and other birds you need to be careful of...

    Thinking about it, dog's are derived from wolves... who would naturally be given bones/scraps to chew on when they are being weaned onto meat... so in theory their digestive systems are ideally suited for this!

    I guess if my pup chokes to death one day I'll eat my words, but at the moment he's incredibly healthy, gaining weight in the right places, and doesn't chew my furniture! His bowels also seem in really good order - it was just a bit too soft on just puppy food; the odd extra bit of protein seems to leave it looking healthy!

    My mate's a farrier and gives his dogs horse nail clippings to chew on and they seem fine on that too!

    Might be different with smaller breeds etc - and it's worth saying that my last lab died aged 13 when he got into a bin and got a 2" peice of plastic straw wedged in his gut (xray's don't pick this up). He was sick from the minute we found him but took a couple of weeks for him to expire (he was at the vets, recovering then geting sick then recovering again).

    At the end of the day it's an organic substance so your dog should be able to break it down - I've seen dogs eat entire chair legs, branches, and cardboard boxes and be fine so I can't believe the're that sensitive!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo123p View Post
    Deer legs,roe, splinter easily. I have extracted splinters from the gums of one dog, after that I stopped feeing them. Ribs are fine. Make extra sure you do not feed deer fat. Caused the death of one of my dogs. Pancreatitis because the fat is too rich. Jim
    Sorry to hear about your dog - was it definitely the deer fat? How much are we talking as most meat contains fat and I've never heard of a wolf getting pancreatitis? What breed was your dog? My mum had a sh*tty little Bichon Frise that had an incredibly sensitive digestive system, and one of my mates mum's dog is diabetic...!!!

    I'm imagine certain dogs are more sensitive, but I'm only going on my experience of labs and 4 non-hunting breeds...

  6. #6
    It is not the sensitivity that is the issue it is splinters rupturing the gut. Plintered bone is as sharp as a needle. Roe legs shard in stipe about three inch long. Caught on the side wall of the gut it can push through the wall. Your choice but be careful. Jim

  7. #7
    It was a cocker. Five days in the vets to keep it going but any fat aftrer that she was in agony. Finally had to make the disission to pts. First thing the vet asked was did she have access to fat. Guilty. I was butchering a carcass with four sets of eyes glued to my every action. I tossed them some trimmings as I went along. When I said deer fat vet just shok his head. Way too rich. There is a post on here about it. Jim

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo123p View Post
    It is not the sensitivity that is the issue it is splinters rupturing the gut. Plintered bone is as sharp as a needle. Roe legs shard in stipe about three inch long. Caught on the side wall of the gut it can push through the wall. Your choice but be careful. Jim
    Thanks Jim, so no bones are safe or just Roe? Will boiling and greasing them help do you think? - I figured a juicy raw bone off a youngish animal should be flexible enough not to splinter but maybe not...

    Maybe I'll stick to hearts from now on! He had one recently that he just chewed all the meat off and left - the previous one he ate most of it (the first one) - so maybe he's learnt not to crunch them up! My mate just lets his dogs get on with it and learn on their own (his won't go near peoples drinks following burning itself on a hot cup of tea once)... Whilst I obviously don't want him to come to harm I also don't want a dog that's ignorant of everything that can harm it so I guess I'm ok with the risk and will just have to wear the consequences.

  9. #9
    I used to often give my lab a lower roe leg, complete with fur. He used to relish them, but they do splinter badly. One day, he was in his kennel making some painful squeaking sounds..went out to check on him and found he had sh@t out a complete hoof!!

    Felt quite sorry for him really...

  10. #10
    no point comparing our lilly livered house pets to wolves

    they are so far removed and the gut makeup, tolerance and bacterial content is far from what our dogs have.

    Fat can be an issue, but it is not normally a one off occurrence that causes pancreatitis but months and years of high fat content tit bits or food.

    we could probably all survive on 100% raw meat but I guarantee you your bowels wont thank you for the sudden change!

    My father is a retired vet and was kept busy with dogs that had splintered bones in them and sticking out of them.
    worst one I saw was a Cairn terrier that got into the bins and when they woke up a few days later it had an entire Coke can ring pull sticking out of its arse...ring first! pulling it would have sliced its arseh0le open

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