My Dog Ate a Leftover Chicken Bone! Is It Safe?

My Dog Ate a Leftover Chicken Bone! Is It Safe?

Last updated on March 23rd, 2023 at 06:15 am

Reading Time: 5 minutes

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Can Dogs Eat Leftover Chicken Bones?

Can dogs eat chicken bones? Dogs love meat and leftover bones, but do you know they can be a risk to your pet. 

Dogs can eat chicken bones, but it is not a healthy meal and can damage your dog’s health. Chicken bones are brittle that can pierce jaws and the gastrointestinal tract plus, block the food passage. Similarly, bones can choke the windpipe distressing your dog with cough and difficult breathing. 

Thus, if you want to keep your dog safe, you must know the potential hazards and the symptom of complications associated with eating chicken bones. Here you will find everything, and above all, given steps to handle the situation can save your pet. 

Can Dogs Eat Chicken Bones? 

Dogs often get leftover chicken bones from platters and enjoy their taste. Typically, they are quite trained to handle and process such meaty meals.

The bones get dissolved once they are in the stomach and nothing goes wrong. But most of the time, leftover chicken bones can do more harm than good, especially for puppies.

As cooked, steamed, roasted or fried chicken bones are soft and brittle that can splinter in your dog’s jaws. Similarly, the sharp edges of bones can damage gums, injure their throat or even pierce the gullet resulting in many interlinked problems. 

Therefore, you should keep an eye on your lovely pup and don’t allow him to get chicken bones. If you intentionally want to feed him a bone, separate all the meat from it first. Some dogs aggressively chew the meat off the bone and get in the entire piece when they fail. Your dog can also ingest intact bone if he eats it too fast. 

My Dog Ate a Leftover Chicken Bone! Is It Safe?

Can Dogs Eat Chicken Legs? 

Confusion prevails among dog owners that can dog eat chicken legs. The straightforward answer is drumsticks can pose a serious risk to dogs. So, it is better to avoid feeding your dog such chicken bones, and if you want to give him a meaty treat, cut small and flattened pieces of chicken breast, wingtips, or neckpieces and offer him as snacks.

How Bad Are Chicken Bones for Dogs? 

Chicken bones for dogs can be dangerous and result in bleeding of gums. Other bones such as beef and pork bones are also hard to digest and cause more problems. Hence, these significant hazards can occur if your dog eats chicken bones; 


Chicken bones can be a choking hazard to dogs and are stuck in the throat to block the air passage. If your dog swallows a larger bone, like thigh bone or simply any chicken bone, it can get stuck in his mouth and cause obstruction. Sometimes, when a dog tries to swallow a bone, it does not go all the way down in the stomach and is logged in the back of the throat or the start of the airway that may cause severe breathing issues. 

Risk of Tearing Food Pipe 

Sometimes, chicken bones can kill dogs. It is not very common, but it does happen and depends on the severity of damage to the food pipe. The esophagus or Gastrointestinal tract is mainly the food pipe that runs from mouth to stomach, through the
chest cavity and other body organs. The pointed bones pierce the GI tract, and anything consumed seeps out to the chest cavity. As a result, bacteria can get from the food pipe to the chest cavity and lead to chest or heart infections of dogs that could be fatal. This problem is very serious and may require surgery. 

Bacterial Infection

If your furry baby eats raw or improperly stored chicken bones, they can carry bacteria such as Salmonella, leading to GI tract infections. 

Signs and Symptoms 

The severity and symptoms of eating a chicken bone vary and depend on the extent of the damage. If your dog had many bones, the chances of sickness would be more. On the other hand, it will be mild trouble, and you can notice any of the following signs and symptoms. 

  • Vomiting 
  • Drooling 
  • Breathing 
  • difficulty 
  • Heavy cough 
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Lethargy 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Fever
  • Lack of appetite Retching 

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Chicken Bones?

If your dog eats a chicken bone, first you need to be calm and disciplined so your panic won’t hurt him and follow these steps: 

  • Dogs are mostly possessive over food and don’t allow to take it. So, he may rush to eat everything before you take it away. If your dog has already taken in all the bones, don’t confuse him with your actions and grasp any bone in his mouth. 
  • Next, make sure your dog is not choking and call your vet to figure out how to come out of this situation. Don’t self-treat your pup and follow the vet’s advice as he is in a better position to help with dogs’ situations based on his breed, size, and other factors. Most vets don’t recommend that you make your dog vomit. There is a risk of the bones becoming stuck, and he may ask you to feed your dog something to cushion the bones and minimize the potential damage. It could be white bread, pumpkin, or even asparagus. So, leave him on the adviser and follow his protocol. 
  • Plus, check your pups’ stool daily to see if there are bone fragments. If you cannot find them within 3 days after ingestion, you must take him to the vet to make sure the bones are not stuck in your pet’s intestine, food pipe, or throat.

Keep invigilating your dog for symptoms as mentioned earlier and update your vet. If you notice that your furry baby is lethargic, constipated, or has a bloody stool, straining to defecate, is not eating, or is generally uncomfortable, immediately take him to the vet to keep under observation.

Conclusion – Can Dogs Eat Chicken Bones? 

So, chicken bones might seem tasty to your dog, but it is better not to let them pick from the leftover meal. Instead, if you want to know, you ‘Can I give my dog chicken bone’ as a treat or check out our chicken bone broth recipe, it’s a great dog treat recipe super healthy as well! The clear suggestion is to avoid chicken bones; otherwise, give him small flattened pieces of meat and feed under your observation.

About The Author

I'm a content writer and researcher. But bottom line, I loveee animals. I had my first animal which was a guinea pig at age 8. Later had a bunny, dog and a lot, a lot of fish. Writing about what I know about pets will allow me to share my knowledge and love for them with everyone else. Dealing with dogs my entire life, I know a lot.

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