Chewing Safety for Dogs

Written by Lucy Marcham, Academy Trainer

Let’s face it, our dogs NEED to chew. Chewing supports dental health, releases endorphins, and provides important mental stimulation.

Every pooch should have the opportunity to chew on appropriate objects. This will prevent boredom and of course reduce damage to your shoes…

There are lots of chews available for our dogs, however safety is always key when giving your dog a chew. Here are some handy rules to keep in mind for safe and happy chewing.


1) Choose the Right Size!

A dog should be able to pick up the chew, get their jaw around it and hold the chew between their paws.

Every dog needs a chew that is big enough for them to gnaw on and enjoy, WITHOUT the risk of them swallowing it whole.

Dogs should never be given a chew that they can fit fully in their mouth.

Psst: Did you know the Frogg Fetch toy is perfect for use as a chew holder and for play?


2) Always Supervise!

Dogs should be watched any time they have a chew or toy, even if they have had that item before.

If your dog can tear or remove chunks from the chew easily, or they are getting through it very quickly, that chew should be taken away from them. This indicates that chew is not suited to them!


3) Remove the Chew

Chews should be removed once they become worn down and small enough to be swallowed.

Harder chews such as starch treats, antlers and hide can be especially risky if allowed to be worn down.


4) Keep Chewing Sessions Short

Your dog should have regular access to chews and gnaws. However, chewing should be allowed frequently for short periods of time. The best timeframe is around 15-20 minutes.

This can easily be built into your pet’s daily routine and provides the perfect amount of chewing for their physical and mental wellbeing.

Alongside these important rules, it is essential for all owners to understand HOW their dog chews.


Every Dog Chews Differently 

Understanding your dog’s individual chewing behaviour is key to understanding what chews will and will not work for them. Every dog is different (and that’s why we love them!) and a chew that is suitable for one dog may not be suitable for another.

Some dogs are strong chewers, this is where they bear down and tear at chews with strong jaws. These dogs require chews that can be easily digested or durable chews that won’t fracture or tear.

Other dogs of course will be gentler and more considered with their chewing.

So, before choosing a delicious chew, ask yourself if your dog bites, tears, nibbles, gnaws or mouths and licks the treats you give them.

Remember anything your furry friend is given to chew or play with poses a risk of swallowing large pieces. There is no chew that is inherently dangerous, the key is always observing, understanding your own dog, and removing anything unsafe.

Chewing is essential for both mental enrichment and that all important dental hygiene. If you are after more advice on how to keep your dog’s teeth clean, check out our Guide to Brushing Teeth.