Ask the Pet Experts: Why Do Dogs Love Bones?

Dogs are natural-born chewers. Teething puppies turn into adult dogs that have strong jaws and teeth that are designed for tearing and crunching through tough materials. Let’s take a look at what four animal experts have to say about the scientific reasons our furry friends seek out the satisfying crunch of a good bone.

Dr. Mark Reynolds – Animal Behaviorist and Evolutionary Biologist:

Dogs are natural-born hunters, and their instinct to hunt and scavenge for food is deeply ingrained. Even though most dogs enjoy a well-balanced diet today, the instinctual drive to chew remains and bones offer dogs the opportunity to exercise their natural behaviors. Dr. Reynolds notes, “Dogs share a common ancestor with wolves, who relied on bones as a valuable source of nutrition. The act of chewing on bones taps into their ancestral instincts and provides a sense of fulfillment.”

Dr. Emily Thompson – Veterinary Behaviorist:

The act of chewing on a bone can be an immensely satisfying experience for dogs, leading to the release of endorphins—the “feel-good” hormones. Dr. Thompson explains, “Chewing on bones serves as an outlet for dogs’ natural instincts and helps satisfy their innate need for mental stimulation. It provides a form of enrichment and can prevent destructive behaviors that may arise from boredom or anxiety.” The repetitive motion of gnawing on a bone can have a calming effect, making it a fantastic stress-reliever for our furry companions.

Dr. Thomas Mitchell – Animal Nutritionist:

There is also a nutritional aspect of a dog’s desire to chew on bones. Dr. Mitchell states,”Bones are a natural source of essential nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, and trace minerals. When dogs chew on bones, they extract not only physical benefits but also vital nutrients that contribute to their overall health.” Dr. Mitchell advises pet owners to provide bones appropriate for their dog’s size and breed, ensuring they are raw and appropriately prepared to prevent any potential hazards.

Dr. Samantha Davis – Veterinarian and Canine Dental Health Specialist:

Another reason dogs are drawn to bones is deeply rooted in their oral health. Dr. Davis explains, “Chewing on bones provides dogs with a natural mechanism for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. The abrasive action of gnawing on bones helps remove plaque buildup, preventing dental issues such as periodontal disease.” The mechanical stimulation from chewing on bones also promotes saliva production, which aids in washing away food particles and bacteria.

As you can see, the scientific reasons behind dogs’ love for bones are multi-faceted and encompass their dental health, ancestral instincts, psychological well-being, and nutritional requirements. 

At Pet Evolution, we are committed to offering high-quality bones and chew toys that cater to the needs of our furry friends, ensuring their health, happiness, and overall satisfaction. Shop our bulk treat table or freezer case for a selection of top-tier options and remember; by offering your pup a bone, you’re providing them with the opportunity to indulge in a natural behavior that’s vital to their well-being and fulfillment.