#883 Pet Savings: A Kong And Beef Marrow Bones Are (Almost) Indestructible

10 Jun

puppy with puppy Kongs

Our first baby and his puppy Kongs.

My dog never chewed shoes… or furniture… no, it took him two years, yes TWO, to chew through his Kong toy. While I think I spent somewhere between $10 and $15 for the toy originally, which seemed like a lot of money for a dog toy, it saved a lot of money, furniture, shoes and angry yelling. We learned quickly there was no need to buy dog toys that only lasted an hour or a week at best when we had the incredible Kong (please note, Kongs are NOT indestructible, but they are tough).

We started out our puppy on some puppy Kongs that are a bit softer to chew. They lasted quite a while, but not nearly as long as the red, adult version. Some dogs might not be into the Kong if they are introduced to them as adults. But any dog will pretty much be interested in a toy that has a treat inside it.

In order to make the Kong entertainment last as long as possible, fill it with generic peanut butter, or if there are nut allergies, generic cheese whiz, and place the Kong in the freezer. The frozen treat will take the dog forever to get out. Perhaps hours. It can get messy so it might be best to give it to the dog outside or confined to a room.

dog with Kong

The original Kong shape was all we needed. Photo via flickr by dani0010.

Our dog even played with the Kong when there was nothing inside it. The funny shape of the original Kong made it bounce wildly all over our tile floor. He learned to pick it up in his mouth, sling it down and chase it, all for his own entertainment. Even after two years, when he had finally chewed the top off, he still played with it. We finally decided the thing was totally done in and tossed it after more than two years of play. But, boy, were we impressed with the use we got out of it.

The Kong was most helpful when our dog was primarily inside. Despite regular walks, many dogs get bored and over-energized without stimulation, which leads to destructive behavior. Giving our dog the Kong was a good way to channel energy inside when we weren’t out for walks. Now that he is an outdoor dog, which he loves, he’s doesn’t need dog toys so much.

But we do like to giveĀ  him an exciting treat/toy to make his day every now and then. Enter the beef marrow bones. Beef marrow bones are available in the meat section of the grocery store or from the butcher counter:

beef marrow bones

At $3.85 for two massive bones, it’s a lot cheaper than a similar pet store dog bone, and it’s from a reputable source.
dog eating a beef marrow bone
One bone lasts us about a week before it is lost or hidden. If the bone is not lost or hidden, it can be washed and treated like a natural Kong and stuffed with another treat once the marrow is gone. Beef marrow bones can also be cut to any size at the butcher’s upon request.

Dogs can eat raw bones because of their wild dog ancestry so there is no need to cook the bones. Cooked bones have a have higher risk for splintering and causing intestinal issues. Beef marrow is also highly nutritious for dogs.

Whenever dogs receive treats, remember to reduce their caloric intake from their regular food to avoid weight issues.

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